Sanford Heisler Sharp Reviews | Glassdoor

Sanford Heisler Sharp Reviews

Updated October 9, 2018
17 reviews

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3.9
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David Sanford
11 Ratings

17 Employee Reviews

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  1. "SHS is a great place to work"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Sanford Heisler Sharp full-time

    Pros

    Attorneys and legal assistants are all passionate about the work they do, keeping a humble attitude in their approach to cases

    Cons

    unpredictable, sometimes long, working hours


  2. "Great Opportunity for Recent Graduates"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    Current Employee - Senior Legal Assistant
    Current Employee - Senior Legal Assistant
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Sanford Heisler Sharp full-time

    Pros

    Legal assistants get great opportunities that you probably won't find at any other law firm. You are involved in every step of a case, and are tasked with a great deal of responsibility from the get-go. This includes conducting intakes with potential clients, acting as the primary client liaison, drafting mediation briefs, court filings, and settlement communications, attending mediations and court appearances, reviewing discovery, and filing court documents, to name a few.

    In my experience, I have found great mentors in the attorneys. They are passionate about what they do and are committed to protecting civil rights. Associates and partners alike will take the time out to answer questions, explain the law, and explain their case strategy. They place a lot of trust in their legal assistants, but also guide you and help improve skills like writing. On top of that, the attorneys actually want and listen to your opinion. You can vouch for potential clients and fight for the firm to take a case you feel strongly about. While the attorney/assistant dynamic is clear (for obvious reasons as we don't have a JD), it is one of mentor/mentee and does not feel hierarchical or belittling.

    Legal assistants frequently bond with each other and work together. We will contribute to cases that are not our own to help out an overwhelmed assistant. If you are interested in a specific case or type of case, your fellow legal assistants give you a heads up on incoming cases and will sometimes fight for you to be placed on those cases.

    Overall, you get a true look into the legal field, which is crucial for those considering law school.

    Cons

    - Long hours that can be unpredictable
    - Steep learning curve for legal assistants, but worth it

  3. Helpful (1)

    "Collaborative work culture for self-starters"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Associate
    Current Employee - Associate
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Sanford Heisler Sharp full-time

    Pros

    - non-hierarchical structure; partners do not micro-manage employees
    - very collaborative and collegial work culture
    - non-partner attorneys and legal assistants contribute to strategic case decisions
    - ability to gain substantial case management and client interaction experience
    - great working environment for self-starters

    Cons

    - as is the case with most non-government legal jobs, the hours can be unpredictable
    - although there is some formal training, legal assistants are expected to "learn by doing" and some are better at this than others

    Advice to Management

    Prospective employees should be informed that the firm's business model is not that of the ACLU or other non-profits. We do important civil right work, but many of our clients are high earners.


  4. Helpful (2)

    "Cutting-edge legal work with great team"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    - smart lawyers
    -meaningful work
    -good pay
    -collegial environment

    Lawyers do real litigation on meaningful, exciting employment cases. Teams staffed leanly so young lawyers get lots of good experience.

    Cons

    - some long hours but worth it!


  5. Helpful (1)

    "Great Firm with Many Opportunities for Recent Graduates"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior Legal Assistant
    Current Employee - Senior Legal Assistant
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Sanford Heisler Sharp full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Legal Assistants and new lawyers can gain extensive experience in various practice areas. While the work can be demanding, I have found the work incredibly rewarding. I have learned the ins and outs of the intake process, pre-suit negotiation, and litigation. Legal Assistants can also balance their casework with administrative tasks, which can be immensely helpful to understanding the operations of the firm.

    Attorneys at the firm do a great job of recognizing high-performing employees.

    Cons

    Not all employees share the same passion for the great work the firm does. Fortunately, most of these employees leave.

    Advice to Management

    I hope you continue to give young lawyers and young aspiring lawyers opportunities to make contributions through meaningful work. Many plaintiffs firms would do well to follow your management model.


  6. Helpful (1)

    "great place to work"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Sanford Heisler Sharp full-time

    Pros

    friendly environment, helpful co-workers, and great space to learn about the legal profession overall

    Cons

    a LOT is expected, but you adjust as you go. It takes a while to get your legs, but once you do it'll be very satisfying.


  7. Helpful (1)

    "Good Place To Work"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Attorney
    Current Employee - Attorney
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Sanford Heisler Sharp full-time

    Pros

    - Interesting, meaningful and cutting edge cases that truly make a difference in employment law
    - Smart, talented colleagues.
    - Very cooperative working environment.
    - Non-hierarchical; even the most junior attorneys can work on substantive projects.
    - Firm management is respectful and understanding about family/outside commitments

    Cons

    - Like any law firm, the hours can be long

  8. Helpful (3)

    "Not worth it for Legal Assistants"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Sanford Heisler Sharp full-time

    Pros

    Most if not all attorneys truly care about helping people. Very substantial legal experience for future law students.

    Cons

    Sanford does not actually prioritize diversity or social justice. Firm leadership is mostly white and male. Legal assistants are expected to work long hours and essentially run the firm, performing work worth much more than their salaries. Management, when it exists, pays lip service to systemic workplace issues without making any actual change. These issues are so serious that legal assistants have been driven to tears. Partly due to a well-intentioned fee structure, potential clients who earn less than 6 figures are usually not considered. The irony of all this means college grads hoping to make a tangible difference will likely be disappointed here.


  9. Helpful (3)

    "Mixed bag"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Sanford Heisler Sharp full-time

    Pros

    -Legal assistants and young attorneys given a lot of responsibility - often above their experience level / pay grade. This gives opportunity to learn a lot
    -younger staff generally committed to social justice and will keep you there

    Cons

    - Sanford’s ego dictates firm decisions
    - hierarchical structure/no equality/not really cooperative or team-driven environment
    -management claims to be committed to diversity but check the website
    -attorneys feel there is no hour off-limits to ask for more work (terrible hours, no work/life balance)
    -extremely elitist
    -ironically a very hostile work environment overall. Employees regularly cry at work and complain of poor treatment
    -men receive preferential treatment to women
    -good of the firm often prioritized over client interest

    Advice to Management

    Address systemic workplace concerns that are raised rather than brushing them under the rug. Take cooperation more seriously, and check egos.


  10. Helpful (1)

    "Great firm, great people, great work"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Sanford Heisler Sharp full-time

    Pros

    There are a lot of great people at the firm, and to me that makes it hard to beat. The work environment is friendly and respectful. I enjoy my co-workers and supervisors. We work long hours, but taking on a project with a team of people who you respect and like makes all the difference in the world. I have also never had problems taking vacations or taking time to address family issues.

    Cons

    Have to be willing to put in long hours.


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