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Legal Jobs > Law Firm Profiles > Alston & Bird LLP

Alston & Bird LLP



Contents
Overview
Areas of practice
Notable cases
Awards and recognitions
Hiring criteria
Diversity
Summer associate program
Salary & benefits
Working for the firm
Pro bono
In the news
Alston & Bird LLP

Alston & Bird LLP
Alston & Bird LLP
Main office One Atlantic Center, 1201 West Peachtree Street | Atlanta | GA | 30309
Email  
Website http://www.alston.com 
Phone 404-881-7000 
Fax 404-881-7777 
Year of establishment 1893
Number of offices 10
Largest office Atlanta
Number of attorneys 928
Number of associates 446
Number of partners 368
Partner: associate ratio 0.80
Percent women attorneys 34.10


Overview

Alston & Bird LLP is an international firm with a worldwide clientele. It has a wide range of practice areas that include corporate and finance, intellectual property, litigation, and tax. The firm still adheres to the values of its founders, of service to communities, mutual respect and hard work. Alston & Bird commenced its journey from Atlanta in 1893, a city that was recovering from a crippling civil war. Almost a 120 years down the line, the firm continues to solve worldwide legal problems, that include financing major expansions, resolving tax controversies with the IRS and defending lawsuits in the courtrooms, or protecting products from piracy and counterfeiting. Legendary golfer Bobby Jones, a grand slam winner, was a partner with the firm, and rights to his name are still protected by Alston & Bird The firm employs around 800 lawyers, policy advisors and patent agents and its clients include such illustrious names as Bank of America, Duke University, General Electric, and UPS. In the US it has offices in California, Brussels, Charlotte, Dallas, Los Angeles, Raleigh, Ventura County, Silicon Valley, North Carolina, New York, Texas, and Washington, DC, apart from its parent location in Atlanta and one in Brussells. The firm traces its roots to humble beginnings in 1893. The firm is recognized as one of the best place to work in America and ranked 24th on Fortune’s 2012 list of the top 100 companies to work for. Alston & Bird has gained its current standing and stature, thanks to its committed leadership, its exceptional lawyers, its steadfast adherence to core values and its strategic and calculated mergers that reinforced its strengths and enhanced practice areas. The firms history can be traced back to more than a century, when in 1893 it began its journey as Alston, Miller & Gaines’. The merger with Jones, Bird and Howell in December 1982 gave the firm a new name, Alston & Bird. Other mergers led to the establishment of an office in Washington, Silicon Valley, Los Angeles and Ventura County. Today the firm has upwards of 800 lawyers providing an array of services, to clients in America and abroad. When its partner Neal Batson was appointed by the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York as Examiner for Enron Corp. in 2002 it marked a significant selection in the history of the firm. It gave the firm national icon status, for its purposeful role in examining one of the most visible and followed corporate failures in American history. The appointment reinforced the firm’s level of excellence and its ethical reputation. The addition of former Senate Majority Leader Bob Dole to the firm’s Legislative & Public Policy Group gave Alston & Bird clients access to one of the nation’s most respected statesmen and experts on public policy. Alston & Bird’s distinctive customs, way of life and their long-lasting core values have been cherished for more than a century. They characterize the firm; define who they are, how they interrelate with their clients and indeed, with each other. From the founding of the firm in the late 1800s, collegiality, teamwork, loyalty, diversity, individual satisfaction, fairness and professional development have been guiding yardsticks with which the firm evaluates itself. Alston is proud of its history and heritage and ensures that every new day further day adds to its glory and prestige.
Areas of practice

  • Capital Markets/Mergers & Acquisitions
  • Energy & Sustainability
  • Financial Services
  • Global Finance
  • Healthcare
  • Intellectual Property
  • Legislative & Public Policy
  • Litigation
  • Real Estate Finance
  • Tax
  • International Work
Notable cases

  • Throughout its history, the firm has handled many significant, high-profile matters for its clients. Some of the more recent significant cases include:
  • Counsel to German media group Bertelsmann AG with Clifford Chance and Slaughter & May as UK co-counsel in Bertelsmann's $2.74 billion acquisition of Zomba Music Group in 2002
  • Represented Cingular Wireless in its purchase of 34 wireless licenses from NextWave Media in 2003
  • Advised Regions Financial Corporation alongside Sullivan & Cromwell in its purchase of Union Planters Corporation in 2004, a transaction valued at $5.8 billion
  • Issuer's counsel with Simpson Thacher & Bartlett for Assurance Insurance in its $2.024 billion IPO in 2004
  • Represented Koch Forest Products Inc., a subsidiary of Koch Industries, alongside Latham & Watkins in its $21 billion purchase of the Georgia-Pacific Corporation in 2005, a transaction valued at $21 billion
  • Advised longstanding client IndyMac, its executives and directors, the FBI investigation into the California bank's collapse in 2008. Alston also advised the bank on the transfer of its assets to government control under the auspices of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation
  • Representing Toyota in the economic loss class actions arising from the 2009-2010 Toyota vehicle recalls
Awards and recognitions

Alston & Bird is consistently ranked among the leading law firms in each of its central practice areas. Additionally, its lawyers are consistently recognized as industry leaders and ranked among the best practitioners worldwide.

More than 800 attorneys of the firm are in 10 major markets, representing world-class companies.
The Best Lawyers in America 2012 features 121 of Alston attorneys
Corporate Counsel's 2011 list of "Who Represents Corporate America" recognized Alston & Bird among the top 10 law firms in the country
The BTI Consulting Group, based on a survey of 150 major corporations about the law firms they use for corporate transactions ranked Alston & Bird 5th in the U.S. on its first "Masters of the Deal" list.
The 2011 American Lawyer's "Corporate Scorecard" ranked Alston & Bird #11 as "Counsel to Investment Advisor" in the Mergers & Acquisitions category based on transaction value.
Alston & Bird was named the "Best Corporate Law Firm" in Atlanta as determined by general counsel and directors from an independent survey by FTI Consulting
Alston & Bird is ranked #10 in the category of "2011 Banker Representation" in Corporate Control Alert's year-end issue.
330 litigators of the firm have handled cases in all 50 states and are featured prominently in the BTI Litigation Outlook 2011. The report, cited Alston & Bird among the 32 firms that clients would least like to see on the opposite side of the table and as one of a select group of law firms clients want most on their side in securities litigation.
Alston & Bird ranked 2nd in the nation for the most new U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) cases in 2010 in "Welcome to Patent Law's Hottest Venue" in the National Law Journal.
International Tax Review described Alston's tax practice as being "one of the best in North America." It's "World Tax 2012" ranked Alston & Bird as a leading tax firm in both New York and Washington, D.C.
Alston & Bird has been ranked on FORTUNE's "100 Best Companies to Work For" list for 13 consecutive years, including placement in the top 25 for nine years, four of which were in the top 10
Alston & Bird ranked 5th on the 2012 BTI Client Service 30 among U.S. law firms in providing superior client service. The ranking resulted from interviews with approximately 240 corporate counsels at Fortune 1000 companies
Alston & Bird has been named by Working Mother magazine as one of the 2009 "50 Best Law Firms for Women."Firms were evaluated according to workforce profile; family friendly benefits and policies; flexibility; leadership, compensation and advancement of women; and development and retention of women.
In the 2012 "Vault Guide to the Top 100 Law firms," Alston & Bird ranked 11th for overall diversity, 10th with respect to LGBT, and 8th with respect to minorities and 16th with respect to women.
Hiring criteria

The firm gives priority to students who have outstanding academic credentials in undergraduate and law school, if they have experience on law review or in moot court, all the more better. The firm says it looks for students with maturity, self-confidence, leadership ability and a serious commitment to the practice of law.

Resume should be simple, well-written and should contain requisite information. The firm says that they do not attach much importance to gimmicky presentation. To them substance not presentation matters.

Alston & Bird follows guidelines set forth by NALP on the timing of offers and decisions. Under those guidelines first-year law students may apply with the firm beginning on December 1st of each year.

Second-year law students should submit their cover letter, resume and transcript to the office where you desire to be hired, to schedule an interview.

The firm welcomes third-year law students and judicial clerks and asks them to submit a cover letter indicating their practice areas, preferred office location, resume and transcript to the Attorney Hiring contact in the office for which they have an interest.

The firm hires only that number of summer associates to whom they will be able to offer open positions.

The hiring committee makes every effort to respond to candidates within two weeks of their interview
Diversity

The firm embraces diversity at all levels and the only criteria that guide them in their selection is that they should be amongst the best in their fields. Alston & Bird promotes diversity both within the firm and in its community. Through its continued efforts it has maintained an open, receptive and nurturing work environment and a varied workforce of attorneys and staff.

The firm has a Diversity Committee that provides objectives and guidance and works to implement programs, events and sponsorships relative to their locations. The Diversity Task Force supports the firm's efforts by providing opportunities for learning through events, recognition and cultural celebration.

The firm bases its diversity efforts in five precise areas, recruiting, retention, mentoring, promoting diversity and communication.

The firm's commitment to diversity and inclusion is constant and unending. It continues to look for ways to improve the environment, developmental opportunities for its attorneys and staff, and mandatory diversity education programs.

The firm organizes a wide range of forums, seminars and workshops for its attorneys, staff and clients throughout the year, in an effort to promote and encourage diversity in its own ranks, in the legal profession and the community as a whole.
Summer associate program

Summer associates at Alston will find work fun, where they will interact with the firm's associates and partners in a mutually respectful atmosphere. Work here is a perfect amalgamation of good business judgment, lucidity, and cordiality. It will soon dawn upon the summer associates that the people who own, operate and are employed by the firm, really want to be here. Alston & Bird has a special culture that not only allows, but celebrates individuality, creativity and leadership.

From the moment the associate accepts the offer to be part of the firm's summer program; the firm takes him through a program that is designed with the associate's entire career path in mind. The firm does not merely perceive the associates' first, second and third years of law school but sees in them future partners, firm and community leaders, clients and mentors.
Salary & benefits

Alston & Bird takes pride in being an employer of choice, and the comprehensive benefit package provided to its attorneys confirms this commitment. It provides reimbursement of reasonable moving expenses for all entry-level associates and experienced attorneys. Reimbursement of bar expenses, including bar application fees, MPRE and a bar review course. Judicial clerkship bonus, a merit bonus program, four weeks of vacation annually , flexible work and pre-tax payroll deductions for parking and mass transit

The firm determines the amount of an associates bonus on number of hours billed, quality of work, pro bono hours, business developments and overall contribution to the firm's activities.

  • Y1 $0-$160,000.00
  • Y2 $0-$170,000.00

Benefits
  • 401(k)/IRA/Other Retirement Plan
  • Bar Association Fees
  • Business Casual Dress Code
  • Child Care Subsidy
  • CLE
  • Dental Insurance
  • Domestic Partner Benefits
  • Employee Assistance Program
  • Family/Dependent Care Leave
  • Flexible Spending Account/Pre-Tax Option
  • Life/AD&D
  • Long-term Care Insurance
  • Long-term Disability Insurance
  • Medical Insurance
  • Medical Spending Account
  • On-site Child Care - Emergency
  • Parental Leave
  • Parking/Transportation
  • Relocation Expenses
  • Sabbatical Program
  • Short-term Disability Insurance
  • Sick Leave
  • Technology (Laptop, PDA, etc.)
  • Vacation Leave
  • Vision Insurance

Benefits Package: Benefits Package: Cafeteria plan for medical, dental and vision benefits with no waiting period. Medical plans include a $25,000 infertility benefit. Medical opt out credits of up to $2400 per year. Benefits offered for same and opposite sex domestic partners and the firm provides gross up on the imputed income. Firm-paid life and disability insurance, bar dues for DC and one state, 4 weeks vacation, 3 months paid maternity leave, 3 weeks paid paternity leave and a professional development allowance. Adoption assistance, in-home elder care, in-home child care, child care while traveling, back-up child care, family referral service, employee assistance program, discounted corporate concierge service and 401(k) plan also offered. Attorney luncheons and annual retreats.
Working for the Alston & Bird LLP

The firm values its employees and chooses them very cautiously. The firm places value on academic excellence and seek individuals with a clear understanding of what the practice of law entails. The firm prefers candidates who best reflect their core values and unique culture.

Candidates can expect to work with the sharpest legal minds, lawyers from diverse backgrounds, varied social, cultural, civic and educational interests. Candidates are expected to demonstrate the same level of camaraderie and mutual respect for each other's talents that has existed since the firm's inception over a century ago.
Pro bono

The firm is passionate about its commitment to the communities in which it lives and works. Serving those in need occupies a central position in its culture, its business plan and in its heart.

Each week the firm's attorney spend considerable time defending civil rights in noteworthy cases, such as advocating for voiceless children, supporting asylum seekers, representing victims of domestic violence, and generally giving access to justice to those who would otherwise not receive it.

Throughout the year, the firm offers a variety of opportunities for its employees to positively influence their communities. From knitting blankets for homeless children and building Habitat for Humanity houses to driving cancer patients to treatment and sending care packages to troops overseas, Alston & Bird employees find tangible support from the firm for whatever causes move them to action. The main objective of their projects is to have immediate and long-term impact on organizations and individuals in the most need.

The firm's efforts have brought systematic changes in the legal system as well meaningful change in the lives of individuals. The firm's attorneys and staff serve on the boards of more than 400 nonprofit organizations in the communities where they do business and 37 nonprofit organizations gained new leadership in the past year.

At Alston & Bird states that they don't engage in pro bono work for the recognition, but that they are proud when their work is recognized, as it is their work that makes a difference to the community and in the lives of those in need.
In the news

References

http://www.alston.com/
http://www.lawfirmstats.com/
http://www.nalpdirectory.com/
http://www.wikipedia.org/
http://www.vault.com/
http://careers.abovethelaw.com/
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