With an illustrious history dating back to 1819, Cravath remains a leanly staffed, relatively small firm with headquarters in New York City, an office in London, and a newly launched office in Washington, D.C. Associates have no billable hour requirement, yet they bill among the highest hours of any top firm. Often described as “sink or swim,” the firm utilizes a unique work rotation system that lends itself to smaller, cooperative teams, close mentoring, substantial responsibility, and quick learning for associates.
Total No. Attorneys (2023)
No. of Partners Named (2023)
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Cravath is the most prestigious law firm in the United States, and its hiring standards reflect that. The culture is polite, professional, and noticeably more focused on the work than anything else. Associates say hours are very demanding as a direct result of the work required to complete assignments (the firm has no billable hour requirement). Partners treat associates well, but the firm is opaque regarding decision-making. Formal training is strong and highly encouraged; informal training is also excellent due to the firm’s small size and resulting close working relationships across seniority levels. Work is substantive and generally appropriate to and above an associate’s level. The firm reportedly embraced remote work and possesses an excellent, helpful IT department. Compens...
The development of our lawyers is our most important long-term objective, and we are committed to recruiting and retaining outstanding lawyers from a variety of backgrounds. Our fundamental strength—the rotation system, also known as the Cravath System—has remained intact because we, and generations of partners before us, believe that a pe...
About the Firm
With two centuries under its belt, Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP is one of the nation’s preeminent law firms. Cravath has settled on a lean-and-mean approach to world dominance with three strategically placed offices in New York, London, and Washington, D.C.
Storied History, Market Leader
Cravath is one of the nation’s most storied law firms, and has certainly made its mark. Firm founders Richard Blatchford and William Seward served in Lincoln’s administration, with Seward as the Secretary of State. The firm had its hand in representing famed abolitionist Horace Greeley and inventor Samuel Morse, organizing NBC for its original shareholders, and handling the famed 13-year antitrust lawsuit that began in 1969 for IBM.
Cravath is a market leader in sal...
- “Extremely professional and genuinely collegial. We all want to get the work done well and as efficiently as possible. The rotation system facilitates cooperation while undercutting petty competition.”
- “Juniors regularly socialize outside of work. Professionally, the culture is formal generally but is more relaxed among associates, especially juniors. The firm puts a clear emphasis on perfection.”
- “Very polite and professional environment. No significant social scene outside of the office.”
Why Work Here
Here’s what you may not know: The professional development of our lawyers is our most important long-term objective. Our continued success depends on our ability to attract and develop the best talent, and we are committed to providing our lawyers with a rewarding and well-rounded professional experience.
We are not, and do not strive to be, the largest law firm measured by number of offices or lawyers. Our goal is to be the firm of choice for clients facing their most challenging legal issues, most significant business transactions and most critical disputes. To that end, we recruit the nation’s most outstanding law students and focus on training and developing them into world-class lawyers through our hallmark Rotation System.
Diversity at Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP
Getting Hired Here
- “The hiring process is competitive and typically geared towards Harvard, Columbia, and NYU. I went to a school outside the T14, and I feel that the firm does generally look for top-level students at schools outside the top 6 or so law schools.”
- “We take people with the highest grades from the most prestigious schools. If you pass the screener interview, you are invited to sit for a full-day callback process with interviews organically [lasting upwards of an hour] each. We look for people who love the law and are willing to dig into the most complex and novel issues in the profession.”
- “Motivated, cares about being at Cravath in particular, great grades. Eager to take ownership and gain wide exposure to a variety of matters.”
- “The firm looks for hard-working, smart, ambitious, and congenial people who will promote Cravath’s collegial culture and commitment to excellence. Grades, work experience, personality, and diversity all play large roles. Feeder schools include NYU, Columbia, and Harvard, among others. There is training for interviewers.”