Ogletree, Deakins, Nash, Smoak & Stewart, P.C., headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia, was founded in 1977 by eight partners and eight associates, several of whom had practiced together since 1966. The first Ogletree Deakins offices to open were in Greenville, South Carolina and Atlanta, Georgia in 1977. Since then, the firm has grown substantially. Now, with more than 850 attorneys in 52 offices, the firm provides full-service labor and employment law representation for employers throughout the country.


At Ogletree Deakins, we understand that clients have choices among labor and employment counsel. Why should you choose Ogletree Deakins?

We represent employers.

  • We represent employers of all sizes and across many industries, from small businesses to Fortune 50 companies.

We provide coverage throughout the United States, and in Canada, Europe, and Mexico.

  • We have 52 offices, located in 28 states, the District of Columbia, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and in Canada, Europe, and Mexico.
  • Our lawyers are admitted to practice in over 45 states, the U.S. Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico, England, France, Germany, Australia, Mexico, and Canada.

We provide consistent, client-focused representation in accordance with our Client Pledge.

  • Our attorneys pledge to provide our clients with value, innovation, quality, collaboration, and effective communication.

We offer rates and rate structures that meet clients’ needs.

  • We have representation agreements with major corporations based on alternative fee arrangements structured for their unique needs.
  • We routinely offer tailored alternative fee arrangements to interested clients.

We are committed to diversity.

  • We believe our diverse group makes us better—as lawyers and as people.
  • Our lawyers are involved in numerous diverse bar associations and programs.

We offer value-added client service.

  • We provide multiple seminar programs, briefings and webinars for our clients.
  • We keep our clients updated with newsletters and e-alerts on new developments.
  • We conduct client assessment surveys to assess and improve our performance.

We offer distinguished labor and employment counsel.

  • We are proud that our firm was named the “Law Firm of the Year” in the Labor Law – Management category in the 2017 U.S. News – Best Lawyers® “Best Law Firms” rankings.
  • We have more than 225 attorneys listed in the 2018 edition of Best Lawyers.
  • Our lawyers have received many other accolades for their experience in labor and employment law.

Ogletree Deakins—Employers and Lawyers, Working Together®

Client Pledge

Premier client service is a firm tradition and remains our top priority.

Our attorneys pledge to:

  • Understand your business and objectives.
  • Focus on and anticipate your needs.
  • Collaborate to develop creative business solutions.
  • Harness technology and innovation to better serve your interests.
  • Communicate in a timely and effective manner.
  • Provide quality representation with exceptional value.

Professional Development, Diversity and Inclusion

Ogletree Deakins is proud to have a tradition of professional development, diversity and inclusion.

In our 52 offices across the United States, and in Mexico, Canada, and Europe, lawyers of diverse gender, age, race, ethnicity, national origin, gender identity,marital status, sexual orientation, and physical abilities have significant positions of responsibility. These positions include seats on the Board of Directors, the Compensation Committee, the Pricing Committee, the Client Services Committee, and more than a dozen leadership roles as office managing shareholders and practice group leaders.

Professional Development

At Ogletree Deakins, we define professional development as the ongoing process of expanding knowledge and refining or acquiring new skills through access to formal and informal training opportunities. It is a mission-critical endeavor that the firm undertakes systematically to strengthen its position as the premier labor and employment firm in the United States and beyond.

Firm-wide professional development efforts ensure our attorneys have access to top-quality substantive legal, leadership, and business development training. This supports the fulfillment of our Client Pledge and helps ensure consistency of quality across Ogletree Deakins offices.

Ogletree Deakins’ professional development programs and initiatives draw on internal firm resources and also on outside consultants. We continually refine what we offer based on the firm’s overall strategic plan, industry best practices, the feedback provided by attorneys and firm leadership, and the evolving needs of our attorneys and clients.

Our professional development initiatives and programs engage attorneys in a variety of different learning modalities (visual, auditory, and kinesthetic) in different environments (e.g., virtual and face-to-face) across a broad range of substantive legal topics and leadership skills.

Our programs seamlessly incorporate inclusion as an essential business and leadership skill that is developed as an integral part of each attorney’s professional development.

In addition, our substantive legal benchmarks, ODPro, lists the substantive legal skills that associates must acquire at each level of their careers (junior, mid-level, and senior associate) within the labor and employment practice at Ogletree Deakins. These clearly articulated developmental milestones—and the resources to accomplish them—allow associates to take greater ownership of their careers and enable supervising attorneys to provide focused feedback and more proactively support and evaluate associates’ progress.

Below are further examples of the types of resources, initiatives, and programs that Ogletree Deakins offers firm-wide:

  • Legal writing training with Bryan Garner, the edition of Black Law Dictionary
  • Trial advocacy and deposition training with the National Institute for Trial Advocacy (NITA)
  • Organizational skills training, which ranges from supervisory skills and time management to cultural competence and delegation
  • Communication skills training through workshops and webinars on topics such as public speaking and giving and receiving feedback
  • Business development training through in-person workshops, individual coaching, live webcasts, and on-demand webinars
  • Leadership development programs with Joan Newman, Esq., and cultural competency training
  • Individual coaching sessions to address specific developmental needs
  • Firm-wide substantive legal training and CLE through West LegalEdcenter®
  • Firm-wide membership in the American Bar Association
  • Membership in a wide range of diversity and career-development organizations, such as the Minority Corporate Counsel Association, the Leadership Council on Legal Diversity, the Diversity & Flexibility Alliance, and Vault, among others.

Additionally, each of our offices creates its own substantive legal training programs that meet the needs of local attorneys and the circumstances arising from their locations, client-bases, etc.

Professional Development Steering Committee

The Ogletree Deakins Professional Development Steering Committee guides the firm in creating and systemically implementing professional development programs and initiatives.  The Committee is chaired by the firm’s Managing Partner and is assisted by Professional Development Ambassadors located in each office, as well as our firm-wide Associate Focus Group.

Learn more here.

Diversity and Inclusion

Diversity embraces each person’s uniqueness and encompasses all the ways in which we differ.

This includes differences in age, ethnicity, gender, physical ability, race, sexual orientation, gender identity, educational, geographical location, income, marital status, personality, military experience, parental status, religious belief, work experience, and job classification among others.

Inclusion refers to harnessing this uniqueness towards a common goal.

Inclusion fosters a work environment of respect and engagement, and brings a variety of different perspectives together in a meaningful way in order to get the full, more accurate picture.  This results in the highest quality of service to our clients and in excellent and sustainable business outcomes.

Diversity and Inclusion Steering Committee

The Ogletree Deakins Diversity and Inclusion Steering Committee is chaired by the firm’s Managing Partner and guides the firm in creating programming and initiatives to recruit, hire, retain, and diverse attorneys within the firm.

This is rooted in the conviction that attorneys of diverse backgrounds bring a wealth of perspectives that reflect the needs of our clients and the communities where we live.  The Committee is managed by a full-time diversity and inclusion department, including the firm’s Chief Diversity and Professional Development Officer, and is assisted by Diversity and Inclusion Ambassadors located in each office.

Learn more here.

What We Do Today’s employers are faced with myriad federal and state laws and regulations that govern the workplace.  In order to comply with these laws and to provide a positive workplace, employers must dedicate tremendous resources to labor and employment law issues.  At Ogletree Deakins, our more than 850 lawyers in 52 offices across the United States, and in Canada, Europe, and Mexico work daily with employers in connection with their workplace needs. From traditional labor issues, to employment litigation, to workplace safety, to employee benefits, immigration and other areas, Ogletree Deakins has experienced professionals in all areas of labor and employment law who provide efficient, client-focused service.  Our labor and employment law practices are complemented by thriving practices in immigration, construction, and commercial litigation.


Our innovations serve in-house counsel’s and human resources professionals’ needs for technology and tools related to compliance with federal and state laws, litigation, legal project management, and workplace training.

Overtime Solutions Center

On May 18, 2016, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) issued the new final overtime regulations that would have affected all U.S. employers subject to the FLSA.  These revisions, which were to become effective on December 1, 2016, included a number of sweeping changes to the current overtime exemptions, including significant increases to the minimum salary that employees must be paid to be considered exempt under the executive, administrative and professional exemptions.  However, on November 22, 2016, a federal court in Texas issued a nationwide temporary injunction that blocked the regulations from going into effect.  The issuance of the temporary injunction is now on appeal to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit.  Ogletree Deakins’ Overtime Solutions Center is intended to provide the latest news concerning the overtime regulations and to provide additional resources for employers in this important area.


Ogletree Deakins is committed to providing educational programs specifically designed for in-house counsel, human resources professionals, and business leaders. The firm offers webinars, multi-day national seminars, and half-day and full-day local programs to keep clients abreast of key developments and issues affecting employers.

Learn more here.


Ogletree Deakins enjoys a long tradition of legal excellence based on high quality work and outstanding attorneys and staff. We are fully committed to the importance of diversity within the workplace and are proud of our record. (See Our Commitment To Diversity). We encourage high achievers who share our singular focus on providing the highest level of legal services to our clients to consider a career with Ogletree Deakins. 

Learn more here.

Career Paths

Lateral Attorneys

We provide opportunities to work with some of the largest and most influential businesses in the country. We look forward to hearing from currently practicing labor and employment attorneys with impeccable credentials and experience.  Ogletree welcomes applications from qualified candidates who are interested in our traditional associate, of counsel and shareholder roles.

Counsel Track Attorneys

We have special counsel, counsel and senior counsel opportunities that offer non-traditional paths for experienced attorneys who may be interested in project based work or lower billable hour requirements.  These unique part-time and full-time roles are for those who want or need flexible hours during the work week, including the option to work from home on most occasions.  Counsel track attorneys will often times be expected to perform all the duties of a traditional law firm associate, but may not have the billable hour expectations of our on-track attorneys.  Joining the Firm in a counsel role or moving into a counsel track does not permanently place one on a non-traditional path.  Counsels can move into traditional roles based on their work product, ability to work a full-time traditional schedule and Firm needs in their local office.

Entry-Level Associates

Our beginning associates are immediately involved and challenged in all aspects of our cases and supported by the mentoring and supervision of more senior attorneys. Recent law school graduates with exceptional transcripts and legal internships are invited to submit resumes with transcripts and writing samples.

Each year we recruit for Entry-Level Associates at two or three diversity career fairs.    In 2018, we will participate in the National LGBT Bar Associaiton’s Lavender Law Career Fair, Heartland Diversity Legal Job Fair, Indy Bar Association Diversity Job Fair, and the Hispanic National Bar Association’s Career Fair. 

Summer Associates

Every summer, several of our offices choose to employ a few outstanding law school students who participate in research projects, opinion letters, depositions, witness interviews and a wide variety of other assignments. We provide mentors, project evaluations and social activities for a challenging and rewarding learning experience.

Each year we recruit for Summer Associates at two or three diversity career fairs.  In 2018, we will participate in the Lavender Law Career Fair, Heartland Diversity Legal Job Fair, Indy Bar Association Diversity Job Fair, and the Hispanic National Bar Association Career Fair. 

Ogletree Deakins in the News

Read all about or firm’s latest news, awards, activities and achievements.  Read the latest e-newsletter from the Professional Development and Inclusion Department here