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A majority of Am Law 100 firms provide their numbers “officially” — that is, with the acquiescence of the firm’s partnership or management committee. Sometimes that cooperation comes at the outset of the data collection process. Other times it comes after we make dozens of phone calls and obtain the exact numbers or a close approximation. But all data — whether it comes officially from the firm or not — is rigorously investigated by our team of reporters. To put it another way: We don’t take any one person’s word. And because some firms refuse to cooperate with our data collection process at all, we acknowledge up front that some data comes from trusted but anonymous sources. In the end, we deliberately mix informed estimates with officially disclosed numbers and do not disclose which are which. Any reporting is fallible, of course. We have made mistakes with our data in the past — usually when a well-meaning partner steers us in the wrong direction — and we have done our best to correct errors. When we learned that we had misreported numbers for any firm last year, we corrected the data and the related percentages on this year’s charts. DEFINITIONS Equity and Nonequity Partners For our rankings, equity partners are those partners who receive a Schedule K-1 tax form and receive no more than half their compensation on a fixed-income basis. Nonequity partners are those who are not full participants in the firm’s profits, though they may have voting rights in firm matters. While we recognize that many firms have evolved a variety of partnership levels that may not fit these categories precisely, for this survey we define partners as equity or nonequity in order to portray a firm’s profits with a reasonable degree of verisimilitude. Fiscal Year In all cases, the revenue and profit figures we list are for the firm’s most recently completed fiscal year. Most Am Law 100 firms are on a calendar fiscal year. In most instances, our results are based on the accounting method used by the firm. Location of Firms We identify some firms as “international” or “national,” rather than identifying them by the city of their main office(s), based on the percentages of the firm’s attorneys who work in various regions of the country and the percentage that work outside the United States. Attorney numbers are obtained from the most recent NLJ 250 survey [ The National Law Journal, November 2002]. If 40 percent or more of the firm’s lawyers were located outside the United States, we identified the firm as international. If no more than 45 percent of the firm’s attorneys were located in any one region of the country, we identified the firm as national. Location of Regions and Markets We used the following classifications for identifying the geographical concentration of a firm’s offices and attorneys: • New England: Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Vermont • New York City • Mid-Atlantic: Delaware, Maryland, New Jersey, New York state (excluding New York City), Northern Virginia, Pennsylvania • Washington, D.C. • Southeast: Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North and South Carolina, Southern Virginia, Tennessee, West Virginia • Midwest: Arkansas, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, North and South Dakota, Ohio, Wisconsin • West Coast/Pacific Rim: Alaska, California, Hawaii, Oregon, Washington • West & Southwest: Arizona, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Nebraska, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Texas, Utah, Wyoming PRO BONO WORK We define pro bono work as legal services donated to organizations or individuals who could not otherwise afford them. We do not include nonlegal work for charities, and we do not include work done by lawyers in non-U.S. offices; the number of overseas lawyers is also determined using data collected in the NLJ 250 survey. We also asked firms to exclude paralegal time, bar association activities, community service, and time spent serving on boards or raising funds for charitable institutions. This definition is similar to the one used by the Pro Bono Institute for its law firm challenge, although unlike the PBI, we do not count pro bono work by summer associates and paralegals. PROFIT CALCULATIONS We count only equity partners in our per-partner categories, except for the “Compensation, All Partners” category. (That one measures compensation for both equity and nonequity partners.) Thus, no profit sharing with nonequity partners is included in the net operating income figure that we publish. We treat that sort of profit sharing as an expense. We also treat depreciation as an expense. However, we treat capital contributions that are withheld from distributions as income in calculating profits per partner. For firms whose fiscal year ended between Sept. 1, 2002, and Feb. 28, 2003, per-lawyer calculations are based on the number of lawyers at the firm on Aug. 31, 2002. This is intended to exclude first-year associates, who typically start in the fall but take several months to produce revenue. To ensure that profits per partner and leverage data are consistent, partners without equity shares in the firm’s profits (or who do not have more than a partial equity share in the firm’s profits) are not counted as partners in the survey. Similarly, retired partners and of counsel are not counted as partners, nor are payments made to them counted in net operating income. Many firms put their first-year equity partners or lateral equity partners on fixed incomes for a short time. When this is merely a transitional arrangement, and these partners are otherwise treated as equity partners, we categorize them as such. REVENUE CALCULATIONS We count fee income, but do not include income from ancillary businesses, equity investments or client charges for disbursements. TIES Firms that are tied in the rankings are listed in alphabetical order. Asterisks (*) are used to denote firms with more than one partnership tier. The Am Law 100 is a firmwide project of American Lawyer Media. Am Law 100 reporters include staff and freelancers from American Lawyer Media’s publications around the United States, including: The American Lawyer, The Recorder (San Francisco), Legal Times (Washington, D.C.), Texas Lawyer, Fulton County Daily Report (Atlanta), New York Law Journal, Legal Intelligencer (Philadelphia), Daily Business Review (Miami), New Jersey Law Journal , and The Connecticut Law Tribune .

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