Legal Work at WilmerHale DC

Legal Work at WilmerHale DC


Welcome to my blog! Here I will be posting about my various adventures as a summer associate in WilmerHale's DC office. By way of an introduction, my name is Komal Patel, and I'm a rising 3L at Columbia Law School.

When I signed my offer letter and agreed to join WilmerHale as a 2017 summer associate back in September, I must confess that I didn't have the clearest conception of what sorts of work assignments I would be involved in. Like many of my fellow law students, I'm a first generation professional who only had a general notion that my work at WilmerHale would likely involve research and memo writing. And though I had finished two years of law school by the time I arrived at the firm for the summer, the day-to-day activities of a working attorney were still somewhat of a mystery to me.

Needless to say, I wasn't really sure what to expect when I met with my Work Assignment Coordinator (WAC) Leah Schloss on my third day at the firm to receive my first assignments. Assigning projects at WilmerHale's DC office for the summer is done through WACs who take great care in learning about each summer associate's interests so that they can give assignments that will be productive and fun.

Just two weeks in, I've had the opportunity to work on a variety of incredibly substantive matters. From writing up shorter and more focused research memos in preparation for meetings with government investigators, to reviewing discovery materials like depositions and drafting supplemental motions for ongoing litigation, to preparing for a trial coming up in a matter of weeks, I've felt that I have been able to contribute meaningfully to the client matters at WilmerHale.

Of course, engaging work comes with its challenges. Namely, many of the legal issues that we have researched haven't come with easy answers. But this aspect of the work only makes it more compelling. Because clients turn to WilmerHale when they have novel and particularly difficult legal problems, members of the firm get to grapple with truly cutting edge issues in a way that is both trying and rewarding.

One of my favorite aspects of the summer so far has definitely been the types of matters that I've had the chance to work on. As someone whose favorite law school class was constitutional law, I was thrilled to be able to work on both billable and pro bono litigation matters that have involved constitutional law issues. In addition to being able to help with cases that I know I'd be interested in, I've been assigned to cases involving statutes that I had never heard of but ended up finding extremely fascinating.

The firm goes to great lengths to ensure that the summer associates really do get a true sense of what it's like to be an attorney here, and the caliber of the firm means that interesting, challenging and fun matters are always walking through the door. I couldn't be happier with the work that I've had the opportunity to do so far at WilmerHale, and I cannot wait to see what new cases are in store for me throughout the rest of the summer.