The State of Law Jobs in Atlanta

Atlanta—Empire City of the South—is a great place to practice law. In addition to being the capital and most populous city in Georgia, it is also the ninth largest metropolitan area in the United States. Top companies headquartered in Atlanta include Home Depot, United Parcel Service (UPS), Coca Cola, Delta Airlines, Southern Company, and AFLAC. About 20 of the Fortune 500 companies have their headquarters in Georgia, with an additional 13 companies in the Fortune 1000 based in the state. Five other companies are based in Georgia. A lot of legal work in Georgia and the southeastern region of the United States is performed by Atlanta law firms.

As we approach the summer (Atlanta becomes “HOTlanta”) and the middle of 2018, it is a great time to discuss the state of legal jobs and the legal market in Atlanta.

The Am-Law 100 firms in Atlanta hired 114 associates in the past year. After a slow year in recruiting the year prior, litigation accounted for over 30% of new Atlanta hires. Another third came from corporate and real estate practices, and another third is made of labor and employment, intellectual property, and healthcare practices.

Practice areas that have grown:

  • Mergers & Acquisitions
  • Securities
  • Finance

Other practice areas that have seen significant activity include:

  • Real Estate
  • Labor & Employment
  • Health Care
  • Privacy

Areas that have experienced less growth:

  • Bankruptcy
  • Commercial Litigation
  • IP Litigation
  • Environmental

If you are considering changing firms, working with a legal recruiter provides ins beyond knowledge of the market. It is important for your search to remain confidential, especially since many of the firms in Atlanta are only looking for candidates that are already familiar with the local market while they work alongside their peer firms. Atlanta is a closely knit market tight-knit legal market. While it is possible to break into the Atlanta market, partnering with one of our recruiters can help you:

  • understand the “hidden” job market. Many firms in Atlanta hire as the right candidates are presented;
  • differentiate from the various firms and nuances within practice groups; and
  • negotiate the offer and contemplate the entire compensation package.

Four Atlanta-based firms are on the Am-Law 100: King & Spalding, Alston & Bird, Troutman Sanders, and Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton. Various of the other Am-Law firms also have offices in Atlanta.

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