The San Francisco legal market is a healthy (albeit competitive) one. Sometimes it seems as though everyone wants to move here! We see more laterals relocate to the San Francisco Bay Area than to any other market in the country. At any given time of the year, roughly 40% of our candidates are moving here from somewhere else (usually DC, New York, or Chicago). Corporate, intellectual property, and labor & employment hiring are constants here and that remains true currently. 2016 has been a good year for technology transactions hiring as well as transactional tax. Litigation vacancies are typically concentrated in business & complex commercial litigation and recently, in securities litigation.
There is no two ways about it: San Francisco is the destination of choice these days for tourists, techies, financiers, foodies, hipsters, hedonists and anyone who has been fortunate enough to be captured by its spell, including hundreds of lateral law firm associates. I moved here “just to give it a try.” That was five years ago and I’m not going anywhere. You’ve been warned.
San Francisco’s iconography is ingrained in the American psyche: the Golden Gate Bridge, the cable cars, Chinatown, the Victorian architecture, the fog (affectionately known as “Carl” by locals) and its staggering hills. All of these things capture the imagination of tourists and locals alike. But San Francisco’s food and tech scenes are driving people here by the thousands. Food is to San Francisco what politics is to DC. With the most restaurants and farmers markets per capita in North America supplying organic food, San Francisco sets the gold standard for dining. This is America’s bread basket, after all. And whether you’re dining out or eating in, you’d be hard pressed to find a bad meal. The tech industry is the juggernaut of the local economy at the moment, creating previously unseen levels of wealthin the city (and contributing directly to astronomical rents and an insanely competitive housing market). With tech employers now dually established in the city and Silicon Valley, technology is also a feeder for the majority of the other major local industries, including law, finance, medicine, and pharmaceuticals.