Ballard Spahr has added a new mortgage banking practice and hired three partners and one associate from Patton Boggs. Richard J. Andreano, Jr., John D. Socknat, and Michael S. Waldron are joining Ballard Spahr as partners, while associate Reid F. Herlihy is also switching firms.

Alan Kaplinsky, the head of Ballard Spahr's Consumer Financial Services Group, said that although the firm has been involved in litigation matters involving mortgage companies, it wanted to expand the practice to cover regulatory and enforcement matters.

"For quite some time, we had been trying to identify a group of lawyers that were steeped in the mortgage bank financial area," Mr. Kaplinsky said. "We felt we needed more depth than we had. We couldn't be any happier that they are joining us."