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Overview

Introduction

One of the largest firms in Michigan, Warner Norcross & Judd prides itself on being capable of handling "your business matters from start to finish." And it's not only comprehensive and big, it's good. The firm has earned the title of “Best Corporate Law Firm in West Michigan” more than once from Corporate Board Member magazine.

Firm Stats


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Total No. Attorneys (2020)


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Base Salary

1st year: $100,000...

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No. of U.S. Offices



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No. of International Offices



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Major Office Locations

Bloomfield Hills, MI...


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Major Practice Areas

Business...

Vault Verdict

Michigan-based Warner Norcross often recruits from local schools as well as across the Midwest. Attorneys rave about the firm’s collaborative, friendly culture, which encourages attorneys to socialize regularly. Associates work at or above their level, and while there is some formal training, associates mostly learn by doing. Partners are respectful and happy to help associates grow in their careers, with few exceptions. The firm is very flexible in how hours are put in, and compensation is completely lockstep by year. Partnership is realistic, but the firm also offers senior counsel and part-time positions if that’s what associates prefer as they grow in their careers. Exit opportunities are promising, and the firm is willing to work with associates who decide to transition elsew...

About the Firm

One of the largest firms in Michigan, Warner Norcross & Judd prides itself on being capable of handling "your business matters from start to finish." And it's not only comprehensive and big, it's good. The firm has earned the title of “Best Corporate Law Firm in West Michigan” more than once from Corporate Board Member magazine.

From Chihuahuas to Cars

As West Michigan's largest law firm, Warner Norcross handles a little bit of everything. The 75-year-old firm’s core strengths include employee benefits, environmental law, and trusts and estates, though it is also highly regarded in such areas as bankruptcy, construction, corporate affairs, immigration, information technology, international law, and securities. The firm has also seen it...

Associate Reviews


  • “The firm's culture is unlike any other I have heard of. The lawyers are great friends, socialize together, and are a close-knit group. The firm puts on annual parties, golf outings, and retreats for the attorneys that are well attended.”
  • “Very collaborative. Not what you would expect at a large firm. The firm organizes a lot of social outings and opportunities for attorneys and staff to mingle.”
  • “Weekly events for lawyers to socialize after work at the office—food and drinks [are] provided.”
  • “The firm is a very social place with a lot of social opportunities. The famous WNJ tradition though is the Christmas skit party.”
  • “The partners treat all of the associates—and the staff [for] that matter—with respect. … The firm is also very transparent with everyone involved in the process of keeping the firm up and running.”
  • “Partners are very respectful and inclusive.  My experience has been fantastic.”
  • “… Reviews are conducted once yearly and twice as associates approach partnership. Referring timekeepers are solicited for feedback and the review is approved by the professional staff committee and the associate's practice group.
  • “There is flexibility in where and when you work. There are no "set hours" to be at the firm. You can also work from home or in one of the 9 offices around the state of MI. I work in litigation, so my workload always fluctuates, but I feel I am given the appropriate amount of work.”
  • “Sometimes the workload can be intense, but that is expected as an associate at a large firm.”
  • “The firm has a reduced hours policy for associates that allows them to remain on a partnership track.”
  • “Compensation and bonuses are on a fixed system and very transparent. Every third year, for example, makes the same amount, and the bonuses are equal assuming you meet your hour requirement. This reduces the competition among associates and really fosters a collaborative work environment.”
  • “I spend the vast majority of my time on substantive legal work. It is appropriate for my level of experience—even if at times it can be daunting to be given a new task to learn on the fly. I have never felt that I have been given work that is beneath my skill set, and have been involved by partners on substantive work from day one. Partners listen to associates and value their input.”
  • “As a third year, I am given a lot of substantive legal work—motion drafting, appearing in court, research, etc.”
  • “We are all given a mentor hand-picked to suit our interest and personality. The firm will also cover any training or conference we would like to attend.”
  • “Recently, associate training—at least for litigators—has improved, but most training is informal, on-the-job training.”
  • “Partnership is totally attainable here for those who stick around and do good work.  There are also senior counsel positions, from which attorneys may eventually be promoted to partner.  However, the majority of associates who make it that far become partners, rather than senior counsel.”
  • “Partnership is realistic, and a number of people go the senior counsel route. There are good exit opportunities, as a number of associates have left recently for good jobs. The firm is well positioned in the market.”
  • “Promotion to partnership [is] very realistic and expectations are clearly outlined. There are several non-partner roles to which senior associates have the ability to transition. The firm also promotes part-time work if that is better for the associate. The firm encourages internal dialogue between an associate thinking of leaving and the recruiting coordinator to openly discuss exit options should the associate feel that is the best route.”

Diversity at Warner Norcross + Judd LLP

"Warner Norcross & Judd is playing a leading role in working to increase the diversity of the profession in Michigan. In 2010, the firm was a charter signatory to the State Bar of Michigan's Pledge for Diversity and Inclusion. Our Diversity Partner serves as co-chair of State Bar's Diversity and Inclusion Advisory Committee. In June 2011, our Managing Partner joined with the managing partners of 11 other law offices in Grand Rapids and the President of the Grand Rapids Bar Association in forming the Managing Partners Diversity..."

Getting Hired Here


  • “The firm typically looks at in-state (Michigan) and Midwestern law schools. I believe my firm looks for someone who is serious about committing to long-term employment with the firm; fits within the [collegial] culture; [and] has superior grades, [a] friendly personality, and [the] willingness to work both individually and as a team.”
  • “The interview process has changed significantly since I was an associate in an attempt to make the process more fair.”
  • “The questions were diverse and asked over a three-hour period by six different interviewers in half-hour increments.”