2021 Vault Rankings
- Pro Bono#1
At a Glance
“Great mentors, great culture, great responsibility.”
“The management of the firm really cares about retaining and investing in the people who work here.”
“You cannot hide, it is a small firm and everyone knows you.”
About Patterson Belknap Webb & Tyler LLP
With around 200 attorneys working out of its single outpost in Manhattan, Patterson Belknap may seem like a modest operation relative to New York’s megafirms, but the firm holds its own. Handling litigation and corporate matters on behalf of clients from such disparate fields as media, financial services, banking, private equity and life sciences, the firm also represents nonprofits and foundations on a wide range of matters.
A Distinguished Career
Patterson Belknap was founded in New York City in 1919. Leading name partner Robert P. Patterson was a veteran, judge— sitting on the U.S. District Court and then the Second Circuit—and Harry Truman's Secretary of War. In the late 1940s, Patterson joined the firm that would become Patterson Belknap, joined by his Harvard classmates Vanderbilt Webb and Chauncey Belknap. Fourth and final name partner, Harold R. Tyler joined the firm in the late 1970s. Tyler was an eminent New York federal judge, Deputy U.S. Attorney General, and a leader of the New York City Bar Association.
Big Apple Loyalty
Today Patterson Belknap is a full-service firm with commercial law and litigation strength across 20 practice groups. Despite litigating in courts across the country and handling international matters, the firm has decided to remain in one office to maintain the culture and quality control that come with practicing so closely together. In 2007, the firm established a dedicated team to tackle subprime lending and credit crisis matters. The group kept busy working on disputes related to residential mortgage backed securities, CDOs, credit default swaps and other complex financial instruments.
More recently, the firm launched a privacy and cybersecurity practice. The firm also has a growing white collar defense practice that handles sensitive government investigations, internal investigations, and parallel civil actions for large companies, nonprofits, and individuals. And the firm couldn’t have chosen a better location for its well-established art and museum practice—Patterson Belknap has worked with several of the city's largest museums, collectors, and art estates (including the Jean-Michel Basquiat authentication committee).
Patterson has carved out a key niche with its law firm defense practice, which represents individual attorneys as well as other law firms—from small local shops to large regional and national practices. In fact, Patterson has become one of the nation's heavy hitters in defending legal malpractice and fraud claims. In addition, Patterson helps other lawyers and practices settle disputes about partnership compensation, manage disciplinary proceedings, and handle conflict disclosure claims.
Committed to Doing Good
Patterson earned a perfect rating in the 2020 Human Rights Campaign Foundation Corporate Equity Index and proudly boasts that since 2004, 100 percent of the firm’s attorneys have participated in pro bono projects each year, something that’s earned them continuous top rankings in The American Lawyer.
Why Work Here
About Patterson Belknap
Patterson Belknap’s success over the last 100 years is rooted in five core values: Excellence, Integrity, Accountability, Inclusion, and Service. These core values are demonstrated each day by our attorneys and staff, and are fundamental to how we work with each other and our clients. In celebration of the Firm’s centennial anniversary, we asked some of the people who have helped make the Firm what it is today to reflect on their experiences:
1133 Avenue of the Americas
New York, NY 10036
Phone: (212) 336-2000
Managing Partner: Lisa E. Cleary
Hiring Partners: Catherine Williams, Josh Goldberg
Total No. Attorneys 2021:
150 - 250
No. of Partners Named 2021:
1st year: $190,000
2nd year: $200,000
3rd year: $220,000
4th year: $255,000
5th year: $280,000
Chief People, Diversity, and Professional Development Officer
No. of U.S. Offices: 1
No. of International Offices: 0
New York, NY
Law Firm Defense
Privacy & Data Security
Structured Finance Litigation
Tax Exempt Organizations
White Collar Defense and Investigations
*See firm website for complete list of practice areas and industries.