Wood, Smith, Henning & Berman, a 150-attorney firm headquartered in Los Angeles, has opened a New York office with six-attorneys from Wilson Elser Moskowitz Edelman & Dicker.
The partners include three former Wilson partners: Michael Coffey, Tracy Abatemarco and James Tyrie. Coffey is the office’s managing partner. Three associates also joined the firm.
The attorneys, who left, Wilson Elser late last year, had been working in a temporary space for Wood Smith in White Plains while the firm searched for a Manhattan office. It recently secured a subletting arrangement from Jones Day at 222 East 41st St. for about three years, said firm managing partner Daniel Berman. The Midtown office opened Monday.
The firm is aiming to double its size in New York by the end of 2014, Berman said. He said the office will handle litigation, including in real estate, construction, environmental and products liability matters. “They brought a lot of business with them,” Berman said of the team from Wilson Elser.
Some of the firm’s New York clients include Turner Construction and DeSales Media Group.
Wood Smith and the former Wilson Elser team were introduced by a mutual client, Berman said. “There’s a lot of competition [in New York], and it would be very hard for a California-based firm to expand in New York without having strong ties to the legal community,” he said. Berman said attorney hourly rates in the New York office range from $200 to $450.