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For Corporate America and their GCs, this was the year of litigation. For the country’s biggest law firms, the only litigation crisis they faced was the fear that they might not have enough associates to handle the torrent of new matters. All of which made the efforts by our sibling publication, The American Lawyer, to pick a Litigation Department of the Year especially difficult. As a service to our readers, Corporate Counsel decided to include selections from the survey in this issue. The American Lawyer‘s full report appears in its January issue or online at http://www.law.com/jsp/article.jsp?id=1071719768419. The American Lawyer conducted four competitions. It invited every firm on the 2002 Am Law 200 list to vie for Litigation Department of the Year. In addition, each firm could choose to compete in one litigation specialty � Intellectual Property, Labor and Employment, or Product Liability. In all, the magazine received about 120 submissions. To use a baseball analogy, The American Lawyer wasn’t selecting members for the Hall of Fame; it was choosing the season’s most valuable players. The magazine asked the firms to report on their litigation records between January 1, 2002, and June 30, 2003. (Lawyer numbers listed throughout are as of August 1, 2003.) Specifically, it asked for no more than five examples of “significant achievements” in six categories: pretrial, at trial, on appeal, before the U.S. Supreme Court, pro bono, and a catchall that included arbitrations and settlements. In addition, it asked firms for client references, names of opposing counsel, and a list of firm partners who tried cases to verdict during those months � which for some firms proved to be a very short list, indeed. Teams of reporters and editors read each application. On the basis of those filings The American Lawyer winnowed the candidates and then supplemented the submissions with reporting. The magazine developed a short list of finalists and then visited each of them, offering these master advocates the chance to explain why they should win. Linked below, we present an in-depth look at the winners of the litigation and labor departments of the year, the finalists in both of those categories, and lists of the winners and runners-up for the product liability and intellectual property specialties. Congratulations! And let the appeals begin. Perfect Casting Class Killers

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