US Top 50 in London

These US firms aren’t making enough money in London

To be in the global law market requires a strong City presence, of that there can be no doubt. The Lawyer’s US 50 report underscores just how vital London is; the multimillion-pound investments being made by US titans shows that growing in the City is not only advantageous, but essential. And yet. You might be surprised […]


The $20m lawyers have arrived

$20m partners are rare, but they are multiplying. Paul Weiss, Kirkland, Davis Polk, Weil Gotshal and latterly Latham are reshaping their partner compensation for the big figure, stretched upwards from the $9m that Paul Weiss paid for Scott Barshay in 2016. As The Lawyer reported yesterday, even Cleary – Cleary! – is now considering it. […]


Paul Weiss’ Soho home is getting full

If everyone puts their feet up for the rest of the year, Paul Weiss will feature above Covington, Morgan Lewis and Cleary Gottlieb in The Lawyer’s next iteration of its US 50 rankings based on headcount. That’s based on Paul Weiss’ current list of London lawyers, which numbers 117 when including some partners who are […]

It’s not all rosy for the US mid-market firms

American firms in London have seen a sharp slowdown in their City headcount growth rate, according to The Lawyer’s latest US 50 report. After the last five years saw the US firms reliably adding some 300 to 800 lawyers to their ranks annually, 2023 brought on all of 22 additional lawyers to the overall mix. […]


The other Paul firm has taken a breather

There are two very large US firms out there with the name Paul in their title – and both have their own London expansion story to tell. While Paul Weiss has really revved up its efforts over the past year, Paul Hastings has taken a moment to reflect on what it has achieved. Over 2023, […]


The first $1bn US firm in the City is almost here

Military historians know all about the idea of a war on two fronts but they’re not the only specialists familiar with the concept. Over the past decade, more than a few leaders of UK law firms may also have felt doubly embattled, tasked with defending their home patch from overseas-headquartered firms that also regularly pinch […]

Just look at what Cleary is doing

Competition lawyers at UK firms can look away now. Of the 17 Competition & Markets Authority (CMA) Phase 2 merger investigations that were active in 2023, one firm’s London antitrust team advised on seven. Basic maths suggests it shouldn’t be a surprise that this is significantly more than any other firm. What is less obvious […]


Some partners like to move more than others

Having lost the money race to their US counterparts, traditional UK firms are clinging on to the fact that they can offer something else: longevity. More specifically, that’s lawyer longevity and the ability for people to spend a large proportion of their career at the firm at which they trained. There are countless partners at […]


The delusions of McDermott and Perkins Coie

The scene: A US firm boardroom, somewhere not in New York*. Big Cheese (furiously): ‘We’re not growing fast enough. What have you got?’ Smaller Cheese (panicking): Private equity! That’s the thing! Kirkland! Paul Weiss!’ Big Cheese: ‘Do whatever it takes. And do it now.’ Smaller Cheese: ‘Leave it with me. We’ll hire big in London. […]

budget money cash

The three booming US firms that aren’t Paul Weiss

Some US firms in London tend to get all the headlines, and as you know who they are, we won’t bother namechecking them again. But there are others, a tad more under the radar, that have had a barnstorming year in 2023 and whose time in the limelight is now. Such as Willkie Farr & […]

Money dollars

Paul Weiss has rewritten the playbook

Paul Weiss’ UK spending spree is far from over. Just a year ago, this firm was small fry among the US City titans. Cue an audacious carve-out of some of Kirkland & Ellis’ superstars last summer and everything changed. That initial raid (which included debt finance heavyweight Neel Sachdev and corporate star Roger Johnson) was […]

US 50 underscores tougher trading conditions in the City

Latham & Watkins has retained its position as the largest US-headquartered firm in the UK, with an estimated City growth rate of 4 per cent in 2022. Latham is thought to have generated $702m in London last year, the highest level of fee income ever achieved either by it or any US firm. However, the […]