Why does everyone dump on Latham?

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Why does everyone dump on Latham?

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Sep 20, 2018 12:25 pm

I'm a 2L going to Latham next summer in one of the non-NY offices. I've found a lot of friends and people on TLS react very negatively when I tell them this. My question is: what do people have against Latham?

Sure, they fired a lot of first year associates. But that was 10 years ago in one of the worst recessions ever. It's highly unlikely we will ever have a recession like that again in our lifetimes. Also, they got so much backlash that they would never do it again. Latham is actually a safer firm in this way because they will be so self-conscious in the next recession.

The truth is, Latham is excellent. It's a V5 firm and only becoming more prestigious every year. It is also very strong in so many practice areas and has 12 Band 1 rankings nationwide on Chambers and Partners. Latham also has super strong offices in many different regions. Its IP litigation practice in D.C. for example is the best. It also has the best sports law practice in the country in its Century City office.

With all that in mind, why does Latham get so much hate?

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Re: Why does everyone dump on Latham?

Postby UsernameNotTaken » Thu Sep 20, 2018 12:29 pm

Nice try Latham recruiter.

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Re: Why does everyone dump on Latham?

Postby nerd1 » Thu Sep 20, 2018 12:36 pm

People don't dump on any particular firm. It's only when a certain poster (usually a 2L like yourself) doesn't have an accurate understanding of firms and Latham's reputation and writes a cringy, wrong post about the firm's culture and Vault rankings.

I would advise against associating your own self-image with your firm. Nobody really cares. Latham is not a Wachtell, Williams & Connolly or Susman. It's not even a Cravath or S&C for that matter. You are not going to impress anybody just by saying you work at Latham. It's just another top big firm.

Your post is immature and can reflect poorly on Latham as well. I would advise against writing posts like this.

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Re: Why does everyone dump on Latham?

Postby eastcoast_iub » Thu Sep 20, 2018 12:51 pm

Conversely, who are all these people that voted Latham over Davis Polk, STB and Kirkland in the latest Vault rankings?

That is patently absurd, you'd be foolish to take Latham over any of those firms.

http://www.vault.com/company-rankings/l ... w-100?pg=2

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Re: Why does everyone dump on Latham?

Postby DoveBodyWash » Thu Sep 20, 2018 1:21 pm

Anonymous User wrote:I'm a 2L going to Latham next summer in one of the non-NY offices....

The truth is, Latham is excellent. It's a V5 firm and only becoming more prestigious every year. It is also very strong in so many practice areas...

With all that in mind, why does Latham get so much hate?

Thank you satellite office 2L for clarifying lol

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Re: Why does everyone dump on Latham?

Postby nealric » Thu Sep 20, 2018 1:26 pm

eastcoast_iub wrote:Conversely, who are all these people that voted Latham over Davis Polk, STB and Kirkland in the latest Vault rankings?

That is patently absurd, you'd be foolish to take Latham over any of those firms.

http://www.vault.com/company-rankings/l ... w-100?pg=2


Have you taken the vault survey? It's literally just a long list of firms and an invitation to score each one on a 1-10 scale. Many of the people taking it are first and second year associates and don't know much about other firms beyond what they've heard at recruiting time.

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Re: Why does everyone dump on Latham?

Postby timbs4339 » Thu Sep 20, 2018 1:55 pm

nealric wrote:
eastcoast_iub wrote:Conversely, who are all these people that voted Latham over Davis Polk, STB and Kirkland in the latest Vault rankings?

That is patently absurd, you'd be foolish to take Latham over any of those firms.

http://www.vault.com/company-rankings/l ... w-100?pg=2


Have you taken the vault survey? It's literally just a long list of firms and an invitation to score each one on a 1-10 scale. Many of the people taking it are first and second year associates and don't know much about other firms beyond what they've heard at recruiting time.


Ive taken that survey. I skip that part. I just dont have the time and frankly havent had a ton of experience with more than 15-20 firms on the list (and then the limited pool of people I deal with at the firms I have worked with don't seem to have much correllation with the rankings). Although I recall when I took it they limited it to midlevels but I could be mixing it up with Amlaw.

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Re: Why does everyone dump on Latham?

Postby legalace » Thu Sep 20, 2018 2:14 pm

A Latham office is a great place to start if you do not mind:
1. Having your entire class at that office not offered partnership;
2. Being shown the door after six years; and
3. Receiving no real training or practical experience.

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Re: Why does everyone dump on Latham?

Postby nerd1 » Thu Sep 20, 2018 3:33 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
nealric wrote:
eastcoast_iub wrote:Conversely, who are all these people that voted Latham over Davis Polk, STB and Kirkland in the latest Vault rankings?

That is patently absurd, you'd be foolish to take Latham over any of those firms.

http://www.vault.com/company-rankings/l ... w-100?pg=2


Have you taken the vault survey? It's literally just a long list of firms and an invitation to score each one on a 1-10 scale. Many of the people taking it are first and second year associates and don't know much about other firms beyond what they've heard at recruiting time.


Ive taken that survey. I skip that part. I just dont have the time and frankly havent had a ton of experience with more than 15-20 firms on the list (and then the limited pool of people I deal with at the firms I have worked with don't seem to have much correllation with the rankings). Although I recall when I took it they limited it to midlevels but I could be mixing it up with Amlaw.


Actually the invitation to take the Vault survey gets sent to all associates. Unless you are having a quiet month, it's just a plain waste of time. I did fill out the survey and rated the firms because I wasn't busy at the time. It was a very dull experience being inundated with a list of firms 80% of which I had not heard of. The list that only contained firms in my city was more manageable and I have some idea about most of the firms in that list. I just didn't put much effort into it and I think nobody really does. Because at least at my firm midlevels and seniors are always busy, I would assume the Vault surveys are filled out mostly by juniors.

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Re: Why does everyone dump on Latham?

Postby eastcoast_iub » Thu Sep 20, 2018 4:10 pm

I understand how the survey works, have filled it out before, but how are all these people getting the impression Latham is more prestigious than those firms? Esp. since Lathaming has become a verb, you'd think that have them moving in the opposite direction.

Their PPP is crushed by the firms I mentioned.

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Re: Why does everyone dump on Latham?

Postby OneTwoThreeFour » Thu Sep 20, 2018 5:02 pm

Anonymous User wrote:It's a V5 firm and only becoming more prestigious every year.


:lol: :lol: :lol:

You aren't very bright are you?

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Re: Why does everyone dump on Latham?

Postby Wild Card » Thu Sep 20, 2018 5:13 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Nice try Latham recruiter.


Incredibly fucking pathetic. OP should be outed for abusing anon: then we'll all see that OP is a dozen-poast sockpuppet account created by Latham's shameless recruiting department just to pump up the shitty firm on this website.

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Re: Why does everyone dump on Latham?

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Sep 20, 2018 5:40 pm

Man,

I'm not the OP of this whole thread, but I am another 2L who's going to be summering at Latham, and I've got to say that this thread has gotten me feeling very down. I'm still excited to go to biglaw and I thought Latham would be a good place for me to be, but I never knew Latham was so hated by the TLS crowd. I get that Latham's not the most prestigious firm out there, but I don't think it's a shithole that doesn't even deserve to be in the v100. I may be fooling myself, though. I don't even know anymore.

Ultimately, I get the feeling from TLS that if you're not at K&E or something like that you might as well just quit law and go become a gas station manager. I know that's an obvious exaggeration, but it really does feel that way sometimes.

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Re: Why does everyone dump on Latham?

Postby dabigchina » Thu Sep 20, 2018 7:54 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Man,

I'm not the OP of this whole thread, but I am another 2L who's going to be summering at Latham, and I've got to say that this thread has gotten me feeling very down. I'm still excited to go to biglaw and I thought Latham would be a good place for me to be, but I never knew Latham was so hated by the TLS crowd. I get that Latham's not the most prestigious firm out there, but I don't think it's a shithole that doesn't even deserve to be in the v100. I may be fooling myself, though. I don't even know anymore.

Ultimately, I get the feeling from TLS that if you're not at K&E or something like that you might as well just quit law and go become a gas station manager. I know that's an obvious exaggeration, but it really does feel that way sometimes.

They look down on k&e too, so...

Ultimately, it's a bunch of law students and juniors parroting shit they saw other people post over the years. Lathams not the best firm, but it's far from the worst.

Incidentally, the anti-Latham rhetoric has been stronger than usual this recruiting cycle. I wouldn't be surprised if it were the same couple of people in different threads.

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Re: Why does everyone dump on Latham?

Postby eastcoast_iub » Thu Sep 20, 2018 7:57 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Man,

I'm not the OP of this whole thread, but I am another 2L who's going to be summering at Latham, and I've got to say that this thread has gotten me feeling very down. I'm still excited to go to biglaw and I thought Latham would be a good place for me to be, but I never knew Latham was so hated by the TLS crowd. I get that Latham's not the most prestigious firm out there, but I don't think it's a shithole that doesn't even deserve to be in the v100. I may be fooling myself, though. I don't even know anymore.

Ultimately, I get the feeling from TLS that if you're not at K&E or something like that you might as well just quit law and go become a gas station manager. I know that's an obvious exaggeration, but it really does feel that way sometimes.


By any objective measure, landing at Latham is a good spot for a law student and I wouldn't feel down that you are going there at all. You will still get high-quality work there and will be marketable, and of course it belongs in the Vault rankings. I'm just saying their Vault ranking is pretty far out of step with reality when it comes to prestige, they belong at least 10 spots lower.

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Re: Why does everyone dump on Latham?

Postby nerd1 » Thu Sep 20, 2018 8:12 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Man,

I'm not the OP of this whole thread, but I am another 2L who's going to be summering at Latham, and I've got to say that this thread has gotten me feeling very down. I'm still excited to go to biglaw and I thought Latham would be a good place for me to be, but I never knew Latham was so hated by the TLS crowd. I get that Latham's not the most prestigious firm out there, but I don't think it's a shithole that doesn't even deserve to be in the v100. I may be fooling myself, though. I don't even know anymore.

Ultimately, I get the feeling from TLS that if you're not at K&E or something like that you might as well just quit law and go become a gas station manager. I know that's an obvious exaggeration, but it really does feel that way sometimes.


Nobody denies the fact that Latham is a top firm. People who know better, like myself, are telling you that it is not the best firm in the world and that it is clearly not as prestigious as what the Vault rankings for this year says. As someone that took the survey, I would seriously lol if you take the Vault rankings this seriously. For instance, in New York, Cleary is more prestigious than Latham.

Also the fact that your firm is not in the group of most prestigious firms does not define you. You are just an employee of your firm. People get fired or pushed out by their firms all the time, and people lateral to different firms all the time.

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Re: Why does everyone dump on Latham?

Postby earlgreytea » Thu Sep 20, 2018 8:56 pm

When previous poster says "should be at least ten spots lower" could you elaborate? the deals? clients? what is it?

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Re: Why does everyone dump on Latham?

Postby 2013 » Fri Sep 21, 2018 2:44 am

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Man,

I'm not the OP of this whole thread, but I am another 2L who's going to be summering at Latham, and I've got to say that this thread has gotten me feeling very down. I'm still excited to go to biglaw and I thought Latham would be a good place for me to be, but I never knew Latham was so hated by the TLS crowd. I get that Latham's not the most prestigious firm out there, but I don't think it's a shithole that doesn't even deserve to be in the v100. I may be fooling myself, though. I don't even know anymore.

Ultimately, I get the feeling from TLS that if you're not at K&E or something like that you might as well just quit law and go become a gas station manager. I know that's an obvious exaggeration, but it really does feel that way sometimes.


Congrats on your Latham offer. Most of the posts ITT have been in response to OP's over-the-top Latham propaganda, like how Latham is guaranteed to never ever do another round of Lathamings; how Latham is "a V5 firm and only becoming more prestigious every year"; and by the way, what Latham did in '09 wasn't really so bad anyway: "sure, they fired a lot of first year associates, but that was 10 years ago"!

So posters have rightly been pushing back on OP's assertions. But no one ITT has gone to the other extreme, either: I haven't seen any remote suggestion that Latham "doesn't even deserve to be in the v100," or that law students should be "K&E or bust".

In the end, Latham's a very good firm, one of the best and most prestigious in the industry. Is its Vault ranking entirely accurate? No, I think it's absolutely wrong to have Latham ranked above Kirkland/Cleary/Simpson/Davis. But Latham's still a very good shop, and anyone heading there ought to be justifiably proud of their accomplishment.


“Kirkland/Cleary/Simpson/Davis”?

I think Latham being ranked ahead of Kirkland is at least justifiable. Kirkland hires median students all the time and when people rank firms on vault, they do take that into consideration. It’s debatable which is technically the “better” firm. I think Kirkland is better than Latham, but it’s laughable to put Kirkland in the same conversation as Cleary/STB/DPW.

There’s a lot of hate for Latham and other firms (Kirkland being one) on here because they’re huge firms with high profiles that more people have experience with. Joe Schmo tier 1 median student can’t say anything on STB because he can’t sniff it, but may have had a callback at Kirkland or Latham. So, he goes on TLS and asks “why does ____ get so much hate?”

And the rest of us on TLS point to lathamings and other garbage.

In the end, it doesn’t matter if you work at Latham or any of the top firms because you probably won’t make partner and, at the junior/early mid-level stage, you literally do the same thing. Exit options at a better firm are probably slightly better.

TL;DR: All top firms are the same. Doesn’t really matter where you end up because you won’t make (equity) partner. Latham is huge and a lot of people get offers, so it’s constantly mentioned. Same with Kirkland.

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Re: Why does everyone dump on Latham?

Postby wons » Fri Sep 21, 2018 7:36 am

The thing is, there’s not this strict hierarchy of firms like 2Ls think there is. Vault creates this hugely misleading impression, much like USNews law school rankings did before they went to “tiers” below the top group.

And Latham is really a fine firm. You last 6 years at Latham, your next job will be really good (and a hell of a lot better than the job of the Cravath guy who lasted 2 years ...)

The reason people crap on Latham, such that they do, is that it’s the one of the best names in the tier of “amorphous giant big law firms with strong transactional practices”, but it’s not the last firm that’s distinctively a bit better than that. To put it in law school terms, it’s like going to BC or Vandy for law school. Those are good law schools! You do well there, you can get hired by damn near any firm! If you act like you’re going to Harvard, people are going to roll their eyes . . .

To some extent, this is a blessing. Law school grades are pretty damn random outside of big chunks (I’m pretty sure a top quarter candidate is better than below median, but I don’t think there’s much value to a 3.4 over a 3.35). So if most law firms are kind of interchangable, and your future success is based more on your success as a practicing lawyer rather than your firm name, thats good and fair. When we get a midlevel candidate from, I dunno, Weil and Sidley, and both have otherwise similar resumes, the firm doesn’t really matter - at best it’s a pinky on the scale for Weil, but no more. Other factors matter so much more.

That being said, for transactional work, it is critical you are at a firm (and an office within the firm) that gets real deal flow for all sorts of transactional work. The big Latham offices check that box for sure.

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Re: Why does everyone dump on Latham?

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Sep 21, 2018 10:41 am

FWIW, I think Latham has more "prestige" on the west coast and is certainly the biggest fish in some of the secondary markets. Also, although it is highly dependent on practice group/partner you work for, IME Latham doesn't have many or any screamy/abusive people (at least not my office) and the people tend to be pretty laid back as far as biglaw goes. On average, facetime (at least outside of NYC) is on average, not required (barring a partner here or there who likes to have people in the office). That may be similar to other firms. My friends at some other LA/SF firms seem to report needing to be in the office more. Generally, I am happy that I chose Latham, been here a few years now, and I don't think any readers/posters should feel like they made a bad decision.

On the flip, I agree with most of these posters that Latham is generally a high-mid tier biglaw firm and peers with the V5-15 more or less and not at some ultra elite level. Probably interchangeable with a host of others on a broad level. Also, I don't know where the idea comes from that Latham wouldn't fire people again. When asked that question last year, pre-scandal Bill Voge essentially and openly said "I'd do it again." I don't think that anyone at Latham is under the illusion that there wouldn't be lay offs if a recession hits. The only saving grace is that they have reduced a lot of incoming class sizes since 2009 and work does seem to be hot right now. Obviously, that can all go in the shitter real quick.

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Re: Why does everyone dump on Latham?

Postby Thelaw23 » Fri Sep 21, 2018 12:39 pm

At least it's not as bad as the insane hate Quinn gets on these forums.

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Re: Why does everyone dump on Latham?

Postby nerd1 » Fri Sep 21, 2018 1:05 pm

Anonymous User wrote:The thing is, there’s not this strict hierarchy of firms like 2Ls think there is. Vault creates this hugely misleading impression, much like USNews law school rankings did before they went to “tiers” below the top group.

And Latham is really a fine firm. You last 6 years at Latham, your next job will be really good (and a hell of a lot better than the job of the Cravath guy who lasted 2 years ...)

The reason people crap on Latham, such that they do, is that it’s the one of the best names in the tier of “amorphous giant big law firms with strong transactional practices”, but it’s not the last firm that’s distinctively a bit better than that. To put it in law school terms, it’s like going to BC or Vandy for law school. Those are good law schools! You do well there, you can get hired by damn near any firm! If you act like you’re going to Harvard, people are going to roll their eyes . . .

To some extent, this is a blessing. Law school grades are pretty damn random outside of big chunks (I’m pretty sure a top quarter candidate is better than below median, but I don’t think there’s much value to a 3.4 over a 3.35). So if most law firms are kind of interchangable, and your future success is based more on your success as a practicing lawyer rather than your firm name, thats good and fair. When we get a midlevel candidate from, I dunno, Weil and Sidley, and both have otherwise similar resumes, the firm doesn’t really matter - at best it’s a pinky on the scale for Weil, but no more. Other factors matter so much more.

That being said, for transactional work, it is critical you are at a firm (and an office within the firm) that gets real deal flow for all sorts of transactional work. The big Latham offices check that box for sure.


Going to a big, well-known, prestigious but not super prestigious firm like Latham is more like going to a T14 law school that is not Harvard, Yale or Stanford. You are smart. You are an elite lawyer. But you cannot signal to others that you are one of the smartest or most elite young lawyers in the United States just by working at Latham.

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Re: Why does everyone dump on Latham?

Postby Fletch23 » Fri Sep 21, 2018 1:53 pm

nerd1 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:The thing is, there’s not this strict hierarchy of firms like 2Ls think there is. Vault creates this hugely misleading impression, much like USNews law school rankings did before they went to “tiers” below the top group.

And Latham is really a fine firm. You last 6 years at Latham, your next job will be really good (and a hell of a lot better than the job of the Cravath guy who lasted 2 years ...)

The reason people crap on Latham, such that they do, is that it’s the one of the best names in the tier of “amorphous giant big law firms with strong transactional practices”, but it’s not the last firm that’s distinctively a bit better than that. To put it in law school terms, it’s like going to BC or Vandy for law school. Those are good law schools! You do well there, you can get hired by damn near any firm! If you act like you’re going to Harvard, people are going to roll their eyes . . .

To some extent, this is a blessing. Law school grades are pretty damn random outside of big chunks (I’m pretty sure a top quarter candidate is better than below median, but I don’t think there’s much value to a 3.4 over a 3.35). So if most law firms are kind of interchangable, and your future success is based more on your success as a practicing lawyer rather than your firm name, thats good and fair. When we get a midlevel candidate from, I dunno, Weil and Sidley, and both have otherwise similar resumes, the firm doesn’t really matter - at best it’s a pinky on the scale for Weil, but no more. Other factors matter so much more.

That being said, for transactional work, it is critical you are at a firm (and an office within the firm) that gets real deal flow for all sorts of transactional work. The big Latham offices check that box for sure.


Going to a big, well-known, prestigious but not super prestigious firm like Latham is more like going to a T14 law school that is not Harvard, Yale or Stanford. You are smart. You are an elite lawyer. But you cannot signal to others that you are one of the smartest or most elite young lawyers in the United States just by working at Latham.


In terms of signaling for elite lawyers, I would agree with that sentiment for Midlevels. For summers and first years, even the most selective firms would admit they're guessing based on a combo of school + one year of grades.

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Re: Why does everyone dump on Latham?

Postby legalace » Fri Sep 21, 2018 2:37 pm

And Latham is really a fine firm. You last 6 years at Latham, your next job will be really good


What is your definition of "really good"? Bear in mind that if you are a litigator, your next job will be in a law firm, not in house.

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Re: Why does everyone dump on Latham?

Postby carsondalywashere » Fri Sep 21, 2018 7:52 pm

legalace wrote:
And Latham is really a fine firm. You last 6 years at Latham, your next job will be really good


What is your definition of "really good"? Bear in mind that if you are a litigator, your next job will be in a law firm, not in house.

:roll:



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