CHARLESTON – Four law firms based in West Virginia are listed on the National Law Journal's (NLJ) 500 edition for 2018, which lists the nation's largest law firms by the number of full-time attorneys.
Bowles Rice, Steptoe & Johnson, Jackson Kelly and Spilman Thomas & Battle all made the NLJ 500.
"Bowles Rice is proud to be included on the National Law Journal’s annual NLJ 500 list,” Tom Heywood, managing partner of Bowles Rice, said in an interview with The West Virginia Record. “We have added a lot of new talent this past year to better serve our clients across the region and nation."
The NLJ ranked Bowles Rice at No. 345.
Heywood said the firm has outgrown its current Morgantown office and will open a new, larger office there in September.
"The success of our clients and the dramatic growth in the markets we serve are the foundation for the continued growth we anticipate in the years to come," Heywood said.
Heywood said the NLJ began publishing its annual survey of the nation's largest law firms 40 years ago, with rankings determined by the number of lawyers.
"Bowles Rice first made the list in 2013 and has been consistently ranked each year since," Heywood said.
Bowles Rice was one of 20 law firms across the country named to the NLJ Midsize Hot List in 2014. The Midsize Hot List recognizes firms that are succeeding at a time when many of their bigger competitors are struggling amid high headcounts and overhead.
"This type of national recognition confirms our reputation as a respected, regional law firm offering outstanding quality and value to our clients," Heywood said.
Bowles Rice will celebrate its 100th anniversary in 2020 and, over the last century, the firm has experienced significant growth in response to its clients' needs and in order to provide them with the best possible service.
"That also has included expanding our areas of practice and our office locations," Heywood said. "For example, we added our first Pennsylvania office in 2012 and we will be moving to a new location at University Town Centre in Morgantown in September."
Heywood said while the NLJ 500 recognizes the largest law firms in the nation, Bowles Rice is proud to also have been recognized for the depth and breadth of its experience, client satisfaction and the quality of work by several other organizations and publications.
Heywood said U.S. News & World Report's Best Law Firms consistently ranks Bowles Rice in its top tier of West Virginia law firms in more than 40 different practice areas, based on their experience and client feedback.
"Benchmark Litigation, a global organization that focuses exclusively on litigation practices in the United States, Canada and Mexico, recognized Bowles Rice as its West Virginia Firm of the year in both 2017 and 2018," Heywood said. "And Chambers and Partners, a peer-review organization based in the United Kingdom, has recognized Bowles Rice as 'Top Ranked' in West Virginia in each of the five areas of law evaluated by its researchers for its annual publication, 'Chambers USA: America's Leading Lawyers for Business.' Its 2018 publication, Chambers USA also recognized 18 Bowles Rice attorneys for their work."