David Madrid remembers his last day at Cooley Godward, or rather the evening of his last day.

He, four other partners and a few associates had just left Cooley’s Palo Alto office for the last time, having announced that they were breaking away to form the intellectual property litigation boutique Day Casebeer Madrid Winters & Batchelder. Most of the principals were huddled at the Old Pro, a bar across the street, somewhat dazed by what they had just done.