The National Law Journal and are accepting nominations for our inaugural list of America’s Elite Trial Lawyers. For this recognition program, we are focusing on U.S.-based firms that have done exemplary and cutting-edge work on behalf of plaintiffs.

Potential nominees should have scored at least one significant plaintiffs win between Jan. 1, 2013, and June 30, 2014, 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 percent 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.

We would like you to submit three documents:

1. A list of cases with brief descriptions of their significance

  • Describe litigation results that demonstrate excellence. The list can and should include results obtained pre-trial or at trial.
  • Provide results that occurred between Jan. 1 2013 and June 30, 2014, and briefly describe each case.
  • Please rank the cases in order of importance. By importance we mean both significance of the result for your client and contribution made by your lawyers.
  • Please include the names of clients (if the case is a class action, a lead plaintiff will suffice), lead partners, and opposing counsel, as well as contact information.
  • Include specific dollar amounts where relevant.
  • If your clients were represented by more than one firm, please specify your firm’s role.
  • In your submission, please name someone at your firm whom we may contact with questions.
  • Include three client references, including phone numbers or e-mail addresses.

2. An essay of up to 1,000 words (shorter is perfectly acceptable) explaining why a firm should win, along with supporting documents. Factors we’re looking for are importance and difficulty of the matters handled; the quality of opposing counsel, ingenuity and diligence. This is no place for false modesty! Please describe the firm’s track record, and describe your biggest loss during the specified period; we would like to know how the firm adjusts to setbacks and what it learned from the experience.

3. An Excel spread sheet which captures basic information from your submission. Please download the Excel sheet here.

  • Provide data about the size of the firm as of June 30, 2014 (including the number of partners, associates and other).

TO SUBMIT: Please submit an electronic copy of your firm’s submission (including Word document and Excel submission sheet) to Or submit your entry using our secure site:

To download a copy of these submission guidelines, please CLICK HERE.

For answers to commonly asked questions about Elite Trial Lawyers, please visit our FAQs.

If you have any further questions, please e-mail

The deadline for submissions is Aug. 8, 2014.