TrueLaw Litigation Index – 2021 Law Firm Ranking

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TrueLaw Litigation Index – 2021 Law Firm Ranking

UniCourt is a leader in making court data more accessible and useful with our Legal Data as a Service (LDaaS). We provide real-time access to court data through our APIs and online app for business development and intelligence, litigation analytics, litigation tracking, case research, investigations, background checks, due diligence, compliance, underwriting, machine learning models, and process automation. 

Starting in 2020, we released the first annual TrueLaw Litigation Index – 2019 Law Firm Ranking with the purpose of establishing an objective law firm rankings report based solely on litigation data. We’re excited to share that you can download the TrueLaw Litigation Index ranking for 2019, 2020, and now 2021 with the link below:

Download the TrueLaw Litigation Index – 2021 Law Firm Ranking 

The TrueLaw Litigation Index 2021 Law Firm Ranking showcases the top 200 law firms for civil litigation across all federal U.S. District Courts. To make this report possible, UniCourt downloads every new civil case that is publicly available in PACER for all U.S. District Courts, and our artificial intelligence and automation technologies organize, clean, and structure that data to identify the real-world law firms, attorneys, parties, and judges involved in litigation.    

The TrueLaw Litigation Index is solely focused on ranking private practice law firms, and does not include any state or federal agencies, U.S. Attorneys’ Offices, state Attorneys General, or nonprofits, such as legal aid organizations and other non-law firm entities. 

In this blog, we’ll highlight which law firms made the TrueLaw Litigation Index top ten list, and take a look at who saw the biggest gains and losses in litigation volumes from 2020 to 2021.  We’ll also introduce a handful of notable newcomers to the top 200 list, share which BigLaw firms dropped off the list altogether, and reveal how you can get the law firm intelligence you need with our Legal Data APIs.

The Top Ten: A Who’s Who in Litigation

This year’s top ten of the TrueLaw Litigation Index contains a diverse spectrum of law firms, from the highest grossing law firm in the world in Kirkland & Ellis, with over $6 billion in gross revenues, contrasted with Cade R. Cole, a solo-practitioner, and Juneau David, a four-man operation, both of whom did not even make the top 200 list for 2019 or 2020. 

Here are the top ten firms: 

  1. Vorys, Sater, Seymour and Pease LLP
  2. Juneau David, APLC
  3. Cade R. Cole, Attorney-at-Law
  4. Faegre Drinker Biddle & Reath LLP
  5. Jones Day
  6. Kirkland & Ellis LLP
  7. Dechert LLP
  8. Ogletree, Deakins, Nash, Smoak & Stewart, P.C.
  9. Littler Mendelson P.C.
  10. Morgan & Morgan, P.A.

Notably, five of the firms from the top ten list of the 2020 Law Firm Ranking also made it into this year’s top ten: 

  • Vorys, Sater, Seymour and Pease LLP
  • Faegre Drinker Biddle & Reath LLP
  • Ogletree, Deakins, Nash, Smoak & Stewart, P.C.
  • Littler Mendelson P.C.
  • Morgan & Morgan, P.A.

What’s even more impressive is that Vorys and Faegre Drinker (pre-merger in 2019 as Faegre Baker and Drinker Biddle) have made it into the top ten for all three years. We look forward to seeing whether both firms can make into the top ten for a fourth year in a row!

The Biggest Gains and Losses in Law Firm Rankings

In contrast to the 2020 Law Firm Ranking, the biggest gains by far this year, go to Eckland & Blando, a high-stakes contract disputes law firm based out of the Twin Cities. Jumping from 176th to 31st place, this ten attorney firm made huge gains in the rankings, all while “fighting for the little guy.”

  • Eckland & Blando +145
  • The Atkin Firm, LLC +123
  • Environmental Litigation Group P.C. +104
  • Kirkland & Ellis LLP +103
  • Spitz, The Employee’s Law Firm +91
  • D. Scott Carruthers, APLC +67
  • Husch Blackwell LLP +62
  • Ulmer & Berne LLP +57
  • Trammell PC +56
  • Kaufman Dolowich & Voluck, LLP +54

The largest loss in position from the 2020 to 2021 rankings goes to McCarter & English. In a significant drop from 58th place in 2020 all the way down to ranking 180th, McCarter & English is followed closely behind two other BigLaw firms that experienced a triple digit drop: Arnold & Porter and Steptoe & Johnson.

  • McCarter & English, LLP -122 
  • Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer LLP -111
  • Steptoe & Johnson LLP -110
  • Parmele Law Firm, P.C. -99
  • Litchfield Cavo LLP -83 
  • Ashcraft & Gerel LLP -83
  • K&L Gates LLP -77 
  • Singleton Schreiber, LLP -73
  • Saul Ewing Arnstein & Lehr LLP -71
  • Weitz & Luxenberg P.C. -68

Notable Newcomers and Drop Offs of the TrueLaw Litigation Index

There was a great deal of disruption from the 2020 ranking to the 2021 ranking, with 52 firms making the TrueLaw Litigation Index for the first time this year. However, this rate of change is still outpaced by the 2020 ranking, where we saw 70 newcomers jump onto the leaderboards. This year, we also tracked that 11 firms who fell off the list from 2019 to 2020 have made it back into the 2021 ranking this year.

What is most surprising about this year’s rankings are the household BigLaw names like Skadden, Quinn Emanuel, Winston, and Mayer Brown, who all completely dropped from the top 200 list. 

Here are some of the notable newcomers:

  • Freeman Mathis & Gary, LLP (185)
  • Clyde & Co LLP (186)
  • Dorsey & Whitney LLP (197)

BigLaw that Dropped Off Entirely

  1. Williams & Connolly LLP
  2. Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan, LLP
  3. Robinson & Cole LLP
  4. Winston & Strawn LLP
  5. Shutts & Bowen LLP
  6. Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP
  7. Carlton Fields, P.A.
  8. Buchanan Ingersoll & Rooney PC
  9. Mayer Brown LLP
  10. Quarles & Brady LLP

Legal Data APIs for Law Firm Intelligence

UniCourt’s Legal Data as a Service (LDaaS) via our Legal Data APIs unlocks the law firm intelligence you need to move forward with confidence. 

While the TrueLaw Litigation Index tells you who’s who in federal court, our APIs give you the full picture with structured, classified, and normalized data to tell the whole story of how a law firm is really performing year over year, who their top clients are, who their most profitable rainmakers are, if their market share is expanding or contracting, and if their litigation trends spell out a banner year or choppy waters ahead. 

You can easily aggregate the law firm intelligence you need on any firm in our massive state and federal litigation database with our Law Firm Analytics API, and slice the data you want by a range of factors to bring the specific picture you need of a law firm’s litigation portfolio into focus. But don’t stop there. 

Our APIs give you bulk access to data and analytics on all of the attorneys, parties, and judges connected to a law firm, so you can map out their relationships and gather the underlying intelligence for your own business development, competitive intelligence, opposition research, and to build winning litigation strategies. 

Unlike many traditional legal research providers, like LexisNexis and Westlaw, UniCourt’s LDaaS business model is based on providing you with unimpeded access to the legal data you need to build the analytics, reports, and dashboards you want, without signing away your soul or emptying out your bank account in the process. We strongly believe in the importance of developing a legal data ecosystem where our clients can get the data they need to bring forward the future innovative products and services that will catapult the legal industry forward.

To learn more about LDaaS and get access to our APIs, contact us at

Download the TrueLaw Litigation Index – 2021 Law Firm Ranking