Even though Pennsylvania's new governor is from the western part of the state, that doesn't necessarily mean that more of the state's legal work will go to Pittsburgh law firms. Gov. Tom Corbett already has named a number of Philadelphia lawyers to key posts in his administration.

Many Pennsylvania lawyers believed that former Gov. Edward G. Rendell gave a large percentage of the state's legal work to Philadelphia firms, especially Ballard Spahr, where he was a partner before he became governor. He rejoined the firm after leaving office this year. But Ballard Spahr Chair Arthur Makadon said no firm should rely on work coming from the state.

"Anything you get from the state is extra and we don't build it into anything," Mr. Makadon said. "We don't rely on it."