THE HISTORY OF THE INNER CIRCLE OF ADVOCATESWelcome to the Inner Circle of Advocates' website
The Inner Circle of Advocates is an invitation-only group of the best plaintiff lawyers in the United States. Since its inception in 1972, our organization has included the top plaintiff trial attorneys in the nation among its membership. Our mission is to promote the highest standards of courtroom competence and the mutual fellowship and exchange of knowledge among outstanding trial lawyers. Membership is limited to attorneys of exceptional qualifications who are respected among their peers and who are experienced and skillful in the handling of courtroom litigation. Membership in The Inner Circle of Advocates is testament to our members' accomplishments as plaintiff trial attorneys. Although spread across the country, members share experience, skill, and knowledge, and often function as a collective law firm in the pursuit of justice.
Many times people who have been injured and families who have lost loved ones find themselves facing big corporations or insurance companies with unlimited resources to deny just compensation to those they harmed. Through the work and skill of our talented members, cover-ups can be exposed and those at fault held accountable. By punishing the guilty for their wrongs, we make America a safer place.
We thank you for visiting our website and hope that you will find it informative and helpful. Our members stand ready to assist you with any questions you may have.
Brian J. Panish, President
The Inner Circle of Advocates
Membership in The Inner Circle of Advocates is by invitation and based on criteria that include an applicant’s performance and success in the courtroom. The Inner Circle carefully evaluates experience, reputation, judicial references, and peer evaluations to identify the best 100 trial lawyers in the country. Typically, applicants are expected to have at least three verdicts of one million dollars or a recent verdict in excess of ten million dollars to be considered for membership. The Inner Circle looks for cutting edge lawyers in their jurisdiction who are active courtroom lawyers with a willingness to learn and teach about our craft and to be part of a close-knit, sharing group of professional colleagues. Membership in The Inner Circle of Advocates is not just an accolade, it is a commitment to participate in a unique laboratory of professional advancement.
The Inner Circle of Advocates was conceived by Tucson, Arizona, attorney Richard Grand on May 24, 1972 when he decided there was a need for an organization made up of the most skilled plaintiff attorneys to share information about their work. Richard created the logo, which represents a seven figure verdict of $1 million or more. He decided that at least one million dollar verdict and the completion of fifty personal injury cases were the threshold for membership. Total membership was to be limited to fifty members. These same qualifications apply today with three changes – members must now have at least three verdicts in excess of $1 million or one verdict in excess of $10 million with the most recent verdict being no more than five years old, members must have a substantial number of jury trials, and the membership total has been increased to one hundred members.
“My goal was an organization of highly experienced plaintiff attorneys who were willing to share information about experts, techniques, and whatever it took to be a great trial lawyer. I think this goal has been consistently achieved since the organization was created.”
Richard made contact with lawyers around the country who appeared to be qualified. The first meeting was held on June 26, 1972 in San Francisco and eleven lawyers showed up. They all sat at a round table and began an exchange of questions and ideas. This became the first Inner Circle roundtable session. By the end of 1972 membership had grown to twenty members. Within a short time membership reached the maximum level and remains at full capacity to this date. Richard pointed out that Inner Circle of Advocates members believe that by achieving justice for their clients, they also achieve changes for the good of society as a whole.
Richard died suddenly and peacefully in his sleep on April 7, 2013, but his vision and The Inner Circle of Advocates live on.
Click here to watch Richard Grand's Video