About Us

Founded on client service in 1922; centered to deliver today.

In the early days, our founders developed a reputation for excellence; F.M. Bass, Frank Berry and Cecil Sims were fastidious, intellectually curious and highly sought after. They pioneered our now robust mergers and acquisitions practice by participating in notable transactions such as the Cheek-Neal Coffee Company, known for Maxwell House Coffee, in its sale to Postum in 1928 for $20 million and by representing Fourth and First National Bank in its merger with American National Bank in 1930. A few years later, Cecil Sims initiated one of the firm’s first alternative fee arrangements, which lasted from 1934 until the late 1960’s, with Vanderbilt University’s Chancellor Kirkland.

Ninety years after its inception, Bass, Berry & Sims continues to lead clients through increasingly complex legal challenges. Our highly skilled attorney teams aim to provide a profound understanding of our clients’ businesses and perspective, sound judgment, efficiency and responsiveness to every matter. Recently, we represented a Nashville-based, leading provider of healthcare services in its leveraged buyout (LBO), which was, at the time, the largest LBO in history; we were engaged as the New York Stock Exchange’s Regulatory Auditor; and we successfully tried the largest case in Tennessee involving the breach of a $1.4 billion merger agreement. We advance opportunities and deliver results.

Our Clients

  • “A source praises the firm for its ‘very talented lawyers,’ and adds that it is ‘as good as any firm I have worked with nationally.'” (from Chambers USA 2021, Bankruptcy/Restructuring Practice Profile)
  • “The firm gives good value and they are very good lawyers. They have both experience and expertise.” (from Chambers USA 2020, Intellectual Property Practice Profile)
  • “The firm is one of the best I have worked with in my entire career. Their technical expertise and ability to communicate some extremely complicated things is outstanding.” (from Chambers USA 2019, Corporate/M&A Practice Profile)
  • “They are our go-to firm for pretty much anything. Their responsiveness and customer service is absolutely excellent, the best I have worked with. I have them on speed dial.” (from Chambers USA 2018, Healthcare Practice Profile)
  • “The team is praised for its high-level of expertise and professionalism, as well as its combination of good legal expertise and understanding of the business matters at hand.” (from Chambers USA 2017, Banking & Finance Practice Profile)
  • “Excellent, one of the best in the country.” (from Chambers USA 2016, Environment Practice Profile)
  • “The firm’s performance was outstanding. I’d put them up there with the big firms globally – some of the finest attorneys I’ve seen.” (from Chambers USA 2015, Corporate/M&A Practice Profile)
  • “The team is very knowledgeable and very intelligent – they can foresee potential pitfalls and issues a long time before they come up.” (from Chambers USA 2014, Real Estate Practice Profile)
  • “They consistently provide great quality product at a reasonable price. Very caring and professional in their relationships, work ethic and commitment.” (from Chambers USA 2013, Labor & Employment Practice Profile)
  • “If I were picking out the best firms around, I’d always start with Bass, Berry & Sims.” (from Chambers USA 2012, Litigation Practice Profile)

Our Numbers

  • Primary outside counsel to more than 35 public companies
  • More than 75 practice groups
  • Long-term client relationships: 54% of our clients have been with the firm for 10 or more years
  • 4 offices: Nashville, Knoxville, Memphis and Washington, D.C.

Our Awards

“In this age of consolidation in the legal market and the quest to become larger, we remain committed to being as large as our clients need us to be, committed to being an extraordinary law firm that delivers value and results to our clients.” Todd Rolapp, Managing Partner