Thanks for your responses to our recent call for memos. Here are two more firms that have announced associate pay raises:
1. Crowell & Moring: Starting salaries to $160,000, effective August 1. Minimum billables to 1900 hours, effective September 1. Associates who do not wish to meet the new minimum are invited to reach “alternative arrangements” with the firm.
2. Dow Lohnes: No, Rupert Murdoch is not trying to buy them. Dow Lohnes is an AmLaw 200 law firm with a significant presence in Atlanta. Will their move to the $160K scale encourage other Atlanta firms to follow suit?
* Did John Carney’s guest post attacking Dahlia Lithwick tick you off? Then read this, it’s funny. [QuizLaw]
* Is having a personal injury lawyer in your “hot yoga” class a wise idea? Not as bad as you might think. [The Recorder]
* Could admin law be turned into a computer game? Quite possibly — although satisfaction not guaranteed (sorry, Roy Pearson). [Concurring Opinions]
* Should Aaron Charney move to Miami? Give him a lifetime supply of SPF 45, and send him on his way. [Daily Business Review]
Okay, this is kinda random. But it’s Friday, so please give us some latitude.
(Also, we have previously covered this subject, in a way that connected it to the legal world. So there.)
As you all know, today is I-Day: the first day that Apple’s coveted iPhone will be available for sale to the general public. At 6 PM, Apple and AT&T stores will open their doors, and the masses will flood in. Long lines have already formed in different cities around the country.
We were just IM’ing with one ATL reader standing outside an AT&T store waiting for his iPhone. If you’re curious, you can read portions of our exchange after the jump.
It’s fitting that on this, the last week of the Supreme Court term, LEWW is considering a major test case. The issue: One couple has a Rhodes Scholarship, one has a SCOTUS clerkship, and one has two YLS degrees. How do we rank them?
Throw in a divorce, a famous grandparent, a couple of PhDs, a blog, three Courts of Appeals officiants, and a dash of “flava“, and we’ve got lots of credentials to chew up and spit out.
Here are the candidates:
Our emailcorrespondence with the super-hot lawyer turned Playboy model, Oona O’Connell, continues.
A brief question-and-answer session, plus an uncropped version of this Oonalicious photo, after the jump.
After yesterday, we thought they were all done for the Term. We thought wrong.
Some notable news from the Supreme Court today. Lyle Denniston of the invaluable SCOTUSblog reports:
In a startling turn of events in the legal combat over the war on terrorism, the Supreme Court on Friday agreed to reconsider the appeals in the Guantanamo Bay detainee cases. It vacated its April 2 order denying review of the two packets of cases. The Court then granted review, consolidated the cases, and said they would be heard in a one-hour argument in the new Term starting Oct. 1.
Such a switch by the Court — from denial to rehearing and new argument and decision — may not have occurred since 1947, in Hickman v. Taylor, 329 U.S. 495, legal sources said Friday.
[Thumbnail image. Click to enlarge. Photograph courtesy of Oona O'Connell.] There should be a law — against this kind of hotness in a U.S. law school classroom!
As you may recall, lawyer cum Playboy model Oona O’Connell was not pleased by our prior coverage of her. She recently sent us an angry email, taking us to task for publishing malicious gossip.
Our response to Oona O’Connell, followed by her reply, after the jump.
Back on Wednesday, we reported that Howrey LLP plans to chuck lockstep compensation for its associates. Starting in 2008, the firm will employ a “competency model,” in which it would “determine salary based on individual evaluations and various forms of progress indicators.”
Today our scoop was picked up by The Recorder (and then by the WSJ Law Blog). From The Recorder:
In a radical departure from the status quo, Howrey is getting rid of lockstep compensation for its associates….
While Howrey first-years will start at the market rate — the firm recently raised them to $160,000 — all other associates will advance through different levels based on personal evaluations instead of seniority. Each level has a salary range, and [partner Henry] Bunsow said top performers would be paid more than market, while some could make less.
“The goal is not to have associates make less than their counterparts at other firms,” Bunsow said. “If poor performers can get a better deal somewhere else, that may be a marketplace reality — we would hope that this system wouldn’t promote that.”
“The goal is not to have associates make less than their counterparts at other firms” — sounds a bit defensive, but whatever.
This system will be highly customized, but complicated:
The evaluations will be based on performance and experience, which could shorten the partnership track for some and lengthen it for others. Since Howrey is a litigation-focused firm, factors like writing, deposition, trial practice and client presentation skills will be considered, Bunsow said. Although there will be bonuses based on hours, that will be just one of many considerations in the evaluation, he added….
Associates will be assigned to partners who will be responsible for their development and their individual evaluations. A full-time staff person will be hired to oversee the program and to make sure that associates feel they are being treated fairly, Bunsow said.
Okay, we’re getting a headache. This sounds like the brainchild of a Soviet bureaucrat.
And this is just the simplified version. If you’re interested in the dirty details, an internal Howrey email — which includes mention of a “Competency Czar” — appears after the jump.
Here’s a quick follow-up on Wednesday’s post, reporting on Supreme Court clerk hiring for October Term 2008. That’s not the Term whose clerks will start showing up for work next month — the October Term 2007 clerks are listed here — but the Term after that.
Interestingly enough, the two justices thought most likely to leave the Court next, Justice John Paul Stevens and Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, are both done with their clerk hiring for OT 2008. And we also hear that RBG has hired at least one clerk for OT 2009 — very CT-esque of her to hire that far into the future.
Thanks to everyone who submitted SCOTUS clerk hiring info, by email and in the comments. We’ve folded them into our evolving list of OT 2008 law clerks. Check it out, after the jump.
In a land that is right here and in a time that is right now, a technology has arisen so powerful that it can replace basic human document review. Is it time to bow down before our new robot overlords?
First, here’s a little story about me: my life in the legal world began as a paralegal. My first case was a GIANT patent infringement case that was already six years old and had involved as many as five companies, multiple US courts, the ITC and an international standards committee. I knew nothing about any of this.
On my first day, my supervisor (a paralegal with at least eight other cases driving her crazy) sat me down in front of a Concordance database with a 100,000+ patents and patent file histories. “Code these,” she said. I learned that “coding”, for the purposes of this exercise, meant manually typing the inventor’s name, the title of the patent, the assignee, the file date, and other objective data for each document. I worked on that project – and only that project – for at least the first six months of my job. After a week or so, time began to blur.
What I know, in retrospect and with absolutely certainty, is that as time began to blur, so did my judgment. So did my attention to detail. If you could tell me that I did not make at least one mistake a day – one inconsistent spelling, one reversed day and month, one incorrectly spaced title – I frankly would need to see your evidence. I would not believe it. The human mind is trainable but it is not a machine.
Watch to find out what some of our subscribers received in their May box!
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We currently have a number of active openings for associate roles at US and UK firms in HK / China, Singapore and two new in-house openings. As always, please feel free to reach out to us at email@example.com in order to get details of current openings in Asia, as well as to discuss the Asia markets in general and what we expect for openings later this year. Our Evan Jowers and Robert Kinney will be in Beijing the week of March 25 and Evan Jowers will be in Hong Kong the week of April 1, if you would like to meet them in person.
The US associate openings we have in law firms are in the usual areas of M&A, cap markets, FCPA / white collar litigation, finance, and project finance. The most urgent of our top tier (top 15 US or magic circle) law firm openings in Asia (among many other firm openings that we have in Asia) are as follows:
• 2nd to 5th year mandarin fluent M&A associates needed in Beijing and Hong Kong at several firms;
• Korean fluent 2nd to 4th year cap markets associate needed in Hong Kong;
• 2nd to 5th year Japanese fluent M&A associates needed in Tokyo;
• 4th to 6th year mandarin fluent cap markets associate needed in Hong Kong;
• 2nd to 4th year M&A / cap markets mix associate needed in Singapore.
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