Based in the Big Apple, Kelley Drye & Warren has more than 185 years of legal experience. With expertise in over 30 practice areas, the firm has compiled an impressive client roster including Tata America, Arcelor Mittal USA, JPMorgan, Labcorp, Quincy Bioscience, Unilever, The Walt Disney Company, Kohl’s Department Stores, Foot Locker, Sotheby’s International Realty, Inc., salesforce.com, and Nestle.

Firm Stats


Total No. Attorneys (2022)

250 - 500


No. of Partners Named (2022)



No. of 1st Year Associates Hired (2021)



Base Salary

1st year: $200,000


No. of U.S. Offices



No. of International Offices


Vault Verdict

The firm seeks those who not only have the grades and experience, but also a personality that will match the firm’s culture and a drive to take on responsibility. The firm is working towards increasing events for the associates to socialize and the associates enjoy the office’s day-to-day atmosphere, one they say is collegial and warm. Associates and partners work closely together creating strong and supportive relationships where the associates feel valued and adequately apprised of firm metrics. Work hours ebb and flow, but the billable hour requirement is reasonable and work locations are flexible. The compensation is below market, which causes gripe for the associates, but the associates are glad to spend their time on meaningful and substantive legal work. Pro bono work is an...

About the Firm

Based in the Big Apple, Kelley Drye & Warren has more than 185 years of legal experience. With expertise in over 30 practice areas, the firm has compiled an impressive client roster including Tata America, ArcelorMittal USA, JPMorgan, Unilever, salesforce.com, Labcorp, and Verizon Communications.

Young Prodigy

In 1836, New York attorneys Hiram Barney and William Mulligan founded a firm that started taking major cases early on, working on the bankruptcies of the Metropolitan Street Railway and New York City Railway. Barney was later appointed to the then-prestigious position of Collector of the Customs of the Port of New York by none other than President Abraham Lincoln.

Around the turn of the century, name partner Nicholas Kelley joined the firm. Kelley ...

Associate Reviews


  • “Lawyers and staff get along well. I am very happy working with my group. We socialize as frequently as we can.  It is a fairly relaxed atmosphere (for a law firm), but partners expect very high quality work, so it is the best of both worlds.”
  • “The culture is generally very social and friendly. Management goes out of their way to promote a collegial, easy going atmosphere—it is clearly a priority for them. Interactions between lawyers and staff are respectful and friendly.”
  • “The firm has a great culture. Everyone is respectful and wants to see you succeed. They provide the mentorship necessary to improve and thrive as an attorney. COVID has made socialization a bit less frequent, but prior to COVID lawyers socialized together at both firm sponsored and non-sponsored events. The lawyers and staff are friendly and respectful; people from the bottom to the top are treated equally.”
  • “The pandemic put a bit of a damper on firm culture, but we have recently been making efforts to revitalize this aspect of the firm.”

Diversity at Kelley Drye & Warren LLP

"Diversity and Inclusion (D&I) are core values at Kelley Drye and we commit significant time and resources to our D&I efforts and to promoting equal opportunity in the practice of law. Diversity and Inclusion drive our approaches to recruitment, training and development, workplace policy making, promotion and advancement, and community engagement. Moreover, we encourage and support a workplace where all members are safe, respected, and valued and where varying perspectives and different life choices and experiences are included."

Getting Hired Here


  • “From a personality perspective, Kelley Drye looks for candidates who want to dive in and take on responsibility early in their careers.  All of the traditional factors are considered (grades, journal, law school attended) but given Kelley Drye's size and diversity of practice groups, it also looks for the right fit.”
  • “Hiring process is quite competitive for summer associates and first years, but seems less so for laterals. The firm targets schools in the NYC area like NYU, Fordham, Brooklyn, etc. In DC, Georgetown is a primary target. Grades and prior work experience are highly valued. There are training guidelines for conducting interviews; each interviewer is given a specific topic about the candidate's capability to cover.”
  • “The firm has a holistic view when it comes to looking at candidates and does not seem to deny candidates from schools that do not have high rankings.  If candidates went to law school in the office area, they usually have a good chance of getting an interview at least.”
  • “I think the firm values summer associates and those coming straight from law school graduation so that they can foster the growth of such individuals. For more nuanced departments, having laterals seems to make sense, but I get the sense that the firm is always seeking a person of diverse background (Not just in their personal self, but in their work experiences) to contribute to the firm's work.”