Lateral Look: Milbank

You can bank on this elite New Yorker continuing to be a BigLaw trendsetter in years to come.

Milbank is something of an influencer in the BigLaw world. For example, it upped the stakes in 2018 when it raised the bar for base salaries (forcing other firms to dig deeper into their pockets to compete), then moved into the uber cool Hudson Yards development, making the downtown NY financial district crowd look decidedly old school. Yes, Milbank is one of those prestigious New York firms that’s leading the pack and is, in fact, on its way to leaving it behind entirely. We're referring to the significant financial growth and global impact attained by a small crowd of elite US outfits, which places them in a league that is entirely their own. The firm has a balance of practices that are equipped for both the boom times and the Zoom times.

View the firm's Chambers USA rankings here>>

Why did you choose Milbank?

Positive connection with the attorneys who interviewed/recruited me; reputation for a collegial culture; and strong financials.

“The upward trajectory the firm is on; the brand new offices, the pay raise, the name change – all of these moves told me that the firm was moving in a positive, more progressive direction, largely focused on associate satisfaction.

"Interesting work, compensation leader."
"Strong counter-cyclical practices."
"Strong bankruptcy practice."
"Top project finance practice group."


International and secondment opportunities

Common secondment destinations: Chicago, New York

Client secondment examples: BlackRock, Brookfield Renewables, Centerbridge, Citadel, Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley


Career development & the path to partnership



3.3 : 1


partners made in 2021

associate : partner gearing

of junior associates intend to make partner




felt partnership was achievable for attorneys with children strongly agreed the firm’s name adds value to their resume agreed partners
are nurturing
future leaders


The view from the firm:  Milbank@Harvard is an intensive three-module program for our mid-level and senior associates. The curriculum includes courses on finance, accounting, leadership and team management, strategy, marketing, negotiations and macroeconomics. Participants in our more senior modules receive upward feedback and have the opportunity to work on their leadership skills in group and one-on-one coaching.

Our Career Development & Coaching program for affinity group members provides participants with structured interactions with partner mentors to help cultivate relationships and secure opportunities to develop their talents and careers. Participants work with an executive coach as part of the program. With their coach and mentor, participants create their vision of career success and identify steps towards achieving it in a career development plan, which they receive mentor and coach support in executing.


Hours & compensation


no requirement



billable hours

average number of vacation days associates took in one year

average number of hours associates worked in one week




agreed the bonus amount awarded is fair

said the benefits package makes the workload worthwhile

found the bonus allocation fair and transparent



  • 1st year: $205,000
  • 2nd year: $215,000
  • 3rd year: $240,000
  • 4th year: $275,000
  • 5th year: $305,000
  • 6th year: $330,000
  • 7th year: $350,000
  • 8th year: $365,000


The view from the firm: The Firm has a 25 hours/year pro bono requirement but many of our lawyers choose to work more given the breadth of pro bono work the firm offers.  Lawyers can work full-time flexible or reduced hours (part-time) schedules.  Milbank maintains a top of the market compensation structure with a standard base salary and bonus for each class of associates. The Firm offers competitive benefits and provides parenting and well-being resources, an onsite health center at Hudson Yards, generous parental and time-off leaves, vendor discount programs and other work-life and well-being benefits.


Is Milbank the right firm for you?





said they’d chosen the right firm

were happy in their current role

felt comfortable being themselves

The view from the firm: Milbank is actively recruiting lateral associates across our 11 practice groups. We are always interested in talented attorneys with experience and drive. We look for client-focused lawyers from all backgrounds who are seeking a platform to expand their careers. Interested candidates should consult our website for the latest job openings.

What stands out about the firm's culture?

Easy going at all levels across the firm. Not much of a gunner atmosphere, though people live up to very high standards of work product quality. People are genuinely friendly with each other.

“People were very willing to take the time to share about their experiences to help with career development.

"Even though it has the prestige of a well-established "white shoe" NY law firm, it does not have the environment or mentality of one. It is very forward-thinking and constantly looking for growth opportunities."

"Best culture in BigLaw."


Diversity, inclusion and wellbeing






rated the firm's efforts to recruit diverse associates 

agreed the firm strives to retain and promote diverse associates

of partners are women

of associates identify as ethnically diverse


The view from the firm: Through our Diversity, Equity & Inclusion strategy and initiatives, Milbank strives to ensure that individual differences among us are: (i) understood, respected and appreciated; (ii) recognized as a source of strength for the Firm; and (iii) valued as qualities that enrich our work environment.

We believe that all dimensions of diversity (e.g. background, experience, culture, race/ethnicity, ability, gender identity, sexual orientation, age, and geography) bring perspectives that benefit each other, our clients, and the communities we serve.

Milbank leverages 6 affinity groups, regional groups, partner committees, training and development programs and a variety of external partnerships to provide networking and growth opportunities, foster community, and support belonging at the firm.


Pro bono




average pro bono
per US attorney    

    found the pro bono
work interesting


The view from the firm: Milbank believes that as lawyers we have a responsibility to use the law to make a difference. Milbank has a long history of commitment to social justice work. In 1993, we were one of the first law firms to appoint a partner solely devoted to our pro bono practice. Since then, Milbank lawyers have contributed nearly 1.25 million hours of pro bono work. Milbank advocates for racial and social justice through direct representation of individuals, counseling minority and women owned small business and non-profits, and impact litigation pushing for transparency in government and law enforcement, immigrant rights, and reproductive rights. 



See opportunities at the firm here>>

Recruitment contacts here>>

Visit the firm's website here>>