June 17, 2022

Introduction and summary

       Welcome and thank you for visiting. I am an attorney who used to work at O'Melveny & Myers. I was so surprised by what I saw there that I took on the role of amateur journalist and started this website. It's one of those acts that takes little time, but might do some good by shining a light. Below is a summary, which I hope you find informative.

       1. According to the New York Times, an O'Melveny attorney used violent imagery to threaten a sexual abuse victim into silence, as her assailant watched. This led to an additional decade of sexual abuse by the assailant, and the attorney became a go-to hire for rich men accused of sexual assault (links one and two.) Later, Mother Jones revealed that this same attorney chose not to stop a client's racist comments about a judge. The attorney is
chair of O'Melveny's Trial Practice Committee and vice chair of the firm.

       2. The firm has a history of conducting reportedly sham "independent investigations," in exchange for money. For example, see this story in Corporate Counsel accusing O'Melveny partner Adam Karr of conducting a sham investigation of sexual abuse at Lions Gate. A saint of a woman returned over a million dollars to break her confidentiality agreement and reveal that information. Or see these stories about a woman who learned that her alleged sexual assaulter's personal lawyer (O'Melveny) had been hired to "independently investigate" whether he assaulted her (links one and two.) Or see this story about an O'Melveny alumnus who was arrested by the FBI, as he negotiated his fee for an independent investigation.

       3. One of O'Melveny's practice group leaders reportedly lied to a federal court. Once caught in that lie by the discovery of documents, he gave a radio interview criticizing the protections of the Geneva Convention.

       4. The firm has a money-obsessed culture, which they called "eat what you kill." For example, query whether they needlessly dragged out an alleged rape victim's misery to maximize partner profits, and then bragged about the money they made off of her in a press release. Or query whether they were the only defense firm to drag out an opioid crisis case, damaging their client's reputation and likely resulting in thousands of avoidable deaths, to maximize partner profits (links one, two, three and four). For a numerical example of how one O'Melveny group allocated profits among its partners, see this post.

       5. Naturally, O'Melveny's partners are exceedingly cheap. For example, they upset law students by cutting summer associate pay by about $10,000, and replacing it with a $10,000 loan from the partners. That financial maneuver boosted partner profits by about 0.24%.

       6. Further on the topic of money, an O'Melveny attorney once told me that they can "monetize" government positions. Consistent with this view, O'Melveny tried to change case law to make it harder to prosecute public officials who engage in quid pro quo corruption. For an example of an O'Melveny attorney who used a government position for his own personal purposes, see these two posts (links one and two). It doesn't always work out though; one of O'Melveny's friends got arrested for trying to do this.

       7. O'Melveny contrives claims to intimidate people. For example, after I published this website, they accused me of the federal crime of stealing confidential information – without any digital evidence that I even accessed the data they accused me of taking. When they realized that their baseless accusation wasn't going to scare me, they threatened me with a defamation lawsuit. But when I asked them to identify a specific defamatory statement so that I could retract it, they refused to do so.

       8. O'Melveny was at the forefront of the document used to silence victims -- the mandatory arbitration and nondisclosure agreement. Although three federal courts told O'Melveny that its document was "unconscionable" (cases one, two and three) -- O’Melveny continued to force its employees to sign it until 2018, when law students pressured law firms to abandon this practice.

       9. The firm retaliates against employees who complain about problematic practices. They even reportedly launched a "witch hunt" to find an employee who complained anonymously.

       10. The inspector general chided an O'Melveny alumnus for threatening scientists in a way that had "life and death consequences."

       11. Per ABC News's Sacramento affiliate, O'Melveny's lacking advice embarrassed the governor's office and cost California wildfire victims billions of dollars.

       12. O'Melveny claims to support diversity by following the Mansfield Rule, but their track record suggests otherwise.

       13. The firm consistently grades itself at the top-end, usually the top three, in Vault's self-graded rankings. Eventually, this gamesmanship let to complaints from law students who felt misled, and mimicry by another firm which, in only one year, rose from a low position in the rankings to the number one spot in all of them.

       14. O'Melveny tries to manipulate journalists into advertising for the firm. Here is their manager of public relations explaining how to do this on the show, "Law firm marketing catalyst." Some of the resulting articles are provably false.

       15. The firm was even lambasted in the press for trying to remove truthful information from Wikipedia, of all things.

       If you think this website is unusual, please note that I'm not the first person to do this. The late Judge Stephen Reinhardt expressed his public disgust with things he saw at O'Melveny back in the 1980s. A legal recruiter, whose livelihood depends on ingratiating himself to law firms, publicly shared a shocking story from O'Melveny. An O'Melveny attorney used twitter to talk about everything they lost while working there. And there's more that I haven't said, because I do not have hard evidence and don't want to be caught in a "he said, she said" defamation case (see #7 above), or because the person who shared the information asked me not to post it here. I'm largely restricted to writing about things that made it into the news, which may be the tip of the iceberg.

       I hope this information helps you. Please contact me at tips@omelvenymyersethics.org if you have something to add (and please feel free to use anonymous encrypted email providers, like proton mail.) I can also call you if you would prefer to talk via phone
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Brad Butwin, Dan Petrocelli, Brian Boyle, Adam Karr, omm, omelveny, Brandon Jacobsen