Shapiro, Lifschitz & Schram

“The firm gets personally involved with their clients and their work to achieve the most successful outcomes.”

Robert G. Hisaoka – President, RRR, LLC


Why would an attorney want to practice at Shapiro, Lifschitz & Schram? That's simple. We are that rare breed of attorney, the type that are creative in deals and actually try cases, prefer personable relationships with clients, and know the law well enough to have fun practicing it. Whether we're serving as outside counsel to negotiate a sophisticated business contract, trying a complex case in court, or working with a client to develop a real estate project, we work harder, longer and smarter to make our clients winners. It's a big idea from a small firm, and it infuses our every encounter - we seek people who share these same values.


Nestled in a four-story Victorian brownstone near Dupont Circle in Washington, DC, Shapiro, Lifschitz & Schram, P.C. is a boutique law firm with nine attorneys practicing in four distinct areas of law. We apply our experience, infuse our passion, and deliver solutions for our clients in the areas of business, construction, real estate law and commercial litigation. What makes us unique is the way we do business. We’re a firm that works the way our clients need us to work and we treat the practice of law like an art form – and we take great pride in that.

We truly recognize that our people are our greatest asset. While many firms pay that statement lip service, we actually believe it, and we’re confident that our team is our best reference. We value our professional and support staff not only for providing top-quality service to our clients, but also for contributing to a happy and productive workplace. We all enjoy the firm’s relatively small size, which contributes to our collegial atmosphere. You might think that because of our size, we’re overly informal or casual. Not true; we dress the professional part and behave with dignity at all times – we promise! At the same time, there are no stuffed shirts and prima donnas here – it’s just simply not our culture. Our size enables us to really know each other and collaborate to respond nimbly to our clients’ needs. Our employees appreciate the way that we interact with each other and the firm’s clients, as evidenced by the fact that some have been with us for more than 15 years.

Our work ethic and enthusiasm for our craft often require us to devote long hours at the office. Fortunately, we have been able to create a unique and welcoming work environment where hard work and long hours can also be fulfilling, rewarding and yes, even fun. Not only do we take pride in the work environment we offer, but also we are truly committed to the long-term financial security and well-being of our employees, particularly those who commit themselves to a long-term relationship with us. At Shapiro, Lifschitz, & Schram, rewarding commitment is simply part of our culture.

Quality of Life:

In support of the culture we strive to preserve, the firm recently received an honorable mention from Washingtonian Magazine as a “Great Place to Work,” based on a survey of 225 businesses, nonprofits and government agencies in the Washington, DC area.

Not only do we work well together, but we play together nicely too. We recognize that all work and no play makes us a dull – and less productive - firm. So in 2007, the firm gave each employee a trip to Key West, Florida, for a four-day, three-night stay in a luxury hotel, as a token of our appreciation for everyone’s hard work. In 2008, the firm gave each employee a weekend stay at an upscale inn in Middleburg, Virginia, in appreciation for everyone’s contribution to a successful year. We do understand that without dedicated and committed people, we would not be successful. We also know that success is much sweeter when shared.

Aside from trips, it is not uncommon to find the firm bowling or playing billiards together. We also recognize that no one wants to slosh around on a rainy day to go get lunch, so we provide a catered lunch on such days. These gestures of support and generosity to our employees are important to us, because our employee’s happiness is important to us.

Employment Practices:

We recognize that people like to be valued for the long hours and hard work they put in. So in response, we offer a generous benefits package that is among the best in the industry. We provide health, life, disability and long-term care insurance, as well as 401(k), profit sharing and defined benefit plans. We also maintain a pay scale (including bonus programs) that is competitive with other law firms of our size in Washington, DC. In addition, we provide many amenities which include generous leave and wellness/fitness benefits, expense allowances for attorneys, financial planning assistance, a summer outing, a holiday party, and periodic social events, just to name a few.

We value intelligence, a good work ethic, and a team spirit. We also believe in and embrace the fact that diversity creates a more interesting work environment and facilitates better results. To that end, we do not discriminate on the basis of age, race, sex, religion, sexual orientation or country of origin, and we are committed to maintaining a truly diverse firm.

What Our Attorneys Are Saying:

  • The firm has a high-quality transactional practice that is usually found only in big firms, but there’s none of the big-firm bureaucracy or political in-fighting. The firm has always kept up-to-date with technology and provided each attorney with the tools necessary to serve clients efficiently. Bob Foster, Attorney
  • The attorneys and staff at SLS take pride in working together toward the common goal of achieving the best results for our clients. I never feel as if I'm on an island or alone with any one of my cases or tasks. The senior attorneys and partners are always accessible and ready to offer guidance and support. George Carry, Attorney

Did You Know . . .

Members of the SLS trial group have tried in excess of 50 jury trials and 75 bench trials?

The SLS construction group has worked on sports stadiums across the country including Orioles Park in Baltimore and Paul Brown Stadium in Cincinnati?

The SLS construction group has worked on power plant projects across the country?

In 2007 SLS was selected for an Honorable Mention as one of the Best Places To Work in Washington DC?

Ron Shapiro, Steve Schram and Judd Lifschitz have all been selected as SuperLawyers by Law and Politics?

The SLS office building is an historic townhouse constructed in the late 1800s?

SLS has been selected by Martindale-Hubbell as a Preeminent Law Firm?

SLS trial lawyers have argued appeals in the U.S. Circuit Courts of Appeal for the 4th, 5th, 9th, D.C. and Federal Circuit?

SLS trial lawyers have been lead trial counsel in cases in Arizona, California, District of Columbia, Florida, Louisiana, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Texas, and Virginia, - to name just a few?

Virtually all the cases that SLS trial lawyers mediated have been favorably settled at mediation?

The transactional group at SLS was lead counsel on one of the largest, most complex mixed-use projects in downtown Washington, DC involving 4 lenders and 6 property owners?

In appreciation for the outstanding efforts of each of its employees during 2007, SLS gave everyone (attorneys, paralegals, and staff) a 4 day/3 night expense paid trip to Key West, Florida?

The transactional group at SLS has represented tenants in more than 200 retail leases in the Mid-Atlantic region?

Every attorney in the transactional group at SLS has at least 15 years experience?

The transactional group at SLS has represented developers in the purchase, construction, financing and/or sale of more than 75 multi-family apartment projects?

The transactional group at SLS has represented real estate investors and developers with respect to property in Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Delaware, Maryland, the District of Columbia, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Florida, Texas, Tennessee, Michigan and the U.S. Virginia Islands?

Attorneys in the transactional group at SLS have represented eight national banks in commercial real estate loans?

Attorneys in the transactional group at SLS have represented the FDIC, the Resolution Trust Corporation and several banking institutions in loan workout transactions throughout the Mid-Atlantic region?

The transactional group at SLS has represented homebuilders and commercial real estate developers in work-outs of individual loans and also for work-outs of large portfolios involving dozens of properties in several states?

The trial lawyers of SLS have numerous reported decisions to their credit?