Law has always been a lucrative career option for young people who want to create a niche for themselves. It’s a rewarding and respected profession. Demand for specialist lawyers and law firms in India has increased considerably in the last decade or so. Enforcement of the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code has generated a huge amount of work in the mergers and acquisitions domain. Plus, the challenges and opportunities that have come up because of the ever-increasing complexities in the legal and regulatory framework have triggered a huge demand for skilled legal professionals. In tune with this trend, there has been a huge spike in the number of students vying for seats in various law colleges across the country. With law colleges churning out fresh law graduates by thousands every year the competition among lawyers and law firms has become very tough putting huge downward pressure on fees charged by these firms.
In this backdrop, we have tried to list down the top law firms in the country on the basis of their presence across the country, the quantity, and quality of work they handle, the number of lawyers in their roles.
Lately, the firm has emphatically cemented its place at the top of the legal business. It’s no mean feat, considering that it emerged from the ashes of Amarchand Mangaldas as recently as May 2015 with 300 lawyers on board. It has now expanded to 550 lawyers with 111 partners. Though quite a remarkable feat to be counted at the top, it’s not really surprising. Given its pedigree and the credentials of the founders, Shardul and Pallavi Shroff, who are experts in litigation, arbitration, and in matters of corporate law, this stature and recognition were bound to happen.
One of the largest law firms in the country, Shardul Amarchand Mangaldas & Co. (SAM) has seven offices across India. The firm has a bevy of national and international clients of repute. It is known for its ability to hire and nurture young talents and suitably reward the performers and achievers with promotions and bonuses.
Another firm counted among the top is ABZ & Partners. It has 400 plus attorneys in its ranks and seven offices in different parts of the country. Known for its knowledge and experience in diverse practice areas, such as banking and finance, mergers and acquisitions, intellectual property, the firm owes its pre-eminence to the exceptional talent and abilities of its founding members Zia Mody, Bahram Vakil, and Ajay Bahl. ABZ excels in business law, particularly corporate and commercial practice, and has successfully handled some of the most complex and challenging transaction deals, representing clients, such as Tata Steel, IDFC Bank, and Walt Disney, among others.
With more than 650 lawyers in its rank, it is the largest law firm in the country. Like SAM, it was formed when the original Amarchand Mangaldas was split into two. The firm has six offices across the country and is counted as one of the best law firms in India. The firm boasts of prominent national and international clients from the corporate world and has represented clients, such as Tata Sons, Mumbai International Airport, International Finance Corporation, Hindustan Aeronautics, and Flipkart, to name a few. The firm has extensive experience in the transaction field and routinely advises top corporate clients on matters related to banking and finance, public issues of shares, mergers, and acquisitions, and other aspects of business law.
Founded in 1991 and headquartered at Gurugram, J Sagar Associates is one of the top law firms in the country. With eighty-six partners and more than 300 advocates, it has seven offices spread across the country. The firm has an impressive list of clients, both local and international. It works in diverse practice areas and is reputed for consistently delivering quality services within the agreed timelines. Some of its major clients include Teleperformance Group, LAT Polish Airlines, Aircel, et al. The firm has recently made several high-profile lateral hires to strengthen its team.
One of the oldest in India with more than 100 years of presence, Khaitan & Co was founded in the year 1911 by Late Debi Prasad Khaitan, and as of now, has 115 partners and close to 600 lawyers in its ranks. Its practice areas include all the disciplines of business & finance and labor & employment laws, and works in various sectors including hospitality, infrastructure, environment, etc. Major clients represented in the past include Flipkart, RP Sanjiv Goenka Group, India Glycols, and Reliance Group companies.
Mentioned above are the top five law firms in India. However, there are many other big law firms that have the credentials to be counted among the top five. As there is no hard and fast rule for selection, this list can be challenged by other deserving candidates.
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