We enter winter of 2018 as we have remained throughout the year, with huge demand for corporate associates. Candidates with experience in finance, emerging markets and venture capital, M&A, securities and capital markets have no shortage of opportunity here. Candidates with 2 plus years of experience and that have the California bar are ideally situated, though in many instances firms will make exceptions for stellar candidates barred in other states.
Demand for litigators is markedly more dynamic in San Francisco than Silicon Valley, with firms seeking litigators at all levels. Firms are looking for those with experience in toxic tort, white collar, antitrust, securities, insurance, and general commercial litigation. With competition for these positions intense, candidates should bring top academics, strong courtroom skills as well as clerkships. Admission to the California bar is required for all but truly exceptional candidates.
Hiring for employment attorneys in San Francisco is at a strong pace, with firms seeking associates at all levels but particularly mid level. Primarily, the need is for wage and hour and class action experience, though there is also some need for traditional labor experience. California licensed attorneys are strongly preferred, with foreign language skills a plus.
Firms are hiring patent litigators at a steady pace, with needs particularly on strong mid level associates with hard science backgrounds, though there are several current openings for life science candidates as well.
Firms continue to seek patent prosecutors in San Francisco, particularly in hard science, though demand is less than in Silicon Valley in recent months. Need is focused on mid level associates having the California bar with computer science and engineering, electrical engineering, or mechanical engineering degrees, and there is also a call for life science expertise. There is also need for patent agents, though demand is slightly down from our last report.
There is a need for technology transactions candidates for junior to mid level associates, with particular strengths in licensing, conducting M&A due diligence, and outsourcing and tech services agreements. Experience in privacy and data security is a strong advantage here.
Real estate also remains in steady demand presently, with candidates at the mid to senior level sought for acquisitions, finance, leasing, development projects, and joint ventures in the retail, hospitality, and general commercial industries.
We are seeing positions for environmental attorneys, both in transactional and litigation roles. Firms, however, are highly selective, with many positions remaining open for extended periods, and ideal candidates will have top qualifications and generally must have California experience and licenses.
Slow throughout the middle of last year, we are beginning to see some movement in tax in 2018, with several openings for transactional tax associates having experience in M&A, real estate and international taxation matters. Most firms require the California bar, with an LL.M. strongly preferred.
State of the Market Report: Silicon Valley by Christina Brown, Legal Recruiter, BCG Attorney Search
Corporate demand dominates the market in Silicon Valley, with law firms seekingcandidates at all levels that have experience. M&A, emerging growth, venture capital, private equity, and securities experience is highly sought, with finance (corporate, leveraged, and commercial) also in demand.
Patent Prosecution hiring is extremelystrong in hard science (electrical engineering, computer science, mechanical engineering), and somewhatless in life science for both associates and agents.
Though not as strong as Patent Prosecution, demand for patent litigators is significant. Need for mid-level hard and life science litigators (preferably with USPTO registration) remains steady here, with Hatch Waxman experience preferred.
Litigation saw a sharpincrease, although firms are highly selective with ideal candidates having stellar academics (law review, clerkships), BigLaw experience, and excellent skills such as trial, arbitration, and deposition work. While most firms are seeking general commercial litigation experience, there are several openings for securities, privacy and tech specialties. Admission to the California bar is a must.
Steady Practice Areas:
Labor and Employment
Demand for employment associates at all levels remainssteady in Silicon Valley, and there is no indication that this trend will slow in the coming months. Ideal candidates will bring strong class action, wage and hour, single plaintiff, and counseling experience. There is also some opportunity for traditional labor positions.
Tech transactions hiring continues to remain steady in Silicon Valley for those with strong experience in licensing. Those with exceptional qualifications in traditional corporate practice wishing to transition to this practice may also be considered, particularly those with a technology background or experience.
While not hot, there is continued need for health care attorneys in the mid-level range. Firms are seeking candidates able to manage M&A, divestiture and reorganization, regulatory compliance, as well as governance.
Law firms in Los Angeles continue to seek Corporate and Finance attorneys. Specifically, the most successful candidates will have two to eight years of experience in private equity, VC, M&A, securities, tech transactions, and emerging growth companies. Firms are also looking for finance attorneys with debt finance, structured finance, banking, and corporate finance (including high yield transactions) experience.
Labor & Employment
Employment Litigation attorneys at all levels (including at the very junior level) are in demand in Los Angeles. Firms are especially looking for candidates with experience in every area of employment law including class action, wage and hour, discrimination, harassment, wrongful termination, and retaliation experience, with counseling experience considered a strong plus. Membership to the CA Bar is a requirement for almost every firm. Employment attorneys seeking to move to the Los Angeles should take the next available bar exam, and they will likely only be seriously considered by firms if they have already sat for the bar and are awaiting their results or have passed the bar.
Los Angeles firms are continuing to look for experienced Family Law attorneys more than ever. Family Law attorneys with two to five years of experience are the most sought after, although the occasional firm does not require previous Family Law experience. Excellent credentials are always desired.
Litigation is the hottest practice area in California (with Labor & Employment a not-too-distant second) and is the hottest practice area in the Los Angeles area. Firms of all sizes – Big Law, medium-sized, and boutique – are actively hiring litigators, particularly at the mid-level. That being said, lateral candidates must have solid academic and professional credentials, and candidates without the California Bar will likely not be considered. Candidates with trial experience are also highly desired, and clerkships (particularly federal clerkships) are a major plus as well. The hottest practice areas are General Commercial Litigation and Insurance Defense.
Los Angeles firms continue to look for Real Estate attorneys at every experience level, in particular at the mid to senior level, but in general with two or more years of experience. Many firms are also seeking Real Estate partners, although a robust book of portable business is almost always required. Candidates should have experience in any of the following areas: purchase & sales, leasing, joint ventures, and finance (including CMBS). We are seeing more Real Estate Finance openings. Specifically, firms are seeking candidates with experience in mortgage/mezzanine debt and joint-venture equity work.
Los Angeles is teeming with Entertainment boutiques and large firms with growing and busy entertainment practice groups. Boutiques often represent talent and look for attorneys who can prepare and work on negotiations related to artist performances, recordings, touring, and appearances in motion pictures and television. Larger firms tend to represent studios and seek candidates with experience in mergers and acquisitions and joint ventures. All candidates must be members of the CA bar. Corporate attorneys who seek to transition into entertainment should not have more than 3 years of experience, must have superb academic and professional credentials, and must have a real and demonstrable interest in the entertainment industry and ideally, entertainment law. If a corporate attorney wants to transition into entertainment law, his or her best bet would be to transition into the corporate practice group at another firm that has an entertainment practice in Los Angeles.
Health care is a relatively small but robust practice area in LA. Candidates with experience in corporate, transactional, and regulatory matters for healthcare clients are highly sought after, but there are occasional and interesting in-house opportunities for healthcare litigators as well. Those with three to eight years of experience will have the most success in obtaining interviews.
There is a relatively small but steady demand for Tax attorneys. Those firms that are hiring are looking for candidates with at least three years of experience. An LL.M. in Tax is usually a big plus, if not a requirement. There is a need for a SALT (State and Local Tax) attorneys as well.
Trusts & Estates
A handful of Los Angeles firms are seeking experienced Trusts and Estates attorneys. Candidates who have an LL.M. in Tax will have the most success. The ideal candidate will have five to seven years of experience in trust administration and providing proactive estate planning solutions for high net worth individuals and families. Candidates should have significant experience in drafting estate planning documents, including wills, revocable trusts, and powers of attorney.
Litigation is a very strong practice area in Orange County, with firms (boutique, medium-sized, and large) seeking attorneys with anywhere from one to ten or more years of law firm experience. The most focused demand is for mid-level litigators with experience in business and commercial litigation, product liability, insurance, and financial litigation. Since positions in Orange County are highly competitive, those with top academics and solid, practical courtroom and deposition experience will fare best in their search for a position. Orange County firms also like to see ties to and a real interest in the area, as they would prefer that their candidates live in Orange County rather than commute from the Los Angeles area or even San Diego. That said, candidates that are willing to search for opportunities in Orange County rather than solely in San Diego or the Los Angeles area will be at an advantage, as the pool of applicants is small.
Steady Practice Areas:
IP Litigation & Patent Prosecution
IP Litigation and Patent Prosecution are steady practice areas in Orange County, with a handful of strong firms seeking IP litigators, patent prosecutors, patent agents, and technical specialists with two or more years of practical experience in these areas. Candidates should already be members of the USPTO, have a degree in the hard sciences or life sciences (ideally a masters or PhD), have strong academic credentials, and for attorneys, have the CA Bar.
Similar to in the Los Angeles area, Corporate demand remains strong in Orange County, mirroring the continued booming economy. When corporate demand is high, other practice areas, such as Real Estate thrive as well. Candidates with two to eight years of experience in private equity, VC, M&A, securities, tech transactions, and emerging growth companies, as well as general corporate experience will find numerous opportunities with firms in Orange County as well as in the Los Angeles area.
Labor & Employment
We continue to witness an incredible demand for Labor & Employment attorneys across California, and Orange County is no exception. So strong is the demand for employment litigators that those with a strong interest in L&E can now make the transition to this practice area even absent a practical background in it, assuming that the candidates have otherwise excellent credentials.
Slower Practice Areas:
Apart from the practice areas listed above, there have been sporadic postings in Bankruptcy, Environmental, Family Law, and Trusts & Estates. However, these areas are, for the most part, in little demand.
State of the Market Report: San Diego by Romina L. Filippou, Legal Recruiter, BCG Attorney Search
San Diego is a desirable market for candidates seeking to make a lateral move either within the state of California or from out-of-state. Its beauty, climate, proximity to the ocean, and affordable prices relative to the rest of California make San Diego a stand-out above other destinations in California and elsewhere, and as a result, the competition in San Diego is intense. Beyond requiring outstanding academic credentials and practical legal experience, California licensure is (generally) required, and ties to the area should be demonstrable. San Diego is also a small market, so there are not as many jobs as in the Los Angeles area and Bay Area.
When demand for corporate legal jobs increases, Litigation opportunities generally decrease (and vice versa), and at this time, we are seeing a lot of Litigation opportunities and fewer corporate opportunities in San Diego. While there are a fair amount of Litigation opportunities at big law, medium-sized, and small firms, they are quite slow and selective in making hiring decisions, often inviting candidates back for several rounds of interviews and reposting positions over the course of several months.
Accordingly, candidates should have excellent academic credentials and practical law firm and/or clerkship experience, such as appearances in court, taking and defending depositions, significant client contact, and robust legal research and writing experience. The most sought-after candidates are those with two to six years of experience, although more senior litigators will find opportunities in general commercial litigation, insurance defense, construction defect, general and professional liability, government/municipal law, and trusts & estates.
Steady Practice Areas:
IP Litigation and Patent Prosecution:
Intellectual Property has been quite strong in San Diego recently, particularly (but not exclusively) in the area of hard sciences for IP Litigation attorneys, Patent Prosecution attorneys, patent agents, and technical specialists. Candidates should already be members of the USPTO, have a degree in the hard sciences or life sciences (ideally a masters or PhD), have strong academic credentials, and for attorneys, have the CA Bar.
Corporate demand is quite weak at the moment in San Diego. The little demand that does exist is in the areas of corporate finance, private equity, VC, M&A, securities, tech transactions, and emerging growth companies. Experience sought ranges from two to ten or more years, although it is mostly in the two to seven year range, and while most firms require state bar membership, the rare firm will consider candidates licensed in other jurisdictions with otherwise outstanding credentials.
Labor & Employment
The market for Labor and Employment, like the market for corporate, is currently somewhat weak in San Diego, unlike in other areas of the state like the Los Angeles area and the Bay Area. The candidates that are most sought after are litigators with class action, wage and hour, discrimination, harassment, wrongful termination, and retaliation experience, with counseling experience considered a strong plus. Exceptionally strong litigators with an interest in transitioning to Labor & Employment will find fewer opportunities here, but an abundance of opportunities in the Los Angeles area and Bay Area.
The market in San Diego is also less active in areas such as Trusts and Estates, Tax, Health Care, Family Law, and Immigration, although there are a few listings. Attorneys with exceptional qualifications in any practice area can nearly always find opportunities, particularly if an attorney has a big enough portable book of business.
State of the Market Report: Portland by Paul Danielson, Recruiter, BCG Attorney Search
The summer in Portland was record hot, weather wise, as the greater Portland area dealt with high temperatures, as well as poor air quality from a series of area wildfires. Legal hiring, on the other hand, seemed to slow substantially over the summer, with fewer jobs coming online in the past three months. We hope to see things pick up heading into 2018. Portland is still an extremely desirable market, which also makes it extremely competitive. Candidates will need to have stellar credentials, even if they are targeting smaller and mid-sized Portland firms, and local ties to the area are still very helpful. Any candidate with a portable book above $500k will find open doors at almost every Portland firm.
As is the case in pretty much every major market on the West coast for the past year or more, litigation hiring is dominating the Portland legal market. We are seeing openings at all levels of experience, with a consistent demand from firms for very high-level credentials and experience, particularly trial experience. Specifically, firms have been looking for candidates with litigation experience in the following areas: business and complex commercial litigation, medical malpractice, trusts and estates litigation, construction litigation, and insurance coverage.
Demand for corporate attorneys has fluctuated over the past couple years in the Portland market. The business climate remains very strong, but we see many listings come online at one point in time only to have them disappear for a couple months after firms have expanded their headcount enough to meet their still conservative approach to hiring and staffing. If you are a lateral corporate candidate in the Portland market with strong credentials, you will see interview activity, but may have to have patience if you catch the Portland market at a downturn in the current corporate hiring cycle.
Real Estate & Land Use in Portland seems to fluctuate substantially if you track the past few years – firms go on a hiring binge, and then listings can disappear or lay dormant for months at a time. Real estate candidates looking in Portland should take advantage now or risk having to wait until mid-2018 if the hiring cycle we have seen continues. Meanwhile, real estate deals and development in Portland continue to happen at a fairly substantial pace given the city’s growth in both population and business, so we do expect there to be additional opportunities for at least the next couple years.
Steady Practice Areas:
In a little bit of a surprise, we have seen an uptick in IP Litigation listings in Portland that matches a larger trend of new hiring in that practice area on the West coast generally. Portland is not typically a hotbed of IP litigation matters, and the listings are concentrated in the few firms that have that practice group represented in Portland, although this is one market to keep an eye on going forward as Portland’s technology scene is still in the very nascent stages relative to the Bay Area to the South and Seattle to the North, but could expand substantially in the decade to come.
State of the Market Report: Seattle by Paul Danielson, Recruiter, BCG Attorney Search
Seattle has been one of the hottest destinations in the United States for incoming residents generally, with high growth and economic numbers, as well as rising housing prices that are being somewhat mitigated by a wave of new construction – in fact, for the second year in a row, Seattle still has more cranes in the air than any other city in the country. As expected, the popularity of Seattle generally leads to an intensely competitive hiring market, where Seattle firms have the relative luxury of considering multiple highly qualified applicants for every opening. Candidates who want to stand out should bring high-level experience from large firms, stellar credentials, and ideally portable business.
Like every other quarter this year to date, Litigation is dominating the lateral hiring market in Seattle, with nearly twice as many listings posted as any other practice area. Firms are specifically seeking candidates with experience litigating matters in insurance coverage, construction, products liability, class actions, securities, and white collar. Above the 5th year class level, most firms will require lateral candidates to have at least some portable book of business. Notably, in what may signal a future slowdown in litigation hiring, a number of postings were for staff attorney positions rather than full-time permanent hires.
After going dormant for the latter part of 2016 and first half of 2017, hiring in patent prosecution in Seattle has picked up again in a major way (and hopefully will continue to do so going into 2018), with most listings seeking attorneys and patent agents with degrees in electrical engineering, computer science, and computer engineering. There were also a handful of listings for practitioners with life science backgrounds, although lateral life science patent candidates should have at least a Masters level degree, and ideally a Ph.D., to get an interested look from the majority of Seattle firms.
Seattle has more cranes “in the air” than any other city in the United States right now, and law firms and developers anticipate continued growth through at least the next year, which is reflected in the number of listings we have seen for real estate attorneys, at the junior, mid, and senior level. Land use and leasing experience are always desired, and it does not hurt to have some experience in affordable housing given Seattle’s major focus on that issue in the past couple years.
Corporate listings remain steady, although not nearly as hot as the past couple years, with firms leaving openings online for a long time, suggesting they are hiring opportunistically and not for urgent and immediate needs. As such, would-be lateral corporate candidates in the Seattle market will need to bring top law school credentials and large deal experience to get a good look from most Seattle firms.
Labor & Employment
With Seattle’s economy booming for the past couple years, and combined with lots of hiring of skilled and educated workers to fuel the continued expansion of tech in the region, it is no surprise to see firms needing to steadily replenish or increase their roster of attorneys with strong labor & employment experience. Experience in employment litigation is the most sought after, although we have seen a handful of listings seeking more traditional labor and counseling experience.
The greatest demand throughout Nevada these last few months has been for general commercial litigators (including those with construction defect, financial services, and insurance experience) primarily at the mid-level, 2-5 years. National and boutique firms are seeking candidates already admitted to the bar, with trial, deposition, and strong academics, with clerkships, law review and moot court experience highly valued.
Steady Practice Areas:
Need for labor and employment candidates was up the previous summer, particularly for mid-level associates with strong litigation experience coupled with counseling and handbook experience. We anticipate demand in this area to continue to grow.
Demand for family law attorneys with experience ranging from 1-5 years remains steady. Firms seek attorneys demonstrating an ability to manage intensive motion practice, discovery responses, deposition experience, and trial work.
Trusts and Estates
Firms are seeking mid to senior associates skilled in estate and succession planning, administration and probate with some (though less) demand for litigation.
State of the Market Report: Phoenix by Paul Danielson, Recruiter, BCG Attorney Search
By far the largest legal market in Arizona, Phoenix includes many local and regional law firms, and a decent presence from many national and international firms. Laterals from other markets will find a great salary-to-cost-of-living ratio in Phoenix, particularly at larger AmLaw firms. Firms in Phoenix can be highly selective, and it is one of the cities that still likes to see, if not outright require, candidates to demonstrate strong local ties to be considered. Firms will also expect candidates to pass or waive into the Arizona Bar, depending on seniority and eligibility.
Like every other market on the West coast right now, Litigation is dominating the listings and lateral hiring activity for Phoenix area firms. Firms are looking for litigators everywhere from the junior associate to the partner level, though anyone past their fifth or sixth year of practice should expect to bring at least a modest portable book of business to be considered by most firms in Phoenix. Specific experience firms are seeking includes medical malpractice, insurance coverage and defense, professional liability, construction defect, and healthcare litigation.
Labor & Employment
Lateral hiring in Labor & Employment has picked up in Phoenix this past quarter, and we expect demand to remain strong for the next couple months. Firms are concentrating their lateral hiring in this practice area at the junior and mid-level, and are specifically seeking candidates with employment litigation experience, particularly class action, wrongful termination, and harassment litigation.
Demand for corporate attorneys remains steady in the Phoenix market, which we always take as a good sign for a healthy local economy and healthy lateral market. It is primarily the mid-size regional and larger national firms seeking corporate attorney candidates, so any candidate looking to lateral to or within Phoenix must have credentials sufficient to meet the stringent requirements of larger firms, specifically strong law school credentials and high-level large deal experience at a major firm.
Real estate hiring in Phoenix has been steady all year long, and this quarter is no exception. With housing, commercial, and other development continuing in the latter half of the traditional 7 to 9-year boom cycle, firms are still looking for candidates with solid experience in real estate sales, leasing, land use, and other related issues, ideally experience in large commercial deals. Any real estate candidate with portable business is sure to get a look from most Phoenix firms.
This is a very niche area, but worth mentioning as we have seen multiple smaller firms in the Phoenix market seeking experienced family law practitioners in the past few quarters. If you have solid experience in family law matters, particularly for high net worth individuals, it is a good time to be looking for new opportunities in the Phoenix market.
Slow to Dead Practice Areas:
We have seen a handful of listings in the following areas in the Phoenix market recently: Tax, Trusts & Estates, Bankruptcy, Patent Prosecution, and Environmental Law. Any practice area not listed above can be considered currently dormant in the Phoenix market for lateral hiring activity.
State of the Market Report: Colorado by Jamie Bailey, Partner, BCG Attorney Search - Chicago
Partners with Portable Business
Are you a partner with portable business looking to lateral to a new firm in Colorado? Generally speaking, firms are looking for a minimum of $1M in portable business. If you are a partner with business interested in transitioning to a new firm in Colorado, please call our Chicago office.
Denver firms remain busy in a number of key practice areas, including: corporate transactional, labor and employment, environmental, intellectual property and litigation. Specific skills and hiring requirements in these areas are noted below.
As reported in the previous report, transactional practices in Denver are thriving. We would like to speak with associates with 2-3 years of experience in finance, M&A and securities transactions, including experience with the Securities Act of 1933 and the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. Additionally, finance associates with 2-3 years of experience and an interest in public finance transactions who have had prior experience handling securities and finance matters should reach out to us. We are also seeking associates with 3+ years of experience in handling general corporate, capital markets and private equity matters.
Litigation(CO bar is most often required and prior judicial clerkship experience is always a plus)
Since our last report, we have seen a significant decline in the need for litigation associates in Denver firms. However, we are interested in speaking with litigation associates who have 2+ years of experience in complex litigation, white collar, criminal litigation and investigations. We would also like to speak with senior level litigation attorneys with 5-12 years of experience handling white collar defense matters. (A federal clerkship and/or experience as an Assistant U.S. Attorney is preferred.)
Patent prosecution remains strong in Denver firms. We would be interested in speaking with patent prosecution associates with 2+ years of experience and backgrounds in electrical engineering, computer science, physics and mechanical engineering. (Candidates who are fluent in Mandarin should definitely contact our Chicago office.) We would also like to speak with patent prosecution associates with a background in chemical engineering, chemistry, biochemistry, or bio-engineering. (Large law firm experience is required.)
Although we are not currently experiencing a heavy need for real estate laterals in Denver firms, we would be interested in speaking with real estate associates with 1-4 years of experience in leasing, acquisition and disposition, financings and title and survey matters.
Denver firms are seeking environmental litigators with 3+ years of experience in environmental litigation. We would also like to speak with associates that have 2-4 years of experience handling complex transactions and litigation in connection with the Clean Air Act, the Clean Water Act, RCRA, CERCLA and toxic tort claims.
Labor and employment associates with 3-5 years of experience in employment litigation and counseling in state and federal courts should contact our Chicago office regarding Denver opportunities.
State of the Market Report: Chicago by Jamie Bailey, Partner, BCG Attorney Search - Chicago
Chicago law firms are thriving. Chicago transactional practices are flourishing and remain very busy. Although we have seen a slight decrease in the number of general corporate and M&A positions since our last report, there has been an increase in the need for finance associates with varying skills (described in more detail below). Litigation remains constant and there has been an increased need for general commercial litigation associates, as well as those with particular skills in banking and anti-fraud litigation. Whereas in the last report we reported an increased need for healthcare associates, we have more recently witnessed a slight decline in the need for lateral associates in this area. Intellectual property practices are continuing to thrive and both patent litigation and patent prosecution practices are very busy, with significant activity in the life sciences area. There has been a slight decline in the need for labor and employment associates, but busy employee benefits practices are reflective of the strong workflow firms are experiencing in their corporate and finance practices.
We are excited as we look ahead to 2018 and believe the legal market in Chicago will reflect our optimism for continued and consistent need for highly skilled laterals in the major practice areas discussed below.
Partners with Portable Business
If you are a partner with portable business, we are interested in speaking with you. Generally speaking, large firms in this market are looking for a minimum of $1M in portable business. Partners seeking to make a move should contact our Chicago office.
General Corporate; Finance; M&A; Private Equity; Investment Management; Securities; Lending; Hedge Funds; Public Finance; Equipment Finance
We would be interested in speaking with transactional associates with 2-6 years of experience in general corporate, M&A and private equity transactions. More senior level associates with similar skills and 6+ years of experience should also get in touch with us. Mid-level associates with 3+ years of experience in corporate lending, bank and non-bank syndicated transactions, as well as cash flow lending experience should get in touch with our Chicago office. Top Chicago firms are also seeking investment management associates with 2-5 years of ‘40 Act experience. Associates with 7+ years of experience representing institutional investors in domestic and international investments who also have M&A experience are highly sought after by top tier Chicago firms. We would also like to speak with associates with 3+ years of experience in private equity, acquisition finance, leveraged buyouts, equity investments and restructurings and workouts. Associates with 3-5 years of experience handling public finance transactions (particularly those with experience handling healthcare finance transactions) should reach out to our Chicago office, as well as those with 3-5 years of experience handling equipment finance and leasing transactions. Chicago firms are also seeking associates with 4-5 years of experience representing asset managers, hedge funds and commodity pools. Technology associates with 4+ years of experience handling general corporate and securities transactions should also reach out to us.
Top tier Chicago firms have asked us to help them supplement their associate ranks with highly skilled litigators. We would like to speak with litigation associates with 2-3 years of experience in products liability, premises liability, construction and tort litigation matters. Mid-level associates with 4+ years of complex commercial and/or class action litigation experience should get in touch with us. We also have a need for banking litigators with 3-5 years of experience handling workout negotiations. Associates with 2-4 years of experience in anti-fraud litigation with excellent litigation skills and trial experience should reach out to our Chicago office. We are also interested in speaking with more senior level litigation associates with 5-7 years of experience in business, professional liability and employment litigation matters. Reiterating the last report, smaller firms continue to have a need for litigation associates at all levels in a broad range of areas, including labor and employment, insurance coverage, workers’ compensation, professional negligence, probate, plaintiffs’ class action and family law litigation.
Health Care – Regulatory Compliance; Finance; Anti-Kickback; Fraud and Abuse; HIPAA; HITECH; Data Privacy
Since the last report, we have witnessed a slight decline in the need for healthcare associates in Chicago. However, we do have opportunities for associates with 2-5 years of experience handling healthcare reform, fraud and abuse, Anti-Kickback, and HIPAA and HITECH compliance matters. Associates with 2-4 years of experience in data privacy transactions should reach out to our Chicago office. As noted above, we would also be interested in speaking with associates who have 3-5 years of experience in healthcare finance transactions.
IP Litigation (USPTO and IL bar required for some of these positions)
IP Litigation practices remain very busy in Chicago firms and this is an area where we continue to see steady demand. We would like to speak with junior associates with 1-4 years of experience in life sciences/pharmaceutical litigation, with a background in biology, molecular biology, immunology, pharmacology, biochemistry or chemistry and associates with 1-5 years of experience in patent litigation and a background in electrical engineering. Our clients are also requesting associates with 3+ years of experience in patent litigation and a background in electrical engineering, mechanical engineering, computer science, physics, chemistry or materials science.
Chicago firms continue to seek out highly skilled patent prosecution associates. We would like to speak with junior patent prosecutors with 1-5 years of experience and a background in electrical, chemical or mechanical engineering. Candidates with 2-7 years of experience in patent prosecution and advanced degrees in electrical engineering or computer science should contact our Chicago office.
We are interested in speaking with trademark associates with 2+ years of experience in trademark prosecution and enforcement. We would also like to speak with associates with 3-5 years of experience in trademark litigation, counseling, clearance and domain name disputes.
Real Estate – Acquisitions and Dispositions; Finance; Leasing; Joint Venture; Title and Survey
Firms continue to contact us for skilled commercial real estate associates, although we have not seen a significant increase in demand in this area since our last report. Associates with 1-4 years of experience in leasing, acquisition, disposition, joint venture, finance and lending transactions should reach out to us. We would also be interested in speaking with more senior level real estate associates with anywhere from 5-7 years of experience drafting leases, purchase and sale contracts and handling title and survey clearances.
There was a decline in the need for labor and employment associates here in Chicago last year. However, we would be interested in speaking with labor and employment associates with 2-5 years of experience in employment litigation matters.
Reflecting their busy corporate transactional practices, Chicago firms also have a need for associates with strong employee benefits skills. Associates with 1-3 years of experience handling executive compensation, welfare and qualification retirement plans and the employee benefit aspects of M&A transactions should contact our Chicago office. We would also like to speak with associates with 2-4 years of experience handling executive compensation matters, ERISA Title I issues, and welfare benefit programs. (A background in accounting or consulting is a plus.)
The need for trusts and estates associates has remained constant in Chicago firms. Junior associates with 2+ years of experience in estate planning matters should contact our Chicago office. We would also like to speak with mid- to senior level trusts and estates associates with at least 3+ years of estate planning experience. More senior level trusts and estate associates with 5+ years of experience and an LL.M. in tax should reach out to our Chicago office.
State of the Market Report: Indiana by BCG Attorney Search
Indianapolis remains generally the same for the winter. There has been an uptick in General and Commercial Litigation. Otherwise, the slow summer and fall months have carried over into the winter season. The posted opportunities from last quarter carry over into the following practice areas: Corporate, Patent Prosecution, Bankruptcy, Employee Benefits, Health Care, Trusts and Estates, Commercial Litigation, Real Estate and Government Contracts. While there are only a few firms looking for lateral attorneys without portable business, Indy seeks more partners with portable business than lateral associates.
If you are a partner with portable business, please call our Chicago office.
State of the Market Report: Detroit Metro Area, Michigan by BCG Attorney Search
Michigan’s hot practice area over the summer was litigation, especially general and commercial litigation. Since then, as of this quarter, general and commercial litigation has fallen to a single-digit job count. All other practice areas within the Detroit metro area have dropped to single-digit job counts despite enjoying a robust Q3 local economy in the legal sector. Also remaining flat are Insurance Defense and Insurance Litigation, both of which had similar single-digit job count numbers over the summer.
Partners with Portable Business
Large Detroit area firms prefer partners with at least $1M in business while smaller firms will consider far less. If you are a partner or part of a group, and have an interest practicing in the Detroit (including the Bloomfield Hills, Southfield, Novi, Troy, Royal Oak, Lansing area), please give us a call at the BCG Chicago office.
While litigation remained strong over the summer in many states’ practice areas, Michigan notwithstanding, we have seen less demand for the practice area over the winter quarter. The firms that are looking are seeking associates with 3+ years of litigation experience or those with personal injury protection claims experience.
State of the Market Report: Minneapolis/Saint Paul by BCG Attorney Search
Winter marks the conclusion of what’s been an overall strong year for the Twin Cities market. There has been an increase in Trusts and Estates hiring, and a strong hiring wave in IP. The Minneapolis/Saint Paul area has also seen increased growth in litigation work and also additional needs in employment law.
Partners with Ties to the Twin Cities
Partners with portable business located in or interested in relocating to the Twin Cities should feel free to reach out to the Chicago office of BCG Attorney Search. Those with 300k+ of portable business will find themselves marketable to smaller and mid-sized firms, where those with books of $1M or larger may be competitive at the largest firms in the area. We have experience aiding partners in all stages of the placement process.
There’s been a strong uptick in commercial litigation within the Twin Cities, and this need only continues to grow. Salaries, however, are still not as high as they once were, although the slow and steady growth of this sector continues to encourage attorneys and law firms alike.
Intellectual Property is doing well in the Minneapolis/Saint Paul area. We continue to see needs in life sciences and electrical engineering/computer science at both the associate and partner levels.
Employment and labor law remain unchanged since summer. The most marketable have both employment litigation and counseling experience, and occasionally employers also ask for traditional labor work, but it is not always necessary.
State of the Market Report: Missouri by BCG Attorney Search
Things have slowed down in the city beneath the Gateway Arch, Saint Louis. The heated uptick in litigation from summer has cooled off dramatically to a low job count. In fact, all legal sectors within Saint Louis are now at a single-digit low count, including practice areas such as Real Estate, General Corporate and General/Commercial Litigation, the three of which reached multiple job count numbers over the summer.
Partners with Portable Business
Demand for partners seems to have flattened in the recent quarter in many practice areas. Nonetheless, partners with business of at least $250k should feel free to call BCG’s Chicago office to discuss options and strategy for the Saint Louis area. We are happy to help you develop a business plan.
Unlike summer when we saw an increase demand for Litigators in Saint Louis as compared with the rest of the country, that increase appears to have evaporated. Real Estate Litigation, Family Law Litigation, Insurance Defense Litigation, and Commercial Litigation, especially at the larger firms, have tapered off, though some legal work is still available within the region.
Demand for Patent Prosecution associates has also slowed within the Saint Louis area, including those with electrical or computer engineering degrees. As in the summer, prosecutors looking in this area should have several years of prosecuting patents at a reputable law firm or company, and samples of their work.
State of the Market Report: Ohio by BCG Attorney Search
State of the Market Report: Utah by BCG Attorney Search
Salt Lake City is experiencing a significant increase in job openings for Commercial and General Litigation. This includes Government/White Collar Defense as well as other practice areas within the realm of litigation.
Real Estate and Corporate continue with the same amount of open jobs as it had in Q3, while legal jobs focused on the energy and oil sectors remain the same as they were during the summer.
State of the Market Report: Wisconsin by Jamie Bailey, Partner, BCG Attorney Search - Chicago
Milwaukee and Madison
Partners with Portable Business
If you are a partner with portable business, we would be interested in speaking with you. Firms in these markets are generally looking for a minimum of $750,000 in portable business. Partners seeking to make a move in this market should contact our Chicago office.
Milwaukee and Madison law firm offices are hiring lateral associates in the following practice areas:
We would be interested in speaking with litigation associates with 1-3 years of experience in products liability matters. We would also like to speak with associates with 3+ years of experience in complex litigation matters.
Patent prosecution practices in Wisconsin firms remain very busy. We would be interested in speaking with patent prosecution associates with 2+ years of experience and backgrounds in mechanical engineering, industrial engineering, electrical engineering, physics or computer science. Candidates with niche experience in Internet technologies, communication systems, wireless systems, or computer hardware and software should contact our Chicago office. We would also like to speak with candidates who have experience working with mechanical and electromechanical technologies and software applications. Trademark associates with 1-2 years of experience handling trademark, copyright and advertising matters should also reach out to us.
Similar to the last report, we have not seen a marked increase in the need for corporate associates at firms in Madison and Milwaukee. However, we would like to speak with transactional associates with 3+ years of experience in M&A and securities regulation transactions. We are also interested in hearing from more junior-level associates with 2-4 years of experience in general corporate and M&A transactions. Firms are also contacting us for corporate and debt finance associates with 3+ years of experience.
There has been a slight decline in the need for labor and employment associates in Madison and Milwaukee firms. More senior level labor and employment associates with 5+ years of labor and employment experience handling state and federal laws, discovery, and case preparation before state and federal agencies and courts should contact us to discuss opportunities in Wisconsin.
Trusts and estates associates with 3+ years of experience in estate planning and administration, business succession planning and working with high net worth individuals in connection with estate and gift tax planning should get in touch with our Chicago office.
The market for lateral associates in the areas of Corporate, Intellectual Property, and Real Estate continues to be strong, and the demand for Litigators slower but steady. Very slow practices include Tax, ERISA, and Bankruptcy.
Intellectual Property groups in Boston almost always remain busy. Patent Prosecutors are in higher demand than Patent Litigators, but the need for Patent Litigators does remain healthy in Boston. Those with a life sciences background – particularly organic chemistry, biotechnology, and biochemistry – are in high demand, especially for those with 2-5 years of experience. The demand for associates with electrical engineering, computer science, and mechanical engineering backgrounds has increased as well.
Registration with the USPTO is almost always a requirement and all firms prefer advanced degrees.
The need for Corporate associates with strong academic and firm credentials continues to be strong. Corporate associates who are at the traditional “sweet spot” for lateral hiring – at the 3-5 year level – are in high demand but, so, too, are more senior folks with 5-7 years’ experience. Firms are also interested in junior candidates with 1-2 years of experience because they have enough work. M&A, private equity, investment management, and capital markets work are all strong in Boston.
The Real Estate market is still healthy in Boston. Associates in greatest demand are those with between 2-6 years of experience, but there are also some openings for more senior folks with 7-8 years of experience. Candidates sought have experience in Real Estate Investment Funds and Capital Markets, Acquisitions/Dispositions, and/or Leasing and Development, with the need for associates with Real Estate Finance experience being slightly greater.
Tax remains very slow; there are only two Tax openings. The demand in this area is for a mid-level associate with firm experience in the transactional area. The number of openings for ERISA and Employee Benefits associates is also very small; currently, there are two openings for those with an ERISA background. The demand here is for junior to mid-level associates. The demand for senior Bankruptcy associates, or partners with substantial business, is as low as the need for Tax and ERISA associates.
The market in Boston is typically indicative of the New England market at large. The same practices that are strong in Boston – intellectual property, corporate, and real estate – are strong in New England. As Tax and ERISA remain slow in Boston, they are also slow practice areas in New England as a whole.
State of the Market Report: New York City by Jessica Portela, Recruiter, BCG Attorney Search
New York, one of the leaders in lateral attorney hires, continues to be an active market this quarter. The corporate and litigation markets top the charts, with most of the large firms interested in junior to mid-level associates. Other hot practice areas include Real Estate and Employment.
Once again the Litigation market in New York is strong. However, securing a Litigation job is still quite difficult as firms are looking for extremely talented candidates with top law firm experience and excellent academic credentials. Senior litigators with a modest book of business have a better chance of breaking into the New York market than those that don’t; however most firms still prefer junior skills altogether. Construction and Employment Litigation openings are also on the rise.
The Corporate market in New York is one of the steadiest in the nation. Firms are most attracted to attorneys with General Corporate and Capital Markets experience. Associates with regulatory experience are also in demand. Corporate M&A, both public and private, continues to be a solid practice area as well, with a lot of competition among candidates. Corporate candidates with backgrounds in healthcare are especially marketable, as demand for this type of practice is growing in New York.
IP is the next most active market in New York. Openings in both the prosecution and the litigation side have remained steady since last quarter. We have seen openings in Trademark & Copyright, especially in the enforcement space, and in Patent Litigation. PatentProsecution in New York is generally concentrated in medium-sized and small firms, and candidates with strong technical backgrounds, especially in engineering, are particularly sought after by both large firms and boutique firms. Similarly, Technology Transaction associates are in demand in New York and top firms with strong practices in this area are going to be interested in a mid-level associate with this type of expertise, especially with top firm training. Experience with licensing agreements, outsourcing arrangements and software development agreements would be especially appealing in this market.
Real Estate remained steady in New York this quarter. Candidates with experience in acquisition and disposition, leasing development and joint ventures are most marketable. Candidates with solid finance experience are also in demand.
Employment/ERISA and Tax/Trust and Estates
The market for Employment attorneys remains solid, with many firms in need of associates with ERISA experience, especially with top large firm training. Similarly, the Trust & Estates and Tax markets in New York and New Jersey have continued to be strong. This is an area where senior attorneys with more experience fare well, especially candidates with an LL.M.
Although one would expect Bankruptcy to be slow, considering the solid corporate market, it actually remained steady this quarter. Candidates with debtor, lender, and creditor experience are most coveted.
State of the Market Report: Philadelphia by BCG Attorney Search
Philadelphia continues to be an attractive city for attorneys and we are seeing the market become more competitive than it has previously been with attorneys looking to relocate.
The Litigation market in Philadelphia remains slow just as it was in Q3. The smaller firms in the area, however, do have more needs for attorneys, so if you are considering making a switch to a smaller firm, Philadelphia may be an interesting market for you.
Most openings are looking for mid-level attorneys with 2-5 years of experience.
Corporate and Real Estate needs continue to be steady in Philadelphia, but the intellectual property market – usually a strong one in Philly – remains unchanged with some needs in both Trademark and Patent Prosecution. The same is true for Tax/Trust and Estates where we see little need in Philadelphia for attorneys with this type of expertise.
State of the Market Report: Washington, D.C. by BCG Attorney Search
The legal job market in Washington, DC remains healthy and growing this winter, even into the holiday season. Now would be a very good time for attorneys with their eyes on DC to investigate open prospects.
Demand remains highest for specialty litigation mid-levels and IP associates as well as general corporate and investment funds associates. Real estate has also become a hot practice area for associates.
International trade and ERISA/executive compensation have also become popular practice areas within DC, as well as immigration and insurance coverage.
Practice Areas with High Demand:
Litigation – Litigation continues to be one of the most active practice area in DC. Candidates with at least two years of specialized experience will often have a couple of opportunities to choose from. While the market is competitive, firms are looking to meet with associates that have unique skills. Mid-senior associate candidates with interesting and hands-on general litigation experience can also usually find solid litigation opportunities at big law firms.
Intellectual Property - Every facet of IP from physics to molecular biology is in need of attorneys. Of course, competition for these positions remains as fierce as it was during summer when many associates quickly made their move after there were so few opportunities to do so in the recent past.
Mid-level associate candidates with 2-6 years of experience in the following practice areas are needed:
IP Patentareas also grew in popularity since summer in:
The IP needs in DC range across everything IP-related. There has been an increased need for Trademark and IP Transactions needs. On the IP-Trans side, firms are looking for associates with life science and technology licensing experience.
Mid-senior associates who can draft full trademark opinion letters and advise clients regarding the use of trademarks continue to be in demand.
Corporate - We are seeing a decent number of Corporate openings for associates with at least 2 to 6 years of corporate law experience. Firms are seeking candidates that have experience in these areas:
M & A
Securities and capitals market
Firms continue to be on the hunt for associates with strong data security and privacy skills. This is a booming practice for which there are not enough associates with the required experience to fill the position’s needs.
Practice Areas with Growth Potential:
Labor & Employment - The Labor & Employment market in DC has been consistently producing job opportunities for junior and senior level attorneys over the past year. Junior and counsel level L&E positions remain open for employment counseling, labor and litigation practices. There are a few attorney openings for L&E attorneys.
Health Care– Health Care tapered off somewhat for the winter. Candidates with at least 2-6 years of health care experience in Medicare/Medicaid, health care fraud and abuse laws including Anti-Kickback Statute, Stark and False Claims Act will continue to receive interview opportunities and job offers.
Real Estate – Real Estate has grown substantially since the summer quarter. This is good for attorneys looking to make a lateral move from other large cities such as Boston, Chicago, and New York.
Practice Areas That Are Holding Steady:
Tax – No significant increases or decreases have been seen within Tax.
Practice Areas with Little Growth:
Other practice areas including other IP practice areas remain steady. Associates are still needed to fill open positions.
State of the Market Report: Atlanta by Jennifer McNeil, Recruiter, BCG Attorney Search
Corporate is by far the hottest practice area in Atlanta. Most of the current Corporate openings are for mid-level associates with experience in M&A, banking and finance, fund formation, securities, private equity, or capital finance experience. Firms are also looking for junior associates with corporate experience or partner candidates with portable business of at least $500,000. Experience is the most important factor for firms, and they are willing to consider associate candidates who are not currently located in Atlanta. It is definitely a great time to make a lateral move in corporate law.
Technology Transactions and Data Privacy are hot practice areas in Atlanta, and firms here are looking for attorneys with every level of experience. Of special interest are associates with at least a year of direct experience, which is more important than credentials.
Steady Practice Areas:
Labor and Employment picked up at the end of the year and hopefully will continue to do so going into 2018. There are several new openings for mid-level Employment associates, particularly for those with both litigation and counseling experience. For junior associates, firms are willing to consider Litigation associates who would like to switch practice areas, especially for candidates coming from large firms.
Intellectual Property is a strong practice area in Atlanta. Most of the current openings are for Patent Prosecutors with electrical engineering or computer science backgrounds. There are also openings for mid-level associates with biotechnology and pharmaceutical experience. USPTO registration is critical; many firms will not even consider a lateral candidate until they have the patent bar. Patent Litigation is slow, and firms prefer associates who can do both litigation and prosecution.
Litigation continues to be a slow practice area in Atlanta. Most of the current openings are with local and regional firms, particularly for associates with civil litigation experience. For the commercial litigation openings, top credentials are absolutely required, including large law firm experience, law review, judicial clerkship, and admission to the Georgia bar.
Real Estate slowed down considerably in 2017, with very few current openings even in 2018. There are a couple of small firms looking for residential real estate closing attorneys. Most of the larger firms are not looking for commercial real estate associates now. For those that are looking, firms are looking for associates with direct experience in real estate transactions and finance. Firms also like to see traditional real estate experience in acquisition, disposition, development, joint ventures, and leasing.
Atlanta firms are always happy to consider lateral candidates with solid books of portable business, and will frequently consider candidates in any practice area on a prospective basis. If you are considering a lateral move in Atlanta, please get in touch with BCG to see what your prospects might be.
State of the Market Report: North Carolina by Jennifer McNeil, Recruiter, BCG Attorney Search
Charlotte is the largest legal market in North Carolina. As always, most of the openings are for Corporate associates with banking, finance, and capital markets experience. There are some new Litigation openings for banking related litigation. In Raleigh and the Research Triangle, the strongest practice area is Intellectual Property, especially for Patent Prosecutors with electrical engineering or biotech backgrounds.
Litigation continues to be a slow practice area throughout North Carolina. Some local and regional firms are looking for mid-level associates, primarily with civil litigation experience. There are very few openings for associates interested in complex commercial litigation.
Corporate is a strong practice area in Charlotte, particularly for junior to mid-level associates with large law firm experience in banking, finance, capital markets, and regulatory law.
Intellectual Property law is a hot practice area in Raleigh and the Research Triangle. The most sought-after associates are those with hard science backgrounds, especially electrical engineering or computer science. There are also a few postings for IP attorneys with life sciences backgrounds, particularly biotechnology. Some experience with patent prosecution and USPTO registration are essential.
State of the Market Report: Louisiana by Suzanne Dupree Howe, Managing Director for Texas and the Southeast, BCG Attorney Search
The overriding need in Louisiana for 2017 was Litigation. Litigation in toxic torts is very much in-demand. We also saw a handful of Employment needs, as well as ERISA Litigation. Candidates considering a move to Louisiana should begin getting the Louisiana Bar taken care of, as it’s imperative.
State of the Market Report: Tennessee by Suzanne Dupree Howe, Managing Director for Texas and the Southeast, BCG Attorney Search
I think the word to describe the market in Tennessee is varied. We have a number of needs in a wide variety of practice areas!
We currently have a number of needs in Healthcare in both Nashville and Tennessee. This is always a hot area in Tennessee, as Healthcare is one of the top industries in the state. We have also had consistent Employee Benefits needs throughout 2017.
Corporate and Real Estate attorneys are both in demand, which is a reflection of the excellent growth the state has had since the recession.
State of the Market Report: Texas by Suzanne Dupree Howe, Managing Director for Texas and the Southeast, BCG Attorney Search
The Texas Legal Market is doing well as we head into 2018. While Houston took a big pause on hiring after Hurricane Harvey, we hear from most of our clients that they are back to business and barely took a breath, particularly in the corporate market. 2017 was a terrific year for Dallas, which saw gains in larger out-of-state firms coming to town and with a robust transactional and litigation market. As we head into 2018, we expect Dallas to remain one of the better legal markets in the country and the overall Texas legal market to remain strong.
This has been a hotter area in Dallas recently, with a number of boutique firms having needs. We have not seen as many needs with the larger firms.
This was a healthy area in Texas in 2017, with a marked increase in needs from 2016. While we have seen our usual demand for EE’s and Computer Science throughout 2017, we have had a very healthy demand for Patent Prosecution attorneys with a Chemical background. 2018 is an excellent time for our chemical practitioners to explore a job change.
A harbinger of our current economy, the Bankruptcy market is very weak in Texas in 2018 so far. We also saw very, very few needs in 2017.
This has been a very strong area in both Houston and Dallas throughout 2017. We have particularly seen a number of needs for syndicated finance recently. As we head into 2018, we still have a dozen finance openings throughout Texas.
Energy and Project Finance
We continue to have strong needs with a lot of the larger firms in Houston in Transactional Energy, despite a years-long slow-down last year in the Energy market overall.
Labor and Employment
Employment has been a hot area across the US for several years, and that trend has been apparent in Texas, as well. We still have needs at all sizes of firms in Texas this year, from large firms to smaller firms. While the needs are not truly abundant, they have been consistent.
Tax has been relatively slow in 2017 in Texas, though we have seen some needs in the Dallas area. Since the tax reform has now passed, this area is guaranteed to heat up in 2018.
This has remained one of the hotter areas across the country. Texas has followed this trend, albeit not with as much demand as some other areas of the country.
State of the Market Report: Florida by BCG Attorney Search
The Florida market continues to be slow compared to the rest of the country, with few large firms hiring at any given time. There is more of a market for malpractice and insurance defense litigation here versus any other area. Intellectual Property in Florida is all but non-existent with one or two openings across the board at any given time. There is some interest in corporate attorneys, especially a strong M&A associate, more commonly in the Miami area. Tampa continues to be an extremely slow market in all practice areas with almost no larger firms looking for associates for quite some time now. Orlando is steady but not strong. Naples, Jacksonville and Tallahassee have more movement at the small firm level.
The Litigation market in Florida is most active in medical malpractice, consumer financial services, and insurance defense. A general or employment litigation position at top firms has come out in the last quarter, but only at one or two firms, and competition for such roles is extremely high. In the last half of the year, there have only been a handful of openings throughout the entire state looking for general litigation experience and a dearth of openings at the large national law firms. Where we do see Litigation openings, it tends to be at small to mid-sized offices or solo-practitioners and as noted, in the areas/subjects discussed above.
Corporate has remained steady in Florida with a handful of openings at top firms across the state, but mostly in Miami and here or there in Orlando. Many firms in Florida are looking for partners with over $500,000 in business in this practice area as well as Real Estate, and if this is your background, you could likely get a significant amount of interest. Firms are more focused on business rather than associate moves at this juncture. In Miami, Corporate openings typically are looking for language skills, especially Spanish and Portuguese.
Real Estate in Florida appears to be steady and potentially one of the stronger markets besides insurance defense/medical malpractice litigation at smaller firms. Firms are looking for real estate transactional associates with experience in leasing, community association issues, and lending and financing issues. The “sweet” spot seems to be for junior or mid-level associates who have prior firm experience. Real Estate Litigation experience, however, is not needed right now – the openings generally tend to be on the transactional side.
The Intellectual Property market in Florida is extremely slow. Patent Prosecution and Litigation as well as Trademark and Copyright Litigation openings are basically non-existent except for one or two openings at any given time, and at smaller firms, typically requiring portable business. The licensing and technology transactional market also does not have any movement in Florida. It is a very slow time to be an Intellectual Property lawyer on the move in or to Florida.
ERISA/Employment and Tax/Trust and Estates
This market is steady but not hot. There are openings in Tax, T&E and ERISA, including at larger firms, but they are very competitive and are looking for the mid-level associate sweet spot with top firm experience who has the Florida bar. A strong employment or ERISA candidate (ERISA on the transactional side only) might want to explore the market at this time in Florida.
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