For Law Firms Seeking to Add Lateral Difference-Makers

We have successfully worked in virtually every major practice area and placed partners in 17 major cities around the globe

For Partners Interested in Making a Lateral Move

We tailor options to meet your very specific needs and wants.

We then work hand-in-hand with you from setting up first interviews to day one at your new law firm.

For Law Firms Seeking to Add Lateral Difference-Makers

What is your number one global lateral priority?

Please check one practice area and check the cities in which you would consider adding that practice.

For Partners Interested in Making a Lateral Move

Is moving your practice the right idea?

NLS has developed a proprietary questionnaire to help you make a more informed decision. It is based on experience gained from having placed 100+ partners over the 30 years combined experience of the principals of NLS.

Click here to download the questionnaire


Please fill out the questionnaire at your convenience.

At the very bottom of the questionnaire provide us with an e-mail address where we can reach you.  Anything we receive is held in strict confidence. However, if you don’t wish to identify yourself at this stage you may simply provide an e-mail address without your name or firm name.

We will get back to you with commentary within 48 hours.

About Us

N Legal Search was launched with a simple goal: to provide both partner candidates of distinction and client law firms an unrivaled level of service, marketplace experience and, most importantly performance.

It’s all about delivering results.

The company was founded by Neil Handwerker who has worked placing partners and practice groups in law firms for 16 years.

Before starting N Legal Search, Neil was the co-founder of Handwerker Hren Legal Search and, prior, the head of the Legal Division at Lucas Group, one of the largest, privately-held search firms where he was responsible for 50 legal recruiters around the world.

N Legal Search does only one thing.  We place law firm partners and practice groups. All associate and in-house searches are referred out to trusted colleagues specializing in these markets.

We are gratified that partner candidates and law firm clients have embraced NLS.  The company is fortunate to have forged deep relationships which have led to success in multiple practice areas around the world.  Put another way, being able to understand many practice areas and work in different parts of the world has given us the flexibility to be successful.

Neil Handwerker


Neil Handwerker, Esq. is the founder of N Legal Search LLC. The focus of his practice is partner and practice group placements in law firms. He has 16 years of experience. Neil, an attorney, started his career as a Staff Recruiter in the Legal Division of a global executive search firm. After making several noteworthy partner placements during his first 18 months as a legal recruiter, Neil was asked to manage the NY office of the Legal Division. After leading his office to record profits in each year of his tenure, he was then promoted to General Manager of the Legal Division responsible for 50 legal recruiters around the world. His next venture was the boutique Handwerker Hren Legal Search which he co-founded.

N Legal Search is Neil’s 4th start-up company. Earlier in his career, he was co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of Fulcrum Information Services, Inc. a venture capital-backed provider of management education to law firms, law departments, accounting firms and M&A/corporate development professionals. Neil and his partners sold the company to Sylvan Learning Systems in 2001.

Prior to Fulcrum, Neil was co-founder and President of Business Development Associates, Inc. a marketing and consulting firm. His fast start in building the company was profiled in a front page article in the Marketplace section of The Wall Street Journal.

Neil began his career at Executive Enterprises, Inc. rising to Senior Vice President, Conferences and Publishing.

He has an undergraduate degree with honors from Union College and a JD with honors from Fordham Law School. Neil has been a frequent lecturer on client development for lawyers including appearances at several annual ABA conventions. He has written for publications including: The American Lawyer, The National Law Journal, Marketing for Lawyers, Spy, Cosmopolitan and National Lampoon.

Our Difference

We say ‘No’ as often as we say ‘Yes’

We will not accept a search assignment unless we can commit the right amount of time and resources to be successful. Similarly, we will turn down any retainer where we believe a prospective client has unrealistic expectations.

Our Difference

1. Experienced partner recruiters work your search from start to finish.

No cold callers, no lawyers turned recruiter without experience, no one with less than 5 years of partner recruiting experience.

2. Exclusivity is protected.

We will never take on identical engagements for different clients.

3. Unparalleled experience.

The principals of NLS have placed over 100 partners in multiple practice areas in law firms around the world.

4. Continuity.

The same recruiter works with you from start to finish.

5. Market intelligence.

Our proprietary database of thousands of partners and network of informed sources, combined with the latest internet and print research tools, helps pinpoint the right candidates for our law firm clients. And, the right firm options for our partner candidates.

6. Public relations and marketing expertise.

There is a strong nexus between market image and effective recruiting.
Our management team includes 15 years of experience marketing law firms, practice groups and individual partners for a leading professional services consulting firm.

Search Over

Whatever the practice. Whatever the city.
The principals of NLS have placed over one hundred ‘Am Law 200’ partners around the world.

How can we help you?


Placed the partners that opened this Chicago-based, Am Law 30 PPP law firm’s office


Placed the Head of the Asia practice for this NY-based, Am Law Top 40 PPP law firm.

New York

Placed the co-head of Antitrust for this Philadelphia-headquartered Am Law Top 20 PPP law firm.

Washington DC

Placed the US head of International Trade for this Am Law Top 20 PPP law firm.

San Francisco

Placed an international arbitration partner for this Am Law Top 30 law firm with PPP of $2.0 million+


Placed the European head of Competition Law for this Philadelphia-headquartered Am Law Top 20 PPP law firm.


Placed the group that opened the office for this global Am Law Top 20 PPP law firm.

Hong Kong

Placed a capital markets group for this NY-based Am Law Top 30 PPP law firm.


Placed a Private Equity partner for this Chicago-based, Am Law Top 25 PPP law firm.


Placed a commercial litigation partner for this Chicago-based firm with
$2 billion+ in revenues


Placed an aircraft finance partner for this NY-based firm which has finished #1 on The American Lawyer’s “A List” 2 out of the last 4 years.

Abu Dhabi

Placed a Securities law partner for this Washington, DC-based Am Law Top 30 PPP law firm.


Placed a Structured Finance partner for this Chicago-based, Am Law Top 35 PPP law firm.

Success stories

We have placed all over the globe.



N Legal Search has worked with a host of leading global law firms including:

Akin Gump LLP
Arent Fox LLP
Baker Hostetler
Brown Rudnick LLP
Cadwalader, Wickersham & Taft LLP
Clifford Chance
Dechert LLP
Dentons LLP
Duane Morris LLP
Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP
Goodwin Procter LLP
Hogan Lovells LLP
Hughes Hubbard & Reed LLP
Jenner & Block LLP
Jones Day
K&L Gates LLP
Kaye Scholer LLP

Latham & Watkins
Mayer Brown LLP
McDermott, Will & Emery LLP
Milbank Tweed Hadley & McCloy LLP
Morgan Lewis & Bockius LLP
Morrison & Foerster LLP
Paul Hastings LLP
Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP
Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan LLP
Orrick LLP
Shearman & Sterling LLP
Sheppard, Mullin, Richter & Hampton LLP
Sidley Austin LLP
Vedder Price P.C.
Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP
White & Case LLP
Wilmer Hale LLP
Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati

Every call we make, every periodical we read, every website we investigate, every lead we pursue is all dedicated to one thing: recruiting partners and practice groups. Quite simply this kind of devotion leads to results. Partners happy in their new homes and law firms grateful to have had these partners join their ranks.


Please get in touch to see what we can do for you.

New York

733 Third Avenue
15th floor
New York  NY 10017

P 212-479-2540
F 646-417-7879