Norton Rose Fulbright eyes transatlantic tie-up with Chadbourne & Parke

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International giant understood to be in advanced talks with US firm


Reports suggest Norton Rose Fulbright is close to putting pen to paper on a deal that will see it join forces with US law firm Chadbourne & Parke.

Legal Cheek understands that discussions are in their “advanced stages”, with partners on both sides keen to push the merger through as soon as possible.

Norton Rose Fulbright is the larger of the two outfits. According to Legal Cheek’s Most List the international giant — which offers around 50 training contracts annually — has over 3,000 lawyers spread across 54 locations. Boasting a global revenue of £1.16 billion, Norton Rose Fulbright scored well in our Trainee and Junior Lawyer Survey, bagging A*s for office environment and international secondment opportunities.

Across the Atlantic, New York-headquartered Chadbourne & Parke has just 400 lawyers across 12 offices. Posting a 2016 global revenue of £163 million, the firm — which is perhaps best known for its project finance work — already has a small City outpost.

Confirming that talks between the two firms are ongoing, a spokesperson for Norton Rose Fulbright said:

We believe that the combination would provide an even stronger global platform for our clients, who would also benefit from our compatibility in both practice and industry focus. We will make no further comment on this matter until discussions with our partnership have concluded.

Earlier this week the transatlantic tie-up between Eversheds and Sutherland Asbill & Brennan went live. Creating a new firm called Eversheds Sutherland, the combination — which was confirmed back in December following a successful partner vote — has 2,300 lawyers across 61 offices in 29 countries.

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Irwin Mitchell Trainee/Slave

save me.


Irwin Mitchell Equity Partner



KWM future trainee

Rescue me!



Chadbourne is such a turd with no value. Genuinely can’t see why are NRF wasting their time.



They’ve always had a strong presence in a) energy b) insurance c) emerging markets, which is a pretty good match for NRF and appears to make sense.



Agreed. The firm is essentially a big-ish NYC office with 15 associated satellites making pennies.



That’s all they really want though.


Wannabe trainee

I applied for a TC with Chadbourne & Parke. Any idea on current levels of trainee pay / NQ pay? Is it a top US firm with 90k+ at NQ or more like a Reed Smith?

They’re unfortunately completely silent on these details…



They used to pay high £70ks about 5 years ago, which was decent at the time (Magic Circle was low £60ks) and in-line with what Shearmans were paying and above what W&C were paying. Not sure now though.



Where did they get the cash for that? They’re basically unknown in London.


Ex Chad

2012 NQ salary was 78k


Biq Diq

In a distant age, all major law firms will merge and create one super-law firm, which will represent humanity in court against extra terrestrials living on Mars and neighbouring planets.


Harrison Wells

To me, they’ve been merged for centuries.


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