Partners William G. Madsen and Jacques J. Parenteau have been named Super Lawyers for Connecticut again for 2009.
Super Lawyers Selection Process
The objective of the Super Lawyers selection process is to create a credible, comprehensive and diverse listing of outstanding attorneys that can be used as a resource to assist attorneys and sophisticated consumers in the search for legal counsel.
In December 2006, Key Professional Media, Inc. hired Global Strategy Group (GSG), one of the nation’s leading market research and consulting firms, to provide an independent assessment of the Super Lawyers selection process. The GSG report concluded that the process is scientific and objective and went on to state:
“the broad range of sources used to obtain a large and representative nominee pool, the comprehensive data search on each candidate, the protocols used to evaluate nominees, the expert panel system, and the meticulous checks and balances built into the process … leave little to chance or idiosyncratic influence.”
No other legal publisher goes through the unique multi-step process that Super Lawyers employs to find evidence of peer recognition and professional achievement.
Step One: Creation of the Candidate Pool
Statewide survey of lawyers
* Each year, we conduct a statewide survey of lawyers (except in California and Washington, D.C., where we survey by region). Lawyers eligible to participate include those who have been in practice for at least five years.
* This year, we will invite over 800,000 lawyers nationwide to participate in our survey.
* We ask the lawyers to nominate the best attorneys they’ve personally observed in action.
* Nominees need not be in private practice. Lawyers may nominate legal aid attorneys, prosecutors and in-house counsels.
* Lawyers may nominate attorneys in their own firm, but these nominations count only if each in-firm nomination is matched by at least one out-firm nomination.
* Each nomination carries a point value. An out-firm vote has substantially greater point value than an in-firm vote.
* Lawyers cannot vote for themselves.
* With our database, we are able to keep track of who votes for whom. This helps us detect any excessive “back-scratch” voting (lawyers voting for each other) and “block voting” (where members of the same law firm all cast identical ballots).
“Star Search” process
We add additional names to the candidate pool through our “Star Search” process.
Our attorney-led research staff searches for outstanding lawyers by:
* Reviewing national and local periodicals as well as legal trade journals
* Searching numerous databases and online sources
* Conducting in-person and telephonic meetings with law firms
Some of the attorneys found through Star Search may have been missed in the online balloting process. Examples of lawyers often overlooked in balloting:
* Lawyers with national litigation practices who rarely appear in the courts of their home jurisdiction
* Lawyers in smaller firms, or from smaller communities
* Lawyers practicing in less visible or highly specialized practice areas
Step Two: Evaluation of Lawyers in Candidate Pool
Our research department examines the background and experience of each candidate searching for evidence of peer recognition and professional achievement.
Factors considered in evaluating candidates:
* Verdicts and settlements
* Representative clients
* Honors and awards
* Special licenses and certifications
* Position within law firm
* Bar and or other professional activity
* Pro bono and community service
* Scholarly lectures and writings
* Education and employment background
* Other outstanding achievement
Step Three: Peer Evaluation by Practice Area
* Candidates are grouped according to primary area of practice.
* Those with high point totals from the balloting and qualitative evaluation steps are asked to be on a blue ribbon panel for their practice area.
* Panelists review and score a list of candidates from their practice area.
* Panelists may add names to the list. These are passed along to research for evaluation.
Final candidates are segmented according to firm size (firm size categories vary from jurisdiction to jurisdiction). Those with the highest point totals from each category are selected. Only 5 percent of the total lawyers in the state are selected for inclusion in Super Lawyers.
* The research staff checks each candidate’s standing with the local licensing authority.
* Each candidate is asked to aver that they have never been subject to disciplinary or criminal proceedings.
* Final Internet searches are performed on each candidate to ensure there are no outstanding matters that would reflect adversely on the lawyer.
* We contact each lawyer to ensure accuracy of all published information.