The Top 49 Most Feared Law Firms in the World

The Top 7 Most Feared Law Firms in the World

The Top 49  Most Feared Law Firms in the World


Needing to find a powerful, competent law firm? Look no further than this guide on the 49 most feared legal establishments in the world.

When it comes to finding the right law firm, you’ll want to take a close look at which ones have a reputation for being the most feared around the world.

From boutique firms to multinational lawfirms, these are top 7 of the most respected, capable and intimidating legal establishments that people turn to in times of peril.


Learn about their areas of focus and more.

Finding the right lawyers to handle your legal needs can be a challenge.

When seeking out the 10 most feared law firms in the world, you’ll want to make sure to find out as much as you can about their specialties, services, and types of cases they’re known for handling.

Knowing these details can help you to choose the firm that is best equipped to win your case.

With the support of their legal teams and access to the world’s most advanced technology, top-tier law firms can tackle any number of difficult cases.

The best law firms have ample resources and recognize the importance of having a deep understanding of the related industries, laws, customs, policies, and technologies that pertain to each case they take on.

From specialist litigation and arbitration services to cartels investigations and criminal defense proceedings, these firms bring an array of unique skillsets that set them apart from smaller or less experienced practices.

With offices around the world and bar admission in multiple jurisdictions, these preeminent law firms are prepared to handle the toughest cases while delivering admirable results.


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#1. Quinn Emanuel

John B. Quinn, Eric Emanuel, David Quinto, and Phyllis Kupferstein founded the firm in 1986 for the sole purpose of handling litigation. A. William Urquhart joined the firm in 1988.

The company’s lack of a formal dress requirement contributes to its reputation. This lack of formal management committees continues to the firm’s corporate structure, with the exception of an advisory committee for the consideration of contingency fee matters.

Approximately one-third of the attorneys at Quinn attended Yale, Harvard, Stanford, Chicago, New York University, or Columbia law school.

The first AmLaw 100 firm with a female name partner is Quinn Emanuel.

The firm’s appellate practice is led by Kathleen Sullivan, former dean of Stanford Law School, who was included in the firm’s name in March 2010. Previously, this company was known as Quinn Emanuel Urquhart Oliver & Hedges.

Microsoft filed a Freedom of Information Act request in 2014 in relation with a purported contract between the company and the IRS.

The firm’s largest practice area is intellectual property litigation, and it currently employs over 200 attorneys who litigate IP issues.

ConnectU, the social network founded by the Winklevoss twins, was represented by Quinn Emanuel in its lawsuit accusing Facebook creator Mark Zuckerberg of stealing ideas for his own social network.

Quinn Emanuel later disclosed the confidential settlement sum of $65 million in an advertisement for the business.


#2. Latham and Watkins.

Latham and Watkins is one of the most famed law firms in the world, particularly when it comes to corporate law and business transactions. They are headquartered in Los Angeles and serve Fortune 500 companies and other prominent organizations globally.

Latham & Watkins is renowned for its representation of Apple Inc., Bank of America, Coca-Cola, Johnson & Johnson, Visa Inc., Warner Bros., Chevron Corp., and more.


#3. Jones Day.

Jones Day is considered the most respected law firm in the world when it comes to litigation.

The Ohio-based firm is known for its prowess in defending its clients’ interests in courtrooms and arbitrators around the world.

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The firm’s lawyers have consistently appeared top of their respective annual league tables across many practice areas such as antitrust, corporate crime and investigations, energy, healthcare, intellectual property and white collar defense.


#4. Kirkland and Ellis.

Kirkland & Ellis is the second most feared law firm in the world. Founded in Chicago, this U.S. legal powerhouse has been described as a “giant” and a “Colossus” thanks to its formidable network of lawyers who spends an immense amount of time on their cases.

It boasts a particularly impressive antitrust practice, which recently won the U.S Federal Trade Commission’s approval for AT&T’s $86 Billion take over of Time Warner – one of the biggest corporate deals of 2018.


#5. Baker McKenzie.

Baker McKenzie is the world’s leading law firm, with offices in more than 77 countries.

Through its network of lawyers, this “Biglaw” establishes looks after the entire range of legal disputes from bankruptcy and corporate disputes to contract and environmental matters. It also has a formidable trademarks practice, which works on behalf of some of the big names such as Apple, Virgin Media, Honda Motors, and Microsoft.

The firm’s international outlook makes it an especially attractive choice for those whose business takes them abroad regularly.


#6. Skadden

The American global legal firm Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP and Affiliates has its headquarters in New York City. The company consistently ranks among the top U.S. law firms by revenue since its founding in 1948.

The organization is well-known for its work in mergers and acquisitions.

Marshall Skadden, John Slate, and Les Arps started the business in 1948 in New York City.

In 1959, William Meagher and Elizabeth Head were hired as the firm’s first female attorneys. The firm’s name changed to Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom in 1960.

Peter Mullen, who would become Skadden’s first executive partner, joined the firm in 1961.

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In 1973, the company launched a second location in Boston. In 1981 Peggy L. Kerr became Skadden’s first female partner.

Skadden was one of the three largest legal firms in the United States in 1985. The company built its first overseas branch in Tokyo in 1987.

The Skadden Fellowship Foundation was established in 1988. In 2000, Skadden relocated its New York City headquarters to 4 Times Square, the “Condé Nast Building.”

Skadden, along with the City College of New York, founded the Skadden, Arps Honors Program in 2008 to increase diversity in law schools and the legal field.  As of June 2022, Skadden has 21 international offices.


# 7. Covington

Covington & Burling LLP is a worldwide American legal firm. The firm advises clients on commercial, litigation, regulatory, and public policy matters from its headquarters in Washington, D.C. named Covington & Burling as the number one legal firm in Washington, D.C. in 2021.

Additional offices are located in Beijing, Brussels, Frankfurt, Dubai, Johannesburg, London, Los Angeles, New York, Palo Alto, San Francisco, Seoul, and Shanghai.

On January 1, 1919, Judge J. Harry Covington and Edward B. Burling created Covington & Burling in Washington, D.C.

Covington established a London office in 1988, followed by a Brussels office in 1990.

In 1999, Covington combined with Howard, Smith & Levin, a 60-lawyer New York company, and created its first West Coast branch in San Francisco.

Covington and Institution Quraysh for Law & Policy (iQ), a Qatar-based international law firm and think tank, formed a strategic agreement in 2008 for the collaborative provision of legal and consulting services in the Middle East. As of mid-2009, both companies share the same office space in London.


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