Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP

Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP

4 Star Rating     3 reviews 
Main Office:

Worldwide Plaza, 825 Eighth Avenue | New York City | NY | 10019

Phone: 212-474-1000 | Fax: 212-474-3700

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Year of establishment 1819 Number of partners 83
Number of offices 2 Partner to associate ratio 0.20
Biggest office New York City Percentage of women attorneys 38.00
Number of attorneys 519 Percentage of minority attorneys 23.30
Number of associates 367 Percentage of LGBT attorneys 4.20
Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP
   3 reviews

Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP Reviews

- Reviewed on December 16, 2017

Advice to law firm management: It would be helpful if there was some sort of database that could track cases and lawyer specialties better than the way they're allocated right now. Make sure you have the right person in the right area.

Pros: This firm has been around for nearly 200 years and is one of the most prestigious in the country. A job here means you have achieved a measure of success and credibility. You can learn about many different areas and for such a large firm the upper level lawyers are really very helpful and approachable.

Cons: Disorganization is the bane of any firm this size with this many employees. You might be working with another associate who has no clue about a certain area of the law. And a lot of staff that don't move up for whatever reason are very bitter and try to hold you back.

Current or former employee?: Current Employee

- Reviewed on September 25, 2017

Advice to law firm management: Make expectations more realistic to provide a better work-life balance. Set term limits for directors in admin departments.

Pros: Most of the staff members are friendly and helpful. It is one of the most prestigious firms in the country. Partners are great to work with.

Cons: There is some micromanagement going on here. The firm is disorganized and management is poor.

Current or former employee?: Current Employee


Cravath has been known as one of the premier U.S. law firms for nearly two centuries. Each of our practice areas is highly regarded, and our lawyers are recognized around the world for their commitment to the representation of our clients' interests. Our primary areas of practice include: corporate, litigation, tax, executive compensation and benefits and trusts and estates.

Practice Areas

Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP practices law in the following areas and works with its clients to provide the best possible legal solutions.

  • Alien Tort Claims And International Torts
  • Antitrust
  • Antitrust Litigation Regulatory Clearance And Advisory
  • Appellate
  • Arbitration
  • Bankruptcy And Corporate Reorganization
  • Civil Rico
  • Civil Rights
  • Class Action Defense
  • Commercial Banking
  • Corporate Governance And Board Advisory
  • Defamation
  • First Amendment
  • Employment Employee Benefits And Erisa
  • Environmental
  • False Claims Act
  • Foreign Corrupt Practices Act
  • General Commercial Litigation And Contractual Disputes
  • General Corporate
  • Insurance
  • Intellectual Property
  • Intellectual Property Litigation
  • Investigations And White Collar Criminal Defense
  • Mergers And Acquisitions
  • Mergers Acquisitions And Business Transactions
  • Private Equity
  • Professional Liability
  • Real Estate
  • Representation Of Boards Board Committees Directors And Company Executives
  • Representation Of Non Us Clients
  • Restructuring
  • Securities
  • Securities Litigation
  • Shareholder Derivative Litigation
  • Structured Finance And Securitization
  • Tax Litigation
  • Trusts And Estates Litigation
  • Corporate
  • Litigation
  • Tax
  • Executive Compensation And Benefits
  • Trusts And Estates
  • International
  • Pro Bono

Hiring Criteria

Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP follows the set of hiring criteria outlined below.

Cravath says that it's interviewing and hiring process is designed to help both the candidate and the firm to make the right choices. For the firm the hiring process is a two-way street, with the candidate getting as many opportunities as possible to evaluate the firm. It is of vital importance to the firm that they select only those candidates who have the capacity to excel in the challenging environment and also who genuinely believe that Cravath is the right place for them.

The firm mainly hires associates from the top 10 law schools, but they are not averse to hiring associates whose academic performance is less strong, but who come through the firm's rigorous interviewing process, thereby demonstrating that they possess the qualities that Cravat requires.

When candidates are called back for second round of interviews they are made to engage in free-flowing conversations with partners and associates. They get to learn from various lawyers and get to learn about Cravath in full detail. Offers for summer and full-time employment are made quickly after the call-back interview.

Once the candidates is chosen, he is on par with the others, without regards to academic record, school attended or any other factors that may have been taken into account in hiring. Each associate is given the opportunity to excel and prove himself. All associates, irrespective of their difference, share one unifying characteristic: a strong commitment to excellence.

Pro bono

From the Firm's inception, challenging pro bono work has been a cornerstone of the firm's practice. In 1803, Judge Elijah Miller, the founder of the Firm's Auburn, New York office, defended the first Native American tried for the murder of a white man in the State of New York. Despite heavy public disapproval, Judge Miller provided the defendant with free legal representation.

Cravath is committed to improving the legal system by providing counseling to those who need it but cannot afford it. Associates are encouraged to participate in pro bono work and do so either under a partner's supervision, or in issues that they themselves have found. Pro bono activities are available to lawyers in all the firm's practice areas.

The firm has some significant pro bono success stories to its credit. It won a new penalty trial for a woman on death row in Alabama in 2004. The firm recent won a landmark settlement on behalf of homeless families with children. Thanks to Cravath's and Legal Aid Society's attorney's persistent representation the New York City finally acknowledged, after 25 years of litigation, that homeless families have a state constitutional right to shelter, and has agreed to an enforceable judgment that sets the legal parameters for emergency shelter for homeless people.

In one case, Cravat got a visa for the Colombian mother of a teenager with kidney failure, who was thought to be a likely donor. In another, the firm won asylum for a girl from French Guiana who had been the victim of female genital mutilation. The girl had been treated at the hospital for post-traumatic stress.

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:
  • Cravath represented the underwriters, led by J.P. Morgan Securities, in connection with the US$2.5 billion registered debt offering of JPMorgan Chase & Co., a leading global financial services firm and one of the largest banking institutions in the United States. The transaction closed on August 20, 2012.
  • Cravath represented Burlington Northern Santa Fe, LLC in connection with its US$1.25 billion registered debt offering. The transaction closed on August 23, 2012.
  • On March 28, 2012, Pentair, Inc. and Tyco International Ltd. announced a definitive agreement to combine Tyco's Flow Control business with Pentair in a tax-free, all-stock merger valued at $10 billion. Cravath represented Pentair in connection with this transaction.
  • On January 29, 2011, Alpha Natural Resources ("Alpha") and Massey Energy Company ("Massey") announced that they have executed a definitive agreement under which Alpha will acquire all outstanding shares of Massey common stock in a transaction with an $8.5 billion enterprise value for Massey. Cravath represented Massey in connection with this transaction.
  • On March 30, 2012, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit reaffirmed the District Court's June 3, 2011 ruling, which dismissed a complaint that alleged antitrust violations by Cravath clients Turner Broadcasting System, Inc. and Time Warner Cable Inc.
  • Cravath represented the underwriters, led by J.P. Morgan Securities, in connection with the US$3.25 billion registered debt offering of JPMorgan Chase & Co. The transaction closed on January 23, 2012.
  • On January 31, 2012, IBM announced a definitive agreement to acquire Worklight, a privately held Israel-based provider of mobile software for smartphones and tablets. Cravath represented IBM in connection with this transaction.

Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP Awards and Recognitions

Cravath Swaine & Moore 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.

Cravath has been nominated for 2012 Chambers USA Awards for Excellence in three practice areas: Antitrust, Corporate/M&A and Securities Regulation. The awards recognize a law firm's pre-eminence in key practice areas. They also reflect notable achievements including outstanding work, impressive strategic growth and excellence in client service.

On June 10, 2011, Cravath received the 2011Chambers USA Award for Excellence in Corporate/M&A. This is the second year the Firm has received this honor.

On February 9, 2012, Cravath individuals were honored at inMotion Inc.'s 12th annual Commitment to Justice Awards. InMotion provides free legal and social services to low-income women, including recent immigrants and those suffering from domestic violence.

On June 24, 2011, Cravath received the "Best USA Independent Corporate Law Firm - Gold Award" and "Best USA Commercial and Competition Law Firm - Silver Award" at the 2011 International Legal Alliance Summit & Awards (ILASA) ceremony, held in Paris, France.

Cravath has been nominated for 2011 Chambers USA Awards for Excellence in three practice areas: Corporate/M& Finance and Intellectual Property. The awards reflect notable achievements over the past 12 months, including outstanding work, excellence in client service and contribution to the legal profession.

On November 3, 2011, Cravath received several recognitions in the annual "U.S. Innovative Lawyers" report by the Financial Times. The Firm was named among the "FT Law 25," which ranks innovation in the legal sector based on the originality, rationale and impact of a firm's work.


Diversity has a solid rock principle at Cravath. The firm has always held the belief that excellence and creativity arise from diverse sources. The firm embraces the importance of recruiting and retaining outstanding lawyers from different backgrounds and promotes diversity at all levels. Cravath's lawyers come from a wide range of backgrounds, yet all share important qualities-intelligence, creativity, work ethic and a desire to excel.

Cravath says that their ultimate objective is to provide the best possible representation to their clients. The firm is convinced that excellence and diversity cannot be divorced from one another and the firm cannot provide their clients with the highest level of representation unless they recruit and retain outstanding lawyers from diverse backgrounds, with different perspectives, experiences and insights.

The firm has established a Diversity Committee to formulate and propose diversity goals for the firm and to develop and implement practices that promote diversity, and analyze and track the firm's progress in achieving those goals.

The firm makes special efforts to recruiting women law students, law students of color and lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) law students, and enhancing their experiences while at the firm.

The firm encourages their attorneys to reach out to students from their alma maters. For example, one of their associates (who is a Columbia Law alumna) approached the Columbia Law Women's Association and proposed the idea of a panel that would enable Columbia women to hear associates' perspectives on law firm life. In February of 2009, she, along with several of their other female associates, led a panel discussion at Columbia that focused on being a woman at a law firm.

Summer associate program

The firm's summer program is designed to provide law students with the experience of day-to-day working life of a Cravath lawyer. The firm starts preparing for the associate's summer experience well in advance. Upon the associate's arrival he will be assigned to a partner from his chosen department. This partner will be responsible for assigning work, providing feedback, introducing the other team members and ensuring that the associate's experience resembles that of a first-year associate. The firm's summer associates gain valuable hands-on experience working directly for, and with, their clients.

Associates say that that their summer experience at Cravath is not only an incredible learning opportunity but also a chance to gain serious legal experience. The summer program gives the associates a great chance to immerse themselves in intellectually stimulating and rewarding work right from day one.

Working for the Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP

Working at Cravath is a rewarding experience. The firm has distinctive system of developing outstanding students into outstanding lawyers. The firm's rotation system provides the broad experience needed to develop sound legal and business judgment. The firm offers the usual challenges of working in a large sophisticated law practice. Not only is the candidate assured of the finest system of legal training and development, he also gets a competitive salary, plus a liberal benefits package and other carefully crafted programs that promote balance between life's personal and professional demands.

Attorneys seeking to work at Cravath Swaine & Moore can expect exceptional opportunities and an assurance of working in a mutually respectful and stimulating environment. As one of the world's leading firms Cravath has a great reputation for representing some very big names in the business, with a great success record in solving complex legal matters and serving the public interest, according to the very highest professional standards.


Summary: Top law firm Cravath, Swaine & Moore has raised their associate pay for the first time since 2007, placing their compensation rates at the top of the l...

Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP is one of the oldest US law firms having started operations way back in 1819. In almost two centuries of its existence it has establ...

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