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Yale Law Women Release List of Top Family-Friendly and Female-Friendly Firms
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Summary: The annual list released by Yale Law Women for family-friendly firms included a separate list of female-friendly firms in this year’s report.

The Top 10 list of family-friendly law firms has been released by Yale Law Women for the 13th year. This year they included an additional list – a list of female-friendly firms. Big Law Business reported that while past lists have had a subsection of gender equity, having a separate list shows “that not all women have non-work family obligations, and not all attorneys with family obligations are women.”


The female-friendly list was built by comparing gender equity at all hiring levels, the number of women in leadership positions, and a firm’s training and mentorship programs.

Megan Mumford, first-year Yale law student and co-chair of the Top 10 committee, said, “Part of the purpose of this report is to get firms thinking about what other firms are doing, what’s being rewarded, and what future associates are going to care about.”

Top 10 Female-Friendly Law Firms (in alphabetical order):

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Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer

Bryan Cave

Hogan Lovells

Holland & Knight

Katten Muchin Rosenman


McDermott Will & Emery

Morgan, Lewis & Bockius

Morrison & Foerster

Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe

The family-friendly list is compiled by looking at compensation policies and billable hour requirements, parental leave, and part-time or flex-time options. They also look at the family leave policies and who is taking advantage of the available time off. Mumford stated, “If only women take it, it indicates there is still a career block to taking it.”

Top 10 Family-Friendly Law Firms (in alphabetical order):

Bryan Cave

Fish & Richardson

Hunton & Williams

McDermott Will & Emery

Morgan, Lewis & Bockius

Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe

Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman

Reed Smith

Vinson & Elkins


When comparing the two lists, there are a number of differences. Mumford explained that this is because a number of firms are lacking in promoting women to top leadership positions. Of the participating firms, only Littler, Ropes & Gray, and WilmerHale reported having at least 25 percent women in equity partnership.

Mumford added, “The thing we have seen a lot of promise on is the promotion of women to partner, so the flow is coming in. But only a few partners are hired each year so it takes a while.”

The lists are created by sending surveys out to all Vault 100 law firms and then comparing policies of the roughly 50 firms that responded. The results are weighted based on surveys from Yale Law graduates of all genders working at those firms.

Do you think women still face roadblocks in their career as lawyers? What do you think is the greatest struggle they face? Share your thoughts with us in the comments below.

To learn more about female attorneys and the struggles they face, read these articles:



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