Careers

We hire new associates to become the top litigators in the country. We offer them the opportunity to work with an unparalleled team of accomplished trial lawyers. Young lawyers are given significant stand-up opportunities before and at trial. They prepare and argue key motions and participate fully in decision-making about our cases and our firm. Our associates are given enormous responsibility and share in our financial success.

“‘Lean and mean’ would be an apt description of how Susman Godfrey operates….That devotion to efficiency, plus its investment in talent—Susman Godfrey hires only attorneys who have clerked for federal judges or justices of the US Supreme Court—have resulted in big legal victories.” The National Law Journal

If you are interested in joining our firm of trial lawyers, please email Kimberly Young at kyoung@susmangodfrey.com.



“This is the best substantive experience you can get as a litigator—associates can largely run their own cases. It’s hard to imagine how you’d get more substantive work as an associate in the industry.”SG Associate, Vault Annual Survey

Susman Godfrey associates handle important work on our cases at the onset. New attorneys hone their skills not by “shadowing” partners but by working directly with clients, taking depositions, arguing key motions, and helping try cases.

Our associates regularly appear in court and play key roles in our most significant matters. You can watch some of our associates in action here:

  • Rohit Nath argued an appeal in the Ninth Circuit from the district court’s order denying a motion for a preliminary injunction seeking to enjoin the operation of Los Angeles’ Eviction Moratorium, enacted in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. (start at 32:00)
  • Beatrice Franklin argued at the Minnesota Supreme Court in a dispute that focused on issues of arbitrability regarding lease rights in the Iron Range in the northern part of Minnesota.
  • Glenn Bridgman argued before the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals in a breach of contract action against Genworth Insurance Company, successfully persuading the Circuit to vacate the district court’s injunction based on a 2004 settlement of a prior case (start at 3:15).
  • Krisina Zuniga argued and won motions to modify & quash subpoenas for telephonic records and a motion to compel in a virtual hearing while prosecuting claims of fraud, fraudulent inducement, breach of contract, and trade secret misappropriation in a case claiming over $47 million in damages.

“This is the best place to practice law as a young associate. I am taking depositions, drafting and arguing substantive motions, actively participating in trial strategy decisions, working closely with the client, managing discovery efforts, and developing long term case strategy and themes. As we prepare for trial, I also anticipate having a substantive role at trial and am currently preparing one of our key witnesses, who I will put on.”SG Associate, Vault Annual Survey

Susman Godfrey’s firm structure gives associates an equal vote on accepting new cases, hiring, and other important firm matters. The newest associate has the same vote as the managing partners. The firm meets weekly to discuss issues important to our practice, and all associates are encouraged to attend and participate.

“We have weekly firm meetings, which bring people together. We have periodic firm retreats, which are terrific. There are associate happy hours. Associates have partner and associate mentors, who take them to lunch. And people freely walk into others’ offices to chat. Very pleasant environment.”SG Associate, Vault Annual Survey

Susman Godfrey associates receive compensation that typically beats the market—and often shatters it.

Associate Salary Scale

Susman Godfrey’s associate salary scale applies across all of the firm’s offices, based on an associate’s law school graduation year:

Graduation Year Salary
2020 210,000
2019 220,000
2018 245,000
2017 280,000
2016 310,000
2015 335,000
2014 355,000

Merit Bonuses

Our year-end merit bonuses typically account for a substantial portion of an associate’s annual compensation and often exceed bonuses paid by our competitors—making headline news in leading legal publications and blogs.

Clerkship and Sign-On Bonuses

Susman Godfrey requires that all incoming associates complete a federal judicial clerkship for an Article III district or appellate judge prior to joining the firm.

Associates who join our firm after clerking for one year receive an $80,000 clerkship bonus. Associates who join our firm immediately after clerking for two or more consecutive years at the federal district or appellate level receive an additional $20,000 clerkship bonus, for a total clerkship bonus of $100,000. Associates who clerked for a federal district or appellate court, worked at a different law firm, and then clerked again for another federal district or appellate court will be awarded a bonus for their second clerkship.

United States Supreme Court clerks receive an additional bonus consistent with market levels and credit toward partnership.

In addition to clerkship bonuses, Susman Godfrey pays a $25,000 sign-on bonus and its incoming associates’ bar exam fees (including preparation courses), bar membership fees, and reasonable moving expenses.

Additional Compensation and Benefits

Susman Godfrey provides other significant compensation and benefits to associates. The firm encourages associates to participate in its 401(k) program, matches contributions made by its associates, and makes a substantial annual profit-sharing contribution to every associate’s 401(k) account.

We provide associates with unlimited, paid gender-neutral parental leave and unlimited paid vacation. (Yes, you read that right).

Business development isn’t just for partners. Each associate has his or her own individual business development budget. We encourage our associates to create and maintain professional relationships to help them generate business in the future.

How to Get an Interview

We interview second- and third-year law students on-campus at many of the top law schools. We also welcome resumes from top students at law schools where we do not conduct on-campus interviews as well as resumes from current federal judicial clerks who did not participate in our summer program.

Academic Qualifications

To be competitive for an associate position at Susman Godfrey, candidates must display outstanding academic achievement and show the desire and ability to become a successful trial lawyer. Most of our attorneys were members of the law review or journal at their law schools.

Diversity

Susman Godfrey is committed to diversity among our lawyers and other employees. The firm has created a number of diversity initiatives, including a summer Diversity Fellowship for 1L students and the Susman Godfrey Prize for 1L and 2L students of color. We seek to attract the brightest minds in the country to work here, drawing from a broad range of talent. The firm strongly encourages women and members of minority and other underrepresented groups to apply. Susman Godfrey does not discriminate on the basis of race, creed, religion, color, national origin, ancestry, sex, age, marital status, disability, or sexual orientation.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact Susman Godfrey’s Diversity Committee at diversity@susmangodfrey.com.

Pro Bono

We encourage our attorneys to participate in pro bono opportunities. We have handled substantial pro bono cases, often collaborating with legal services organizations or other non-profits. For example, we recently have worked on cases with the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), Civil Rights Corps, the Texas Fair Defense Project, Texas Civil Rights Project and the Next Generation Action Network Legal Advocacy. An associate’s time spent working on pro bono matters is counted as billable time.

Partnership

All partners at Susman Godfrey are full equity partners. We typically consider associates for partnership after six years with the firm. Associates who clerked for the United States Supreme Court are generally considered for partnership after five years with the firm.

We do not adhere to any arbitrary quota for the number of associates who ultimately will become partners. Each associate is evaluated for partnership based on his or her own performance.

The Susman Godfrey Summer Associate Experience

Susman Godfrey offers a unique, four-week summer program to 2L and pre-clerkship 3L law students. As a summer associate, you will gain meaningful experience doing real legal work on cases for the firm’s clients under the supervision and guidance of Susman Godfrey trial lawyers.

Our summer program is designed to give you a realistic look at what it is like to be an associate at Susman Godfrey. Unlike many other law firms, our summer associates do not receive make-work or “practice assignments.” Instead, you will play an important role as a member of our trial teams as we work up our cases, make arguments to judges, and prepare for trial.

We strive to make sure that our summer associates have the true “trial lawyer” experience. Our summer associates regularly observe Susman Godfrey lawyers in action at trials, depositions, mediations, and client meetings.

But it’s not just work—we want you to get to know our people, too. During your four weeks here, you will have the opportunity to get to know our attorneys through a wide range of social events.

As a summer associate, you will receive a brief yet realistic glimpse at the challenges, excitement, and unparalleled opportunities our associates experience on a daily basis.

2022 1L Summer Diversity Fellowship

As part of our ongoing commitment to diversity, Susman Godfrey seeks the brightest legal minds from all backgrounds who excelled in their first semester of law school and are interested in trial work. We strongly encourage women, racial minorities, LGBTQ students, and anyone from a group that is underrepresented in the legal profession to apply for our 1-L Diversity Fellowship.

Each fellowship recipient will spend two weeks doing substantive legal work alongside our summer associates and attorneys. Fellows will receive $5,000 (less applicable withholding taxes) upon completion of the program.

How to apply

We encourage you to submit an application as early as possible, as we may make offers on a rolling basis. The deadline for our Summer 2022 program is February 11, 2022.

Complete the fellowship application here. Applications must include:

  • a cover letter indicating the Susman Godfrey office in which you want to work;
  • a current resume;
  • a law school transcript containing first semester grades and your undergraduate transcript;
  • the name, phone number, and email address of at least two references—one of which should be a law school professor who can comment on the quality of your work; and
  • a 500-word max statement about yourself—detailing your diverse background, how that has shaped who you are, and what you plan to do to increase diversity in the legal profession.

Please submit your application to Kimberly Young at kyoung@susmangodfrey.com.

We pride ourselves as being one of the best places to work for all legal professionals. Employees stay because the firm promotes from within and values the contribution non-lawyers make to the firm’s mission.

Working at Susman Godfrey

Susman Godfrey welcomes employment opportunity inquiries for its accounting, administrative, paralegal, secretarial, support, and technology positions. We often promote from within the firm but will search externally for the right applicants when the need arises.

Compensation and Benefits

Our employment and benefits packages are competitive by location and include annual reviews; discretionary year-end bonuses; medical, dental, life, and disability insurance; 401K and profit-sharing plans; parking or transportation allowances; paid holidays; paid parental leave; employee leave; and Employee-of-the-Year and Ten-Year Service Awards.

Policies

Susman Godfrey does not discriminate on the basis of race, creed, religion, color, national origin, ancestry, sex, age, marital status, disability, veteran status, or sexual orientation.

Open Positions

Click here for our open legal professional positions.