Overview

Introduction

King of the elite law firms, Cravath basically wrote the book on legal practice and lawyer training. The firm attracts the best of the best and boasts a professional atmosphere rooted in respect. Those who thrive under pressure, with a strong work ethic and intellectual curiosity will fare well at the firm. Cravath has a strong reputation for its work in antitrust, banking and credit, capital markets, corporate governance, executive compensation and benefits, M&A, securities litigation, tax, trusts and estates, and white c...

Firm Stats


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Total No. Attorneys (2021)

250 - 500

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No. of Partners Named (2021)

11

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Featured Rankings

Vault Law 100


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No. of Summer Associates (2021)

92 total (89 2Ls; 3 1Ls)


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Base Salary

All offices


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No. of U.S. Offices

1

Vault Verdict

Getting through the doors of Cravath is no easy task—not that anyone would expect to just saunter into the nation’s most prestigious firm. Candidates should prepare for a callback that could last all day. Lawyers get along well, and there are high levels of respect, but the atmosphere can be intense, with long hours and high expectations. Those looking for hand-holding probably won’t find it here—although the firm does offer many CLEs and a useful mentoring, including an Associate Advisor Program that pairs mid-levels with juniors. Partners are invested in associate development and value associate input. Making partner at Cravath is difficult, and some feel the process is opaque. But associates agree that having Cravath on their resumes opens many, many doors. Reviews are mixed wh...

Firm's Response

The development of our lawyers is our most important long-term objective. 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 personal investment in our associates is the best way to train and cultivate talented lawyers. Because...

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 two strategically placed offices in New York and London. 

Storied History, Market Leader

Cravath is one of the nation’s oldest law firms, and it certainly has made its mark. Firm founders Richard Blatchford and William Seward both served in Lincoln’s administration—Seward was the Secretary of State. Over the years, the firm has 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 mark...

Associate Reviews


  • “I think we have a very respectful work environment where attorneys focus on getting the job done and doing the best work we can for our clients, and that is the top priority. There are still lots of opportunities to socialize and get to know other attorneys, but there is no pressure to do so.”
  • “It's been harder to socialize during quarantine (obviously), but the firm has done a good job of keeping the culture going and trying to organize online events/meetups.”
  • “Cravath's culture is collegial and professional. Attorneys are self-motivated and hard working. Due to long hours, socialization is more occasional, but the firm and teams try to incorporate [group] events and activities. Attorneys, however, are mostly focused on the work and build professional relationships that way.”
  • “It is Cravath—it is an intense place. But, the intensity forces you to be the best attorney that you can be.”

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

"Our overarching goal is to provide the best possible representation to our clients. We have long held the conviction that excellence and diversity go hand in hand, and that we cannot provide our clients with the highest level of representation unless we recruit and retain outstanding lawyers from diverse backgrounds, with different perspectives, experiences and insights. Just as we pride ourselves on the diversity of our practice, we are proud of our commitment to promoting the diversity of our people at all levels. Faiza Saeed is our..."

Getting Hired Here


  • “I believe Cravath is looking for hard-working, personable people.”
  • “The vast majority of each associate class hails from Harvard, Columbia, and NYU. The firm seems to care more about grades than other peer firms but also focuses heavily on personality—which is why callback interviews last all day and usually (during non-pandemic times) include a lunch component as well.”
  • “The interviews are mostly casual and conversational with the goal of getting to know how enthusiastic the candidate is about working for the firm and whether the candidate is someone that we would like to spend our time working with.”
  • “The interview process is really conversation based. Partners and associates want to have conversations with candidates and get a sense for their intellectual curiosity, work ethic, and ability to get along with others at the firm. Grades [and] extracurricular activities (law review, clubs, etc.) also seem to play a role.”

Practice Area Q&A’s


Gary A. Bornstein

Antitrust

Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP
Sasha Rosenthal-Larrea

Partner

Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP
Benjamin Gruenstein

Partner

Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP
David J. Perkins

Partner

Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP
Vanessa A. Lavely

Partner

Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP

Perks & Benefits