Kirkland Chasing Prestige of Rivals with Bancroft Power Play

By Aebra Coe, Law360

Kirkland & Ellis LLP's hire of Paul Clement and the entire Bancroft PLLC legal team, announced Monday, creates one of the most formidable appellate practices in the U.S., but experts say the move may also be driven by forces outside a desire to dominate at the Supreme Court.

Experts agree that Kirkland's decision to hire all 17 attorneys at renowned appellate boutique Bancroft — including former Solicitor General and prolific U.S. Supreme Court litigator Paul D. Clement — allows the firm and its already strong litigation department to further strengthen its appellate practice.

And the group from Bancroft is not lacking in preeminence, according to Peter Ocko, a managing director at Major, Lindsey & Africa.

"Although Kirkland had a strong practice, the Bancroft hire firmly positions the firm as a truly elite appellate destination with Clement and [Supreme Court practitioner Erin] Murphy," Ocko said.

"Kirkland's lateral hiring focuses on best-in-breed, whether younger — like Andrew Calder in Houston from Simpson — or veteran stars like Jim Hurst from Winston in Chicago," Ocko said.

Read more of this article at Law360.

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