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McDermott Will & Emery

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McDermott Will & Emery
HeadquartersRiver Point
Chicago, Illinois
No. of offices23
No. of attorneys1177
No. of employees2,300+
Major practice areasGeneral practice
RevenueIncrease $1.82 billion USD (2022) [1]
Profit per equity partnerIncrease $3.32 million USD (2022) [1]
Date foundedFebruary 2, 1934
  • Edward H. McDermott
  • William M. Emery
Company typemultiple legal entities, primarily limited liability partnerships, coordinated through service agreements[2]

McDermott Will & Emery is an international law firm with a diversified business practice. The firm is one of the largest-grossing law firms in the United States and globally,[3] and its lawyers represent a wide range of commercial, industrial, and financial enterprises.


Chicago lawyers Edward H. McDermott and William M. Emery founded the firm in 1934. They were initially focused as a tax law firm, and a corporate department was established in 1941 when Howard A. Will joined the firm. As the century progressed, the firm added capabilities across the legal spectrum, eventually opening eight more offices. By 1984, the firm had amassed one hundred fifty lawyers. Over the ensuing twenty years, the firm grew; in 2004, McDermott numbered over one thousand lawyers.[4][non-primary source needed]

In November 2023, amid a wave of antisemitic incidents at elite U.S. law schools, McDermott Will & Emery was among a group of major law firms that sent a letter to top law school deans warning them that an escalation in incidents targeting Jewish students would have corporate hiring consequences:

We look to you to ensure your students who hope to join our firms after graduation are prepared to be an active part of workplace communities that have zero tolerance policies for any form of discrimination or harassment, much less the kind that has been taking place on some law school campuses.[5]


McDermott has more than 1,177 lawyers across twenty-three offices in the United States, Europe, and Asia.[6] It has a strategic alliance with MWE China Law Offices in Shanghai, China.[7]

The firm consists of multiple legal entities that are coordinated through service agreements:[2]

  • McDermott Will & Emery LLP – based in Illinois, U.S., with other offices throughout the country and a foreign office in South Korea
  • McDermott Will & Emery AARPI[a] – France
  • McDermott Will & Emery Belgium LLP – based in Delaware, U.S., with offices in Belgium
  • McDermott Will & Emery Rechtsanwälte Steuerberater LLP – based in Delaware, U.S., with offices in Germany
  • McDermott Will & Emery Studio Legale Associato[b] – Italy
  • McDermott Will & Emery UK LLP – United Kingdom

Recognition and rankings[edit]

  • In 2010, recognized by The Chambers Global Guide for excellence in numerous practice areas; several McDermott lawyers were ranked as leaders in their field.[10]
  • In 2009, the Human Rights Campaign named McDermott Will & Emery as one of the record numbers of US companies earning the top rating of 100 percent in its annual Corporate Equality Index.[11]
  • For the third quarter of 2008, McDermott's Mergermarket rankings included the top 20 for the number of US buyouts, the top 10 for the number of US-Midwest region deals, and the top 10 by the value of deals in Swedish M&A. According to Mergerstat, McDermott ranked in the top 20 for US-announced deals and among the top for US middle market advisors and US private equity advisors based on both value and number of deals.[12][13]
  • In 2006, The National Law Journal named McDermott one of the top 15 defense litigation law firms in the United States on its annual Defense Hot List.[14] Also in 2006, the firm was named one of the top 10 law firms on BTI Consulting Group's Market Movers list.[15]
  • In 2005, the firm was named one of the top 10 law firms representing the growing healthcare industry in the United States.[16]

Notable alumni[edit]


  1. ^ In France, an AARPI or Association d'Avocats à Responsabilité Professionnelle Individuelle (Association of Lawyers with Individual Professional Responsibility) is a form of limited liability partnership established by a 1954 government decree rescinding the prohibition on joint exercise structures in the legal profession.[8]
  2. ^ In Italy, a Studio Legale Associato (Associated Legal Practice) is similar in structure to a limited liability partnership. They were first established in 1997 when a law was passed rescinding a previous prohibition on libero professionisti (lawyers, accountants, doctors, chartered surveyors, etc.) forming such partnerships.[9]


  1. ^ a b Smith, Patrick (2023-02-27). "McDermott Sees 9% Revenue, PEP Growth, With 'Recession-Resistant' Practices". Retrieved 2023-02-27.
  2. ^ a b "McDermott Will & Emery - Disclaimer". Archived from the original on 2015-06-07.
  3. ^ AmLaw 100, The American Lawyer, 2020
  4. ^ "McDermott Will & Emery - Firm History". Archived from the original on 2015-02-23.
  5. ^ Sorkin, Andrew Ross; Mattu, Ravi; Warner, Bernhard; Kessler, Sarah; Merced, Michael J. de la; Hirsch, Lauren; Livni, Ephrat (2 November 2023). "Law Firms Warn Universities About Antisemitism on Campus". The New York Times. Retrieved 2 November 2023.
  6. ^ "McDermott Sees 9% Revenue, PEP Growth, With 'Recession-Resistant' Practices". Law.com International. Retrieved 2023-02-27.
  7. ^ "MWE China Law Offices Opens in Shanghai". mwechinalaw.com. Archived from the original on 2007-06-23.
  8. ^ Barreau de Paris (28 March 2017). "L'Association d'Avocats à Responsabilité Professionnelle Individuelle". Avocatparis.org. Retrieved 10 January 2019 (in French).
  9. ^ Cassano, Giuseppe (2012). La responsabilità civile. p. 80. Giuffrè Editore. ISBN 8814164843 (in Italian)
  10. ^ "The Chambers Global Guide 2010".
  11. ^ "HRC 2009 Corporate Equality Index" (PDF). hrc.org. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2009-03-26.
  12. ^ "Mergermarket league tables & profiles". Mergermarket.
  13. ^ "FactSet Mergerstat LLC, Home Page". Archived from the original on 2007-06-30. Retrieved 2009-04-09.
  14. ^ Defense Hot List, The National Law Journal. 2006.
  15. ^ BTI Market Movers: Law Firms Shaping the Legal Market BTI Consulting Group. 2006.
  16. ^ Analysis of lawsuits brought by or against the 250 largest publicly traded health care companies in 2005. Health Law360.

External links[edit]