Our annual Appellate Hot List recognizes firms that made exemplary contributions to appellate practice during the past year. We asked our readers to nominate firms with at least one significant appellate victory since January 2010 and that had demonstrated an impressive track record overall. We supplemented this material with our own extensive research to arrive upon the 17 firms listed here. We understand that appellate victories frequently are collaborations, and regret that we lack space to fully recognize all the firms that contributed to the cases listed. We highlighted cases that affected the course of industries, vindicated important constitutional rights, and in which an awful lot of money was at stake. We gave extra weight to cases in which the firms pulled off come-from-behind wins.


The firms we honored this year are: Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld; Baker Botts; Covington & Burling; Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher; Hogan Lovells; Jenner & Block; Jones Day; Kellogg, Huber, Hansen, Todd, Evans & Figel; King & Spalding; Latham & Watkins; Mayer Brown; Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe; Proskauer Rose; Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan; Robbins, Russell, Englert, Orseck, Untereiner & Sauber; Sidley Austin; and Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale and Dorr.


Team took off the gloves defending Chevron
Lawyers at Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher turned to an often ignored section of U.S. law to obtain depositions, documents and outtakes of a documentary film in an effort to prove that environmental contamination claims brought in Ecuador against their client, Chevron Corp., are fraudulent.
NLJ VIDEO : Interview with Gibson Dunn’s Theodore Boutrous Jr. 

Doing well with what comes down the pike
David Frederick describes himself and his colleagues at Kellogg, Huber, Hansen, Todd, Evans & Figel as “pike lawyers,” a term he first heard from a venerable local practitioner, Jacob Stein. “We take whatever comes down the pike,” Frederick said. In recent years, more and more clients have been coming down the pike to see Frederick and his colleagues for appellate help, especially at the U.S. Supreme Court level.

Legal cliff diver lands on his feet at Latham
When he left his position as solicitor general of the United States in late January 2009, Gregory Garre eschewed the comfort of a return to his prior law firm, the former Hogan & Hartson, for the unknown territory of Latham & Watkins. His transition was eased by the well-regarded appellate shop that awaited him.

FURTHER READING:The 2010 Appellate Hot List