What Is The Highest Paid Law Firm?

Have you ever wondered how much the highest-paid law firm makes in revenue? Many law firms like The Medlin Law Firm performed very well in 2021. However, 2021 was especially memorable for the highest-paid law firms in the country. Below is a list of these law firms.

Kirkland & Ellis

The law firm Kirkland & Ellis, based in New York City, was founded in 1909 by Robert R. McCormick and Stuart G. Shephard. Before the 2010s, Kirkland & Ellis mainly focused on litigation, especially commercial litigation. However, since the 2010s, the firm has expanded its focus to restructuring, intellectual property, and transactional practice areas. 

The firm also boasts a long list of alumni who’ve gone on to hold influential positions within the American government. Examples include former Attorney General William Barr and the current associate justice of the US Supreme Court, Brett Kavanaugh.

The law firm is currently the largest in the United States regarding revenue. Data from Am Law 100 shows that in 2021, Kirkland & Ellis earned $6,042,000,000 in gross revenue. A 25% increase from the previous year. The firm’s profit per equity partner stood at $7,388,000. Kirkland & Ellis operates 18 offices and has employed over 2,700 attorneys.

Latham & Watkins

The ‘Global Law Firm Of The Year’ winner at the 2021 PFI Awards, Latham & Watkins, was founded in 1943 by Dana Latham and Paul Watkins. The major practice areas that Latham &Watkins focuses on include banking and finance, litigation, mergers and acquisitions, and corporate law. 

Today, Latham & Watkins operates 28 offices across the US, Asia-Pacific, Middle East, and Europe. And according to the firm’s website, they’ve hired over 3000 lawyers who speak over 60 global languages. 

In 2021, Latham & Watkins earned a gross revenue of  $5,488,778,00, a 27% increase from 2020. The profit per equity partner of Latham & Watkins, which saw an increase of 26%, stood at $5,705,000. 

DLA Piper

In 2005 the merger between DLA LLP, Piper Rudnick LLP, and Gray Cary Ware & Freidenrich LLP led to the formation of a global law firm named DLA Piper. However, the firm can trace its roots back to 1764, when the law firm Barnard & Bolland was formed in Leeds. DLA Piper offers legal services in the following fields 

  • Corporate
  • Employment 
  • Finance
  • Intellectual property and technology
  • Private equity
  • Litigation, arbitration and investigations
  • Investment management and funds
  • Real estate
  • Restructuring
  • Projects, energy, and infrastructure
  • Tax

DLA Piper is currently operational in over 40 countries in the Americas, Africa, Asia-Pacific, Middle East, and Europe. To support the legal work done in these countries, the firm has hired over 4000 attorneys. 

In the financial year 2021, DLA Piper earned $3,471,437,000 in revenue, an increase of 11% from the previous financial year. To cap its impressive performance, the company also recorded a profit per equity partner of $2,496,000.

Baker McKenzie

Baker McKenzie is a multinational law firm that was founded in 1949 under the name Baker & McKenzie. The law firm enjoyed tremendous growth after it was founded. By 1955, Baker McKenzie had opened its first international satellite office in Caracas, Venezuela. And by 1958, other international offices had been opened in Sao Paulo, Zurich, Brussels, and Amsterdam. 

Today, Baker McKenzie has 77 offices in 46 countries on 6 different continents. The legal firm has also employed around 4800 attorneys and around 13,00 employees, making it the largest law firm in the United States. 

In 2021 the gross revenue of Baker McKenzie totalled $3,126,729,000. 2021’s gross revenue was an 8% increase from the previous year. It was the first time for Baker McKenzie to cross the 3 billion mark threshold. Further data shows that profit per equity partner was $1,833,000.

Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom

Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom, a global law firm known for its work handling mergers and takeovers, was formed in 1948. Its founders were Les Arps, Marshall Skadden, and John Slate. Then William Meagher joined the three founders in 1959 as a partner. And in 1960, the name of the firm was officially changed to Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom.

The work done by the firm in the 1960s and 1970s managing hostile takeovers in mergers and acquisitions set up the foundation for the explosive growth the firm enjoyed in the 1980s. 

The major practice areas that Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom handles include litigation, regulatory, and transactions. The firm has hired 1700 attorneys that operate in 21 offices in the US, France, Hong Kong, China, South Korea, Brazil, Canada, Singapore, Germany, and the UK. 

In 2021, Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom reported earned a gross revenue of $3,022,380,000. A 13% increase compared to 2020. The profit per equity partner for the firm was reported to be $5,088,000.

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