Lateral Look: Orrick

With over 150 years of history to its name, you might think that the work done at this San Fran-born firm is hist-Orrick, but it’s all about innovation here!

Orrick Lateral Profile 2023

Our colleagues over at Chambers USA also have plenty of praise to bestow on Orrick,with the firm scooping up top-tier nationwide accolades for its projects (especially in the renewables space), privacy and datacapital marketsinternational trade, and corporate crime and investigations expertise. Other highlights include its bankruptcy and restructuring practice in New York, its venture capital and tech transactions work in California, and its litigation remit in DC

View the firm’s Chambers USA rankings

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

Associates say…

“I chose Orrick because of its reputation as an innovative firm that cares about employee well-being.”

“Top tier emerging companies firm. Friendly and cooperative culture.”

“Opportunity to work with a unique client base.”


 Strategic Recruitment Focuses 2023

Energy & infrastructure careers

The view from the firm: Orrick's global energy and infrastructure team provides a comprehensive platform for a sector undergoing tremendous change and facing heightened global attention. Our 150+ E&I transactional, litigation and regulatory lawyers advise on revolutionary projects in energy transition and energy technology and guide clients in the development of some of the most important infrastructure modernization projects that propel communities across the Americas, Europe, Africa, and Asia. Long a leading firm in the renewables sector with a deep international bench, we advise investors, developers and sponsors on all aspects of alternative energy projects and help drive innovations in battery storage, carbon capture and hydrogen fuel cell technology.

Energy & infrastructure clients: bp Corporation North America; Chevron; Equinor

Recent highlight: Represented TotalEnergies in relation to a joint venture with Simply Blue Energy regarding the development of offshore wind projects in the US.

Intellectual property careers

The view from the firm: The most innovative companies in the world call on us to protect their intellectual property and defend their brands. We’ve won some of the highest-impact IP cases of recent years, at trial and on appeal. Like our clients, we’ve succeeded by breaking the mold – in the way we’ve framed the issues, in our trial tactics, and in the graphics and other techniques we’ve used to make complex points clear.

In naming us the top IP department in the country, The American Lawyer noted that "time and again, we heard stories [from clients] lauding Orrick’s ability to jump into a case and successfully dig its clients out of a hole, even with little time to prepare." They added that we "successfully demonstrated this across an impressive range of venues, using novel strategies."

Intellectual property clients: Oracle; Canon; Microsoft

Recent highlight: Represented LinkedIn in a dispute with data analytics company hiQ regarding the latter's unauthorized access to LinkedIn's data.

Litigation careers

The view from the firm: We handle some of the biggest patent competitor disputes, and shut down cases brought by so-called "trolls," prompting The American Lawyer to write that "Orrick’s lawyers don’t just want to beat trolls in court – they want to vanquish them." We have won some of the most influential copyright and trademark cases in recent years, and are one of the few firms with a dedicated Trade Secrets team. We’ve prevailed in the toughest forums: Eastern Texas, Eastern Virginia and Northern California, the Federal Circuit, the U.S. Supreme Court, and the International Trade Commission. Based on these results, The American Lawyer named us one of the top IP practices in its "Litigation Department of the Year" contest.

Litigation clients: Goldman Sachs; Deloitte; Microsoft

Recent highlight: Represented Regents of the University of California and Santa Clara University against suits filed against the universities concerning tuition refunds as a result of remote teaching.

Finance careers

The view from the firm: For over a century, we've acted for global banks, funds and leading financial institutions at the forefront of innovation in the private and public sectors – from creating new financial products to resolving high-stakes litigation, enforcement and compliance matters. Harnessing the talents of our diverse finance, restructuring, securitization, real estate, M&A, capital markets and tax lawyers, we partner with our clients to develop strategies for bespoke challenges and opportunities in today's fast-paced financial markets. We combine our market knowledge with a deep bench of leading trial, appellate, regulatory and compliance lawyers to help financial institutions navigate complex litigation and enforcement matters.

Finance clients: Wells Fargo; Equinix; Turn/River Capital

Recent highlight: Advised Equinix on the financing of numerous joint ventures related to the acquisition, development, and construction of data centers globally.


International & Secondment Opportunities

Client secondment examples: Goldman Sachs; NVIDIA; META; Nuveen; Airbnb


Career Development & the Path to Partnership



1.5 : 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


The view from the firm: Associates receive formal training through our Associate Academies, as well as comprehensive practice group training programs.  We also provide access to online programs and tools as well as industry-leading, public continuing education programs.  Our practice-group specific performance benchmarks outline the knowledge, skills and work experiences lawyers can focus on for each role within the talent model.  Finally, a core part of our lawyer development efforts is one-on-one career coaching and mentoring. Associates also develop mentoring relationships through our Women’s Initiative, DEI affinity groups, mentoring families and practice group work relationships.  

 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


The view from the firm: Our firm’s associate bonus policy is merit based and takes into account the quality and scope of an associate’s total contribution.  To be in the best position to receive a merit bonus, associates are encouraged to have 1,950 bonus eligible billable hours (of which at least 1,800 are revenue generating hours). We pay our strongest contributors above market bonuses. We give 40 hours of credit for vacation time to unplug after intense periods. We give credit for all pro bono projects once the 1,800 revenue generating threshold is met. We also award Wellness Dollars to our team members who work with intensity in a given month. An associate or counsel who works 250+ billable hours in a month is eligible to receive a $500 award and is encouraged to invest it in unplugging and wellness activities.  Additional bonuses are awarded for work on firm initiatives and good time entry habits. We also offer generous agile working options, including reduced schedules and fully-remote work. 


 Is Orrick the right firm for you?




were happy in their current role

     agreed the work was interesting

The view from the firm: We’re looking for candidates who are excited about working in teams to help our clients adapt to a rapidly changing market. Candidates whose life experiences have enabled you to develop grit and empathy, practice teamwork and innovate. And we’re looking for future leaders — as an Orrick partner, at one of the great companies we advise, or to use your legal training to make an impact in new ways.

Laterals who join Orrick tell us they’re inspired by the opportunities to collaborate with colleagues and to do meaningful work on impactful engagements. They value our culture. And they appreciate our transparency about the path to partnership – and great role models among our junior partners.

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

“It's less hierarchical than a lot of firms, and very collaborative.”

“The progressive policies and general attitude, the excellent billable hours structure, and the leave policies.”

“Strong "team" culture, investment in development opportunities for more junior attorneys.”

 Diversity, Inclusion & Wellbeing





reported strong performance in inclusivity training

of partners are women

of associates identify as ethnically diverse


The view from the firm: This past year, Orrick implemented and/or improved a range of DE&I initiatives focused on allyship and inclusion:

  1.          Lawyers of Color Retreat (US and Europe): To reconnect our teams and further integrate new talent, we held three retreats in 2022, including an Lawyers of Color retreat that brought together 200 members of our team from 16 different offices throughout the US and Europe, energizing our diverse attorneys and leadership.
  2.          Allyship, Inclusion, Belonging & Intervention Trainings: Established in partnership with Dr. Arin Reeves, our allyship curriculum addresses intersectionality, hybrid mentoring, allyship and wellness. In 2022, we brought in Ritu Bhasin to speak to our team on “Cultivating Psychological Safety in the New Legal Workplace” and “Navigating Bias in the Legal Workplace as an Ally.”
  3.          Racial, Social and Economic Justice Fellowship Program: During 2022, we continued this impactful program with five new fellows, embedding experienced Orrick lawyers with innovative organizations working on the frontlines to advance a more just and equitable society.
  4.          The Conversation @ Orrick Inclusion 2022: In 2022, we continued our Inclusion conversation series and partnered with thought leaders such as Dr. Arin Reeves of Nextions, NPR journalist Stacy Vanek Smith, Phuong Phillips of Aledade, Dr. Eddie Glaude, Jr., Kal Penn, Jo-Ann Yoo of the Asian American Federation, Latinx Journalist Paula Ramos, Miki Woodard of the Texas Women’s Foundation and Transgender Activists and Veterans Shane Ortega and Laila Ireland to engage in thoughtful dialogue and foster an inclusive workplace.
  5.          Continued Support for Parents: With some of the most generous parental leave policies in Big Law, we offer at least 16 weeks for parents (24 weeks for the birth parent). More than a third of our 2022 partner class took parenting leave in the year before their promotion.
  6.          Continued Agile Working Options: In 2022, nearly 25% of our U.S. lawyers took advantage of our agile working arrangements (flexible hours, etc.).


Pro Bono




average pro bono
per US attorney    

    found the pro bono
work interesting


Pro bono highlights: Lawyers for Good Government (regulatory & finance); A to Z Impact Foundation (impact finance); Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights (political/election law); Public International Law & Policy Group (international law/policy)



Learn more about opportunities at the firm

Recruitment contact: Lauren Barton, Senior U.S. Manager of Lateral Associate Recruiting,