Duane Morris

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Duane Morris LLP
HeadquartersPhiladelphia, Pennsylvania
No. of offices29
No. of attorneys800
Major practice areasFull Service
Key peopleMatthew A. Taylor (Chairman), Charles J. O'Donnell (COO)
Date founded1904
FounderRussell Duane, Roland S. Morris
Company typeLimited Liability Partnership

Duane Morris LLP is a law firm headquartered in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Founded in 1904 as Duane, Morris, Heckscher & Roberts,[1] the firm has offices in the United States, London, Singapore, Vietnam, Oman, Myanmar, Shanghai and Taiwan.[2] In addition to legal services, Duane Morris has independent affiliates employing approximately 100 professionals engaged in other disciplines.

Ranking and recognition[edit]

U.S. News & World Report and Best Lawyers awarded[when?] Duane Morris top-tier national rankings in bankruptcy and creditor debtor rights/insolvency and reorganization law, construction law and litigation, employee benefits (ERISA) law, health care law, immigration, insurance, patent law and venture capital law. Overall, 28 Duane Morris practice groups were nationally ranked.[3] Duane Morris was also named Law Firm of the Year for Construction Law.[citation needed]

Chambers USA 2017 edition ranked Duane Morris among national leaders in Construction, Healthcare, Insurance, and Immigration. Attorneys received 70 citations for excellence, and 21 practices were cited for excellence.[4]

In 2014, the Am Law 100 ranked Duane Morris as the 71st largest law firm in the U.S. based on gross revenue.[5]

In 2007, 2012, 2013, 2014 Duane Morris was named one of the Working Mother and Flex-Time Lawyers "50 Best Law Firms for Women," and was cited for its Women's Initiative Program. Duane Morris was featured in the December/January[when?] issue of the magazine, and on workingmother.com and flextime lawyers.com.[6] In 2007, Duane Morris was named one of the 20 best companies for working women by Philadelphia[7] and one of the top 50 law firms for women by Working Mother magazine and Flex-Time Lawyers LLC, a national consulting firm focused on the retention and advancement of women.[8]


Under the ten-year leadership of Chairman Sheldon Bonovitz from early 1998 to early 2008, Duane Morris grew from a little more than 200 lawyers in 1998 to more than 650 by January 2008. Revenues increased over that period from $70 million to $375 million for 2007.[9] Bonovitz stepped down at the beginning of January 2008, replaced by former Vice Chairman John J. Soroko.[citation needed] Harvard Business School completed a case study of the firm's growth entitled "Duane Morris: Balancing Growth and Culture at a Law Firm," which was presented in curriculum during the 2006-2007 academic year.[10][11]

In 2013, Duane Morris opened an office in Myanmar.[5] Also in 2013, Duane Morris opened an office in Oman.[12] As of 2017, the firm had more than 750 attorneys across 27 offices.[2][13]

In January 2020, Duane Morris LLP announced that they have reached a merger agreement with Satterlee Stephens. The combination expands Duane Morris' presence in New York City.[14]

Notable cases and deals[edit]

  • Heineken's $4.6B bid for Asia Pacific Breweries: In November 2012, Heineken N.V. closed its S$5.6 billion ($4.6 billion) takeover bid for Asia Pacific Breweries Ltd. (APBL), acquiring an additional 40-percent stake in the joint venture from its partner Fraser & Neave Ltd, a Singapore-based conglomerate. Duane Morris & Selvam, a joint law venture with Duane Morris, acted for Heineken in the transaction, which consolidated a controlling interest in APBL for the Amsterdam-based brewer of approximately 95 percent. The transaction marked one of the largest of its kind in Singapore in 2012. The deal was named Singapore M&A Deal of the Year by the ALB SE Asia Law Awards 2013.[15][16]
  • Lehigh Gas Partners IPO: Duane Morris completed a series of transactions in November 2012 that concluded with the $138 million initial public offering of wholesale motor fuel distributor Lehigh Gas Partners LP (NYSE: LGP).[17]
  • Markman v. Westview Instruments, Inc.: Duane Morris represented the plaintiff Markman in a patent infringement lawsuit.[18] After winning a jury verdict, Markman lost the case in a subsequent directed verdict for the defendant Westview due to questions of patent claims construction. The decision to reverse the jury verdict was affirmed by the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit and later in 1996 the U.S. Supreme Court. The result of this case is that so-called Markman hearings are now routinely conducted in patent infringement lawsuits so that a judge will rule on the legal meaning of patent claims before the lawsuit is argued before a jury.[citation needed]
  • Tobacco Industry Litigation: Along with the Pittsburgh law firm of Buchanan Ingersoll, Duane Morris represented the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania in a 46-state class action lawsuit against the tobacco industry. The litigation concluded in 1998 with a landmark $206 billion global settlement agreement for the 46 suing states.[19][20][21]

Notable alumni[edit]


  1. ^ "Past and Present". Duane Morris. 2013. Retrieved 29 May 2013.
  2. ^ a b "Office List". Duane Morris. 2013. Retrieved 29 May 2013.
  3. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2013-02-05. Retrieved 2012-12-17.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  4. ^ [1]
  5. ^ a b Am Law 100 Rankings
  6. ^ Working Mother
  7. ^ Duane Morris Website
  8. ^ Duane Morris press release, August 14, 2007
  9. ^ Sheldon Bonovitz Steps Down as Duane Morris Chairman, John Soroko Takes Over Law Firm Leadership January 4, 2008, The Legal Intelligencer
  10. ^ ABA Journal, Dec. 2006
  11. ^ Duane Morris Press Release, October 5, 2006
  12. ^ Duane Morris Launches in Oman With Joint Venture
  13. ^ "About Duane Morris". Duane Morris. 2013. Retrieved 29 May 2013.
  14. ^ Now, Delaware Business (2020-01-21). "New York law firm to merge with Duane Morris". Delaware Business Now. Retrieved 2020-02-24.
  15. ^ ALB SE Asia website
  16. ^ Duane Morris website
  17. ^ Duane Morris website
  18. ^ Duane Morris website
  19. ^ National Association of Attorneys General, Master Settlement Agreement Archived June 25, 2008, at the Wayback Machine, Page 174
  20. ^ PA Bulletin Volume 30
  21. ^ Duane Morris website Archived May 13, 2008, at the Wayback Machine

External links[edit]