Lateral Look: Latham & Watkins

With a sprawling global network and a prestigious reputation, this firm is no lightweight when it comes to matters of international proportions.

Latham & Watkins Lateral Profile 2023

While Latham is considered a West Coast star due to its LA origins, its expertise stretches far beyond the Golden State. According to figures reported by AmLaw, the firm is now the second largest law firm by revenue globally – racking up a whopping $5.5 billion in 2022 –and it’s also high up in the headcount stakes with more than 3,200 attorneys working across 30 global offices.

And if that still doesn’t paint a clear enough picture of this firm’s mighty impact, then Latham’s standing in Chambers USA renders it in high definition: the firm picks up 140 accolades overall, and 27 of these are in the top tier nationwide. Standout areas include antitrustbanking & financecapital marketscorporate/M&Aclimate changeemployee benefits & executive compensationenergyintellectual propertylife scienceslitigation, and tax.

View the firm’s Chambers USA rankings

Read the firm’s Inside View feature on junior associate life

Associates say...

“Latham is a very prestigious firm, with very smart people, and the work it offers is challenging and exciting to be part of. I felt that I would also fit well within the particular practice group that I am in, which has been the case. I love it here.”

“The people were the most intelligent, down-to-earth, and driven lawyers I met, which is exceptional when coupled with the top-tier legal services the firm provides.”

“High associate retention, work life balance, specific partners (and the types of matters they work on), and the kindness of every single person I interacted with.”

 Career Development & the Path to Partnership



2.5 : 1


partners made in 2022

associate : partner gearing

of associates intend to make partner




felt partnership was achievable for attorneys with children felt partnership was achievable at the firm agreed partners
are nurturing
future leaders


Hours & Compensation





billable hours

average number of vacation days associates took in one year

average number of hours associates worked in one week




agreed they had a good work-life balance

said the benefits package makes the workload worthwhile

found the bonus allocation fair and transparent



1st year: $215,000
2nd year: $225,000
3rd year: $250,000
4th year: $295,000
5th year: $345,000
6th year: $370,000
7th year: $400,000
8th year: $415,000


Is Latham & Watkins the right firm for you?






felt they had a good level of partner contact

felt they had a good level of client contact

were happy in their current role

agreed they had autonomy over when they work remotely


The view from the firm: While the mechanics of hiring may differ based on experience (new associate vs. mid-level associate vs. partner), the characteristics that Latham looks for in a candidate are similar across the board – bright candidates who will enhance the firm’s merit-based culture and core values of transparency, respect, innovation, collaboration and diversity. 

Items the firm looks for include:

• Self-starter with high degree of maturity, responsibility, and judgement

• Excellence in rigorous academic and leadership achievements

• Commitment to promoting inclusion and diversity in the legal profession

• Success working in a collaborative and results-driven team

• Desire to practice at a global law firm


We asked survey respondents what stands out about the firm’s culture?

“Very friendly and welcoming, with a strong sense of camaraderie and identify as a firm.  I also feel that my boundaries between work and personal life have been respected by peers and supervisors when I have expressed the need.  Once they bring you in, they are committed to you and your growth.”

“People are down-to-earth, team-oriented, and normal.  There is very little internal competition, as far as I'm aware; people seem to care about each other as humans; and the firm strives to develop young attorneys for their own sake's as well as for the good of the firm.”

“Welcoming culture, considerate, ultra-professional, and an aura of success cloaked in humility.”

“The lawyers seemed to really enjoy what they do, and the personality seemed energetic and ongoing. The firm seemed to have a high level of trust in attorneys, and they seemed more willing than other firms to trust associates to work when and where they want as long as they are getting work done.”

Diversity, Inclusion and Wellbeing





reported strong performance in inclusivity training

of partners are women

identify as ethnically diverse


Pro Bono




average pro bono
per US attorney    

    found the pro bono
work interesting


Pro bono highlights: NAACP (voting rights, litigation); Humane Society of the US (animal rights, appellate & trial); Domestic abuse survivors in the UK; Emmett Till Interpretive Center (civil rights)


Learn more about opportunities at the firm

Recruitment contact: Peter Alexander,