The National Law Journal is pleased to announce the opening of nominations for the 2021 Elite Trial Lawyers Awards, which spotlight industry-leading plaintiffs lawyers and firms.

This year’s Elite Trial Lawyers awards ceremony will be held on July 29.

The deadline for submissions has been extended to April 2, 2021.

Click here to submit a nomination for Elite Trial Lawyers.

ALM’s Elite Trial Lawyers has recognized U.S.-based law firms that have performed exemplary and cutting-edge work on behalf of plaintiffs since 2015. The 2021 program seeks nominations in the following areas of law:

  • Antitrust
  • Aviation
  • Bankruptcy Law
  • Business Torts
  • Catastrophic Injury
  • Civil Rights
  • Class Action
  • Consumer Protection
  • Disability Rights
  • Discrimination
  • Elite Women of the Plaintiffs Bar
  • Employment Rights
  • Environmental Protection
  • Financial Products
  • Governmental Representation
  • Human Rights
  • Immigration
  • Insurance Liability
  • Intentional Torts
  • Mass Torts
  • Medical Malpractice
  • Pharmaceutical Litigation
  • Privacy/Data Breach
  • Products Liability
  • Securities Litigation
  • Trial Strategy Innovation (demonstrate how your firm evolved an area of law, the way courts or companies operate or how cases are tried.)

Specialty Awards

The Keith Givens Visionary Award

This award honors a member of the bar who has shown extraordinary creativity in bringing the legal industry together, developing new opportunities for business growth, and supporting the professional development of attorneys across the country. 500 word essay.

Lifetime Achievement Award

This award honors members of the plaintiffs bar whose career and service have made an indelible mark on their community, their clients, and/or the practice or business of law. 500 word essay.

Rising Stars of the Plaintiffs Bar 

We will honor a select group of young lawyers who are up-and-comers in the plaintiffs bar, already demonstrating their litigation prowess, service to the community, and/or impact on their firm. Nominees must not have turned age 40 by the nomination deadline. 300 word essay.

Diversity Initiative Award

This award will honor the plaintiffs firm that demonstrates a concerted and successful effort to promote diversity within its organization or the profession at large. Clear examples, an explanation of the strategy or program, and any supporting data should be included in the submission. 500 word essay.

Potential nominees should have scored at least one significant plaintiffs win between January 2020 and January 2021, and possess an impressive track record of wins within the past three to five years. A “significant win” means prevailing in a bench or jury trial or in a major settlement in which the stakes are high—for example, a substantial amount of money is on the line or the outcome could affect litigation strategy or the results in similar cases nationally.

To be eligible for this list, firms should devote at least 50% of their litigation resources to plaintiffs work.

Among the criteria that we may use to evaluate firms and/or lawyers:

  • Performance in significant cases, including key rulings, victories at trial and settlements
  • Verdict dollar amount, size of punitive damages penalties, cash settlements
  • Complexity of procedure and substantive law
  • Duration of case, and/or number of class members
  • Willingness to take on large cases and to persevere in the face of adversity
  • Volume of cases handled in a particular time period (sum of accumulated verdicts or settlements)
  • The novelty of claim, cause of action, or theory of recovery
  • Impact—litigation results that changed a government, business practice (for instance, the way that credit card fees are handled; or the pricing structure in a particular industry)
  • Feedback or acknowledgment from the bench
  • Firm size in relation to impact or recovery amount
  • Each result must reflect achievements by lawyers practicing at your firm; do not submit wins by lateral hires while at their old firms.
  • Please do not submit appellate victories. They do not count for this survey.
  • Unless otherwise marked, all information submitted will be considered on-the-record.

Some critical notes to consider:

  • Confidential information: All information submitted will be considered on the record and included in our selection process. Please, do not submit confidential information, including client names or client matters.
  • How does ETL differ from Winning Litigators: Unlike National Law Journal’s Winning Litigators, Elite Trial Lawyers exclusively spotlights plaintiffs lawyers’ achievements.

If you have a case you would like to submit, but it does not fit within any of the categories, please contact Pearl Wu at [email protected].

Finalists within the categories above will be announced in May. Winners will be recognized at the Elite Trial Lawyers event in July.


© 2024 ALM Global, LLC, All Rights Reserved. Request academic re-use from All other uses, submit a request to [email protected]. For more information visit Asset & Logo Licensing.