Schnader Harrison Segal & Lewis, a nearly 90-year-old law firm with roots in Philadelphia, is being dissolved.
Keith Whitson, a Pittsburgh-based partner who serves as general counsel for the law firm, said the firm is winding down operations with the help of outside counsel, Leslie Corwin of Duane Morris, who specializes in dissolving law firms and other businesses.
Many of Schneider’s 91 attorneys have already found new law firms, Whitson said, and the firm’s goal is to help all attorneys and employees find new jobs.
“We are all very sad that we have come to this point,” Whitson said. “We want to make sure that we maintain our relationships with our clients, protect our employees and attorneys, and preserve the legacy that we have built over nearly 90 years.”
Whitson declined to discuss the cause of the company’s difficulties, but said: “It became clear last week that this was the path we had to take.”
Whitson said all attorneys and employees will remain with Schneider until the resolution process is complete. He declined to discuss the closing timeline or which firms hire Schneider attorneys.
“Although our firm will eventually cease to exist, the role our talented lawyers played in such monumental developments as the Civil Rights Movement, the creation of the State of Israel, and the creation of the Uniform Commercial Code and the Uniform Probate Law will have a lasting impact,” Whitson added. on our society.”
The company was founded in 1934 as Schnader & Lewis.
Former Pennsylvania Attorney General William Schneider had just run unsuccessfully for governor and wanted to return to practicing law. He wanted to join a firm with an apprentice, Bernard Segal, but Segal was Jewish, and no other firm in Philadelphia was hiring a Jewish lawyer at the time. So Schneider formed a new firm with law school classmate Francis Lewis, and brought with him Segal, who later became a specific partner.
The firm became known for its judicial practices and has grown to a list of about 200 attorneys. They’ve worked as attorneys on some high-profile cases in Pennsylvania, including three at once in 2016, when The company simultaneously represented former U.S. Representative Chaka Fattah, former Pennsylvania State President Graham Spanier, and comedian Bill Cosby..
Schneider had more than 300 attorneys in the early 2000s After merging with two small companies in Philadelphia Then Boston, but the Boston merger was later undone, and the firm eventually settled down again to include about 200 attorneys.
This number has started to decrease in recent years. The number of attorneys at Schneider dropped to 122 in June 2022, and then to 91 now, according to archived copies of the company’s website.
However, in December 2022, the company was making a “commitment to future growth” in announcing the additions of Whitson of Pittsburgh, Terry Loscalzo of Philadelphia, and Rich Barkasi of Wilmington, Delaware, to the company’s management team. In addition to these locations, the firm also has offices in Cherry Hill, New York and San Francisco, as well as a location in Jakarta, through an association with the law firm Yang & Co.
Just a few months ago, high-profile litigators Bruce Mehnstein and Samuel Silver, who were leaders within the firm, left Schneider. at that time, According to the legal intelligence Schneider was in talks about a possible merger.