Dechert LLP.

Dechert LLP.

3 Star Rating     4 reviews 
Main Office:
Cira Centre, 2929 Arch Street | Philadelphia | PA | 19104
Phone: 215-994-4000  | Fax: 215-994-2222 

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Year of establishment 1875 Number of partners 281
Number of offices 26 Partner to associate ratio 0.60
Biggest office Philadelphia Percentage of women attorneys 31.60
Number of attorneys 905 Percentage of minority attorneys 7.80
Number of associates 474 Percentage of LGBT attorneys 2.10
Dechert LLP.
   4 reviews

Dechert LLP. Reviews

- Reviewed on March 10, 2018

Advice to law firm management: Work to improve relationships and opportunities for the advancement of your (very tiny) minority of people of color at the firm and your retention problems will improve. We leave because you are creating an environment where most of us don't feel welcome, and in some cases, we feel that certain partners deliberately undermine us.

Pros: This is a well-respected global law firm, with good work, excellent pay and good benefits. Despite its inhospitable atmosphere for people of color, it is very accepting of members of the LGBTQ community.

Cons: There is limited opportunity for minorities. Minorities are routinely excluded from opportunity, and in some cases actively disparaged by white partners (behind their backs). People of color don't really feel welcome and for that reason very rarely stay more than two years.

Partners to Avoid and Why: Alison Fumai is one to avoid. In the interest of full disclosure, I never worked with her, but she definitely seems to have a problem with people of color and seems to both pick fights with them and to try to prevent them from getting proper training and opportunity. She is also now the hiring partner (that may be why Dechert seems to only have minority hiring through Diversity fellowships). She also has a reputation for being notoriously difficult to work with because she makes unreasonable demands by expecting associates to complete assignments without adequate notice or time.

Favorite Things About this Firm: There are some good people and there are some very good lawyers to learn from. Certain departments in the firm are truly world-class, but people don't give minority lawyers the opportunity to meaningfully participate in meetings, top end work . . . and often fail to invite them to social events . . .

Current or former employee?: Former Employee

Last Year at Employer: 2017

Job type: Full time

- Reviewed on December 16, 2017

Advice to law firm management: The firm should work on offering a better salary for hard working employees. Management needs to take some training classes on how to provide better support to its staff and employees.

Pros: A law firm in which the staff and employees have made a working environment that is pleasant. The employee and staff come together to effectively work as a unit and deliver great work.

Cons: The firm really does not do a great job of recognizing and appreciating the administration that works very hard. The amount of work per pay is very low. Management does not offer support needed in the office.

Current or former employee?: Former Employee


Founded in 1875, Philadelphia, Philadelphia based Dechert is a leading international law firm with 26 offices in the United States, Europe, Asia and the Middle East. The firm has 800 lawyers, through whom they deliver seamless, high-quality legal services to clients wherever they do business. The firm maintains offices in Philadelphia, London, Boston, New York City, Brussels, Harrisburg, Hartford, Newport Beach, Paris; Princeton, Luxembourg, and Washington D.C., providing legal counsel in a wide range of specialties, from banking, taxation, and antitrust to intellectual property, biotechnology, litigation, and employment law. Dechert's 800 lawyers serve large multinational companies, small startups firms, nonprofit groups, government agencies, and individuals. Its predecessor firms represented the Pennsylvania Railroad and Getty Oil Company, among others. Contemporary clients include Aetna, Pfizer, US Airways, the Investment Funds Institute of Canada, Nomura Capital, The British Retail Consortium, Gerber Products Company, Internet Capital Group, CNN, and Comcast Corporation. Francis Biddle and U.S. Senators Arlen Specter and Joseph Clark were three prominent Dechert partners. The firm's focus on providing strategic, pragmatic and responsive legal counsel in each of its core practices has made it the firm of choice for clients seeking to structure transactions, manage risk, protect and develop assets, pursue remedies and resolve disputes. Dechert's history is both long and impressive. It is one of the largest international law firms, more so after a major merger in 2000. Dechert began its journey to its current name and standing in 1875, with Wayne Mac Veagh and George Tucker Bispham starting a partnership to form, MacVeagh & Bispham, in Philadelphia in 1875. Bispham, was a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania and University of Pennsylvania Law School whilst Mac Veagh had graduated from Yale in 1853 and then studied as an apprentice in a law firm before joining the bar in 1856. After the Civil War, Mac Veagh served as the U.S. minister to Turkey and on an Indian commission. In 1877 the firm marked a major turning point when Mac Veagh was named general counsel and solicitor for the Pennsylvania Railroad's Philadelphia District. Thus began about a century of service to one of the nation's largest railroads. With America's entry into World War II, the firm, then known as Barnes, Myers & Price, lost most of its lawyers to military or government service. With just a handful of lawyers remaining, Barnes, Myers & Price in 1942 merged with another Philadelphia law firm, Dechert, Smith & Clark, established by Robert Dechert and Curtis Bok in 1930. As laws and regulations governing corporate entities proliferated, the firm offered a more diverse range of services. Focused practice groups, including taxation (headed by Dechert himself), business & corporate, fiduciary and litigation, were introduced in 1946. In 1954 the firm hired its first full-time female associate, but it was not until 1973 that a woman became a Dechert partner. Amongst the first law firms to recognize the significance of serving clients abroad Dechert established offices in Brussels, London, Paris, Luxembourg, Munich, Hong Kong, Beijing, Moscow, Dublin, Frankfurt, Almaty, Dubai and Tbilisi. In 1994 Dechert Price & Rhoads had formed an alliance with the London law firm Titmuss Sainer & Webb. After six years of the alliance, the two firms merged in 2000 to create a unified partnership called, simply, Dechert that by 2001 included 700 lawyers in 12 worldwide offices. Known since the new millennium as Dechert LLP, the firm has numerous top-ranked practices and an impressive global footprint. Dechert lawyers represent major players on the world economic scene in headline-making matters requiring in-depth experience, deft strategic thinking and a solid grasp of the big picture.

Legal Jobs in Philadelphia and Near Locations

Notable cases

  • MacVeagh in 1877 headed the commission that led to the compromise resolving the 1876 Hayes-Tilden presidential election dispute that originated in Louisiana. As President Garfield's attorney general, MacVeagh indicted the president's assassin.
  • MacVeagh, the founding partner, headed the commission that led to the resolution of the 1876 Hayes-Tilden presidential election dispute and briefly served as President James Garfield's attorney general.
  • Bispham, co-founder of the firm authored Principles of Equity, a legal textbook that was considered the definitive work on the subject at the time.
  • In one significant trial, Bispham defended the railroad against claims by several homeowners that its operations had decreased their property values. The Pennsylvania Supreme Court ruled in favor of the railroad, and the plaintiffs' appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court failed.
  • During the 1980s, Dechert represented Getty Oil Company in its acquisition by Texaco. This is the deal that led to the notorious Pennzoil v. Texaco case, which resulted in a Texas state court verdict for Pennzoil for $10.53 billion, forcing Texaco to file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy.
  • In 2007 Dechert LLP won a landmark bankruptcy decision clarifying fraudulent transfer law in the context of hedge funds operated as ponzi schemes.
  • The firm's veteran litigator Leonard Garment served as Special Counsel to President Nixon, advising him on crises ranging from the Middle East to the armed occupation of Wounded Knee by members of the American Indian Movement to Watergate. He later represented Reagan officials during the Iran-Contra hearings and Judge Robert Bork in connection with his Supreme Court confirmation hearing.
  • Earlier this year a cross-practice, cross-office team of Dechert lawyers advised Inhibitex, Inc. in its $2.5 billion acquisition by pharmaceutical giant Bristol-Myers Squibb Company. Inhibitex specializes in creating drugs for the treatment and prevention of infectious diseases.
  • Dechert represented Sat

Dechert LLP. Awards and Recognitions

Dechert is consistently ranked among the leading law firms in each of its core practice areas of corporate and securities, financial services and investment management, intellectual property, litigation and government enforcement, real estate and structured finance. With integrated offices across the United States, Europe and Asia, Dechert has earned honors wherever its lawyers practice, and from industry publications including Chambers, The American Lawyer, Best Lawyers, Bloomberg, Thomson Reuters, The Legal 500, Benchmark Litigation and Law360. Additionally, its lawyers are consistently recognized as industry leaders and ranked among the best practitioners worldwide.

Other notable recent awards include:

Being ranked amongst top law firms in mergemarket's M&A Round-up for H1 2012 and in Thomson Reuters' 2Q 2012M&A league tables in July 2012.

Dechert Recognized Among Top 10 Law Firms for Pro Bono Work by The American Lawyer in June 2012.

Dechert Ranked Among Top Law Firms in The American Lawyer's "Corporate Scorecard 2012" in April 2012.

Dechert Listed Among Top National Firms for Securities and White-Collar Crime in November 2011.

Best Lawyers Names Dechert "Law Firm of the Year" for Mass Tort Litigation / Class Actions - Defendants in November 2011. In the same month the firm was also honored by multiple organizations for its Pro Bono practice.


The firm recognizes the importance of having a more representative legal profession, one that can successfully address the challenges of a global economy, hence are committed to diversity to help better fulfill employees, clients and community expectations.

The firm's Diversity Committee is focused on translating its diversity commitment into action by developing and supporting new initiatives in the areas of leadership, recruiting, retention, professional development and community outreach to actively seek to identify, recruit and advance a more diverse group of lawyers.

The firm has sponsored diversity fellowships and internships, and has participated in minority job fairs and other diversity-related events at law schools where they recruit. Dechert has also sponsored and supported activities designed to encourage female law students to join the firm as associates and to increase the number of women associates who are retained and elevated to partner.

The firm holds annual diversity dinners in its U.S. offices that bring female and minority partners, associates and summer associates together. The firm has adopted formal policies permitting partners, counsel and associates-both men and women-to work part time while raising children or taking care of other family members.

Dechert is a signatory to official statements sponsored by the Philadelphia and New York City Bar Associations in support of increasing the representation of women and minorities in the legal community.

Summer associate program

Dechert gives it's associates the tools, experience and opportunities to develop into effective lawyers and leaders. The firm fosters a supportive, high performance culture by offering numerous outlets through which associates can enrich their careers. These opportunities range from firmwide trainings across all of its offices to individual shadowing opportunities.

The Critical Skills Institute, Dechert's core competency program, is designed to help associates think strategically about their professional goals and to identify actual steps they can take to reach those goals. The Critical Skills Framework focuses on four primary skills, Leadership, Communication, Client Relations and Management.

Through training methods such as interactive simulated experiences, presentations by partners and personal coaching workshops, the Institute helps participants develop their skills and maximize their potential.

Each fall, Dechert's new class of associates and its recent laterals attend a firmwide orientation which gives them an opportunity to meet the other members of their class and learn more about available firm resources.

Dechert supports mentoring as a way for associates to integrate into the firm and to advance professionally. Moreover, every associate is encouraged, under its shadowing program, to accompany a partner to an arbitration, board meeting, negotiation, hearing, trial, client meeting, client pitch or similar event. The purpose of shadowing a partner is for an associate to watch, listen and learn. Dechert's shadowing program greatly increases the opportunities for associates to interact with and learn from partners and associates are given 25 hours of credit for shadowing.

At Dechert, mid-year evaluations offer an informal check-in on an associate's development. Feedback is timely, candid, meaningful and constructive. Associate salaries are in the range of $145,000 to $160,000 for the first year and between $152,000 and 170,000 for the second year.

Working for the Dechert LLP.

If you're interested in working with highly-regarded attorneys across a broad range of top-rated practices, consider Dechert. Dechert's international network of offices offers an open and inclusive culture where you'll work alongside ambitious, talented colleagues who are often amongst the acknowledged leaders in their field.

Over the past decade, the firm has forged itself into one of the world's most respected and profitable law firms while expanding its global network of offices across the United States, Europe, Asia and the Middle East.

Moreover the firm's culture is firmly rooted in the democratic tradition. It welcomes all views and encourages frequent and extensive communications regarding issues of concern and interest. Its culture is also one of collaboration and mutual respect. It values the opportunity to work with people of diverse backgrounds, cultures, talents, and points of view.

Recognizing that Dechert also has a responsibility to help build and invest in local communities, the firm participates in pro bono activities, local work and learning programs, and charitable services.


Ex-Dechert Associate Allowed to Go Ahead With Retaliation Claim...

Founded in 1875, Philadelphia, Philadelphia based Dechert is a leading international law firm with 26 offices in the United States, Europe, Asia and the Middle ...

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