The tables below rank law firms and in-house legal teams for the FT Innovative Lawyers North America awards.

New Products and Services
Rank Law firm Description Originality Leadership Impact Total
STANDOUT Norton Rose Fulbright The firm created Network Traffic Analyzer, a digital tool that lets corporate clients identify where data is being collected and disclosed. It creates a full view of data collected by apps, websites and internet-of-things devices. This allows the firm to provide legal recommendations to ensure clients are compliant with data protection and privacy laws. Commended: Steven Roosa 9 8 8 25
STANDOUT Dentons Dentons Data is a new multidisciplinary offering that combines legal advice with project management, process optimisation, data mapping, IT security assessment and vendor management. Clients select from a menu of services and pay fixed fees. Commended: Kirsten Thompson 8 8 8 24
HIGHLY COMMENDED Latham & Watkins Collaborated with blockchain technology company ConsenSys to create Automated Convertible Note, a free tool for blockchain start-ups raising funds. The tool makes offering digital tokens easier and more affordable while ensuring a range of financial regulatory requirements are met. Since launching in May 2019, the tool has been accessed more than 1,200 times.  9 8 6 23
HIGHLY COMMENDED Creel, García-Cuéllar, Aiza y Enríquez Created a practice area to advise entrepreneurs and venture capital groups in Mexico's start-up economy. The firm provides affordable legal advice and commercial support in exchange for a long-term commitment to engage with Creel on future legal transactions such as fundraising. Commended: Jean Michel Enríquez 6 8 8 22
HIGHLY COMMENDED Osler, Hoskin & Harcourt  The firm developed Estoppel Express, which automates and speeds up production of large volumes of estoppel certificates in commercial property transactions. The tool can save up to half the legal costs related to creation of the certificates. 7 8 7 22
COMMENDED Kirkland & Ellis Risk models and dashboards are now available to help the firm's clients assess and manage cross-border litigation risk. The mathematical models use data to provide recommendations. New models cover anti-money laundering and the assessment of workplace compliance risks. 7 7 7 21
COMMENDED Littler Mendelson Since February 2018, more than 120 clients have used Littler's pay equity assessment service, which automates pay equity audits. The system pinpoints statistically significant discrepancies in an employees’ pay.  7 7 7 21
COMMENDED Eversheds Sutherland The firm developed a career planning and mentoring programme for in-house legal teams. It works with clients to help them develop career progression schemes and strategies for in-house lawyers. Commended: Kristy Weathers 6 8 6 20
COMMENDED Nelson Mullins The firm automated regulatory compliance to meet the standards set by the US Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, which covers data privacy in the healthcare industry. Its web platform, HIPAA2Z, gives recommendations and tailors documents to clients' needs, saving time and cost. 5 8 7 20
COMMENDED White & Case An online tool created by the firm can be used free by anyone to find if their documentation or transactions will be affected by a rule change made by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the US. 5 8 7 20
COMMENDED Hogan Lovells The firm combined research, analysis and tools for clients that offer online education on a global scale. The different resources and services are packaged as a fixed-fee subscription product under the brand Education Goes International.  6 7 6 19
COMMENDED Kirkland & Ellis The firm wrote a universal policy form for insurers that provide Kirkland & Ellis clients with policies in connection with mergers and acquisitions. The form cuts out time and money that would otherwise be spent negotiating these policies.  6 6 7 19
COMMENDED Sheppard, Mullin, Richter & Hampton  Data analysis company Syndio and Sheppard Mullin worked together on automating a process to discover disparities in employee pay. Clients pay less than if hiring a consultancy and also gain legal advice.  7 6 6 19
New Products and Services (in-house)
Rank In-house legal team Description Originality Leadership Impact Total
Standout Western Union The money transfer company built a complex regulatory and compliance framework that enabled it to work with Amazon to create Amazon PayCode. This allowed Amazon customers to shop online but to pay locally in cash using Western Union's platform. The service is available in 20 countries. 8 8 8 24
Highly Commended General Motors The carmaker's legal team used their vehicle safety expertise to work with company engineers to help develop autonomous vehicles that meet US safety standards. The vehicles are the first fully integrated AVs to be compliant from the start of the manufacturing process. They can be used on public roads for more than testing and product evaluation.  7 7 8 22
Highly Commended Waymo The team helped with the December 2018 launch of Waymo One, the first commercial autonomous ride-hailing app. The service is available in parts of Phoenix, Arizona, and catered to about 1,000 riders in driverless cars in its first six months. 8 8 6 22
Commended Aon Company lawyers provided support for the Aon New Ventures Group, whose aim is to increase Aon's investment in innovative businesses in areas including intellectual property and reinsurance. A committee reviews the new ventures, taking into account development reviews and risk.  7 7 7 21
Commended Argo AI Company lawyers advised the autonomous vehicle group on intellectual property issues connected with the launch of Argoverse, two data sets released on a non-commercial licence for use by researchers in the autonomous vehicle industry. The data are supported by maps to test and teach self-driving vehicles to understand the surroundings.  7 7 7 21
Commended Nasdaq The legal and market-technology teams at the US stock exchange produced a tool that can detect spoofing, or the illegal use of algorithms to outpace other traders and manipulate the market.  7 6 8 21

Explore the Innovative Lawyers North America rankings 2019


  • Most innovative law firms
  • Most innovative in-house legal teams
  • Rule of law and access to justice
  • Collaboration

Business of Law

  • Technology and data
  • New business and service delivery models
  • New products and services
  • Talent, strategy and changing behaviours
  • Diversity and inclusion

Legal Expertise

  • Accessing new markets and capital
  • Creating a new standard
  • Enabling business growth and transformation
  • Litigation and disputes
  • Managing complexity and scale
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