The best dispute lawyers often have something of the diva or rockstar about them – argumentative, uncompromising and brash. Michael Davison, head of Hogan Lovells’ litigation, arbitration and employment group, describes Neal Katyal, who runs the firm’s Washington DC disputes team, as such a figure. It is easy to see why: at the age of 48, Katyal had argued more Supreme Court cases than anyone else in US history and appeared as himself in Netflix’s political drama House of Cards.
London, of course, has no shortage of big characters in litigation, even if the clubby world of hard-living, hard-working boys is giving way to a more diverse crowd. To assess the prospects for the disputes market, Legal Business decided to focus on a dozen of the largest players in the City, spanning traditional leaders, the largest specialist firms and a handful of the most expansive US outfits.