Kilpatrick Stockton, an Atlanta-based law firm with a large Raleigh office, is merging with a smaller San Francisco firm.
The union with Townsend and Townsend and Crew will form a firm with nearly 650 lawyers in 17 offices. The new firm will be renamed Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton on Jan. 1.
In North Carolina, Kilpatrick also has offices in Charlotte and Winston-Salem. The Raleigh office has 38 lawyers, led by partner Gary K. Joyner.
Townsend has offices in Washington, but none in this state.
The combined firms will create one of the largest intellectual property law firms in the world.
“Considering that the Triangle has a lot of knowledge-based workers and a lot of technology companies we feel like it will be beneficial to us to have merged,” Joyner said. “We think it will enhance both our service offerings as well as maybe our attractiveness to other lawyers to possibly join us.”
Last month, Kilpatrick Stockton signed a lease to occupy the 14th floor in the CapTrust Tower at North Hills. For the last 12 years Kilpatrick’s offices have been in a Highwoods Properties building at 3737 Glenwood Ave.
Joyner said the new offices, which the company will move into on Jan. 1, will be more conducive to the way Kilpatrick practices law today. The 32,000-square-foot space is actually slightly smaller than its existing space.
“The way we’ve practiced law has changed in the last 12 years,” Joyner said. “If we stayed in the current space we would have had to retrofit it quite a bit to adapt it to the way we currently practice law.”
He said the firm no longer needs a large law library because most research is now done using the Internet. It also has fewer secretaries.
“Going in to new space allows us to start fresh,” Joyner said.
The 275,000-square-foot, 17-story CapTrust Tower opened last year. It is about 60 percent occupied.