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Cox, Castle & Nicholson LLP


About Cox, Castle & Nicholson LLP

Cox, Castle & Nicholson is one of the largest real estate firms in the U.S., with more than 130 attorneys practicing in three California offices in all aspects of the real estate and construction industries.

Decentralized Power

In 1968, George Cox, Richard Castle, and Phil Nicholson set out to create a different kind of law firm. The founders thought the typical law firm was far too hierarchical and that bureaucracy and the pecking order got in the way of client service. Under three decades of stewardship by managing partner Nicholson, the firm spread management responsibilities around to give younger lawyers as many duties as they could handle.

Laser Focused

While the firm has grown over its first half century, it has remained focused on California real estate law. Cox, Castle & Nicholson has had a hand in developing some of the most iconic buildings in Southern California, including L.A.’s U.S. Bank Tower, and represented some of the largest and most prolific developers, including Robert Maguire and Ray Watt. But while Cox Castle lawyers only work in the real estate and construction industries, they handle just about every legal facet their clients require. The firm has substantial expertise in matters involving land and improved property acquisitions and dispositions; joint ventures; single and multi-family residential development; land use, entitlement and regulatory compliance; office, industrial, retail and mixed-use development, leasing and management; commercial lending and institutional investment; loan workouts and financial restructuring; construction; resort and hospitality; labor and employment; risk management and insurance; environmental compliance; renewable energy and natural resources; and tax and estate planning.

Building for the Future

Based on the firm founders’ views of how to develop a nimble firm, Cox Castle gives its attorneys significant responsibility on day one. First-year associates have opportunities to work directly with clients, negotiate deals, argue motions in court, take and defend depositions, and draft key legal documents. And the lawyers seem to like that responsibility. Nearly two-thirds of Cox Castle attorneys stay with the firm for at least five years, which is double the industry average. Many of the firm partners started their careers at Cox, Castle & Nicholson as summer clerks and have spent their entire careers at the firm.

Cox, Castle & Nicholson LLP

2029 Century Park East
Suite 2100
Los Angeles, CA 90067
Phone: (310) 284-2200

Firm Stats

Managing Partner: Dwayne McKenzie
Recruiting Chair: Alicia Vaz
Total No. Attorneys (2021):
100 - 150

Base Salary

1st year: $200,000
Summer Associate: $3,836/week

Employment Contact

Vachelle Willis
Director of Attorney Recruiting, Development and Diversity
General Recruiting Email:

No. of U.S. Offices: 3

No. of International Offices: 0

Major Office Locations

Irvine, CA
Los Angeles, CA (HQ)
San Francisco, CA

Major Departments

Institutional Investment & Finance
Labor & Employment
Land Use & Natural Resources
Litigation & Dispute Resolution
Real Estate
Risk Management & Insurance
Tax & Estate Planning
*See firm website for complete list of practice areas and industries.