California is home to the world's second largest oil company, Chevron and other Fortune 500 energy companies including Occidental Petroleum, Sempra Energy and Calpine.
Employee benefits remains one of the busiest areas of law in California: regular changes to already complex rules contribute to demand for the leading external counsel.
This chapter identifies 18 leading tax lawyers at 13 firms in California.
Despite the tough economic environment, which has resulted in a string of law firm mergers and department lateral hires, California trademarks firms are performing well. Our interviewees put this down to the continuing buoyancy of the IP market, especially in the areas of internet and medical trademarks work. An increase in activity is also noted in the IP fraud area - lawyers are increasingly busy working out strategies to avoid litigation in this area, according to sources. Forty-nine lawyers appear in this chapter, making it one of the largest in the edition - another indication of the continuing demand for IP counsel.
Fifty-five leading real estate attorneys were chosen for this chapter. They have a wide range of specialisms from real estate funding to land use and sales. Although in the past year there has been a reported fall in the price of housing and commercial property markets in California, the talent of these lawyers has enabled them to maintain strong real estate practices.
The energy sector remains robust, with continued demand for energy driving high levels of investment internationally.
The presence of 31 lawyers from 17 firms bears out the vibrancy of California's product liability defendants' bar, which is at the forefront of legal developments in the US.
Corporate governance remains high on the agenda in boardrooms across America, its importance raised by the straitened economic circumstances.
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Nominees have been selected based upon comprehensive, independent survey work with both general counsel and private practice lawyers worldwide. Only specialists who have met independent international research criteria are listed.