Law Life

Top 10 Cities with Great Quality of Life and Law Firm Presence
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A view of Denver. Courtesy of the Four Seasons.

Summary: What are the best places to live that also have big and medium-sized law firms?

In 2015, the population of Denver, Colorado ballooned by over 100,000. People not only flocked there to get a Rocky Mountain High, but the city also has great weather, Midwestern friendliness, and a lot of fun activities for families and young professionals. Therefore, it was no surprise when listed it as the best city for lawyers to live in.

Where released a list for the “Best Places to Live and Work in Big(gish) Law,” and Denver was ranked number one, followed by Austin, Texas and Fayetteville, Arkansas. To create the ranking, the website looked at U.S. News and World Report’s listing of the Best Cities to Live and compared that to The National Law Journal’s NLJ 500 law office branch data. The ten cities listed below have a reportedly amazing quality of life, and there are at least three BigLaw or medium-sized law firms, making the cities a top choice for lawyers.

Best Places to Live and Work in Big(gish) Law by

1. Denver, CO
2. Austin, TX
3. Fayetteville, AR
4. Raleigh-Durham, NC
5. Colorado Springs, CO
6. Boise, ID
7. Seattle, WA
8. Washington, D.C.
9. San Francisco, CA
10. San Diego, CA

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Colorado got two cities on the list–Denver and Colorado Springs. Denver has Holland & Hart; Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck, and Sherman & Howard, which all employ about 130 attorneys each. Colorado Springs has branches of Bryan Cave; Lewis Roca Rothberger Christie; and Sherman & Howard. Those offices have about 10 attorneys each.

Austin, which is known for its natural beauty and thriving music scene, was the second ranked Best City. Its office of Jackson Walker has 83 attorneys employed, according to Fayetteville was the third best city, and it has offices of the law firms Kutak Rock; Conner & Winters; and Hall, Estill, Hardwick, Gable, Golden & Nelson.

Raleigh-Durham’s Smith, Anderson, Blount, Dorsett, Mitchell & Jernigan employs 119 attorneys. The capital city of North Carolina also has the law firms Poyner Spruill and Parker Poe Adams & Bernstein, which both have around 60 attorneys employed each. Raleigh-Durham, which is known as the City of Oaks because of the prevalence of the trees, is one of the fastest growing cities in the United States and is home of two well-known universities, Duke and University of North Carolina.

In sixth place, Boise represented the Midwest. Locals enjoy a low cost of living, low crime rate, and a scenic environment, and lawyers have the option to work at branches of Perkins Coie or Holland & Hart.

Rounding out the list are the expensive cities of Seattle; Washington, D.C.; San Francisco; and San Diego. Each has a thriving social scene and reside on the coasts. Seattle’s branches of Perkins Coie; Davis Wright Tremaine; and K&L Gates are large with 268, 175, and 156 attorneys employed, respectively. While those numbers are impressive, our nation’s capital’s law firms top them. For instance, the Washington D.C. branch of Covington & Burling has 459 attorneys while Hogan Lovells employs 429.

In California, San Francisco has branches of Morrison & Foerster; Morgan, Lewis & Bockius; and Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe. Morrison employs 228 attorneys, while Morgan and Orrick employ 152 each. San Jose in Silicon Valley has offices for Littler Mendelson and Schwegman, Lundberg & Woessner.


What are your favorite cities to live in for lawyers? Let us know in the comments below.



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