sunset fishing sabbatical sabbattical law firm Abovethelaw Above the Law blog.jpgWe have a law professor friend who’s basically getting this entire year off. With pay. It’s one of the nicest perks in academia, and it’s called a sabbatical.
As it turns out, some law firms offer them too — although they’re not usually quite as grand. They’re more like longer-than-usual vacations (the subject of yesterday’s perk post).
But hey, a perk is a perk. So today’s open thread on a law firm perk or fringe benefit will focus on sabbaticals. Here’s what Perkins Coie does, according to an article last year from CNN/Money:

At this Seattle-based law firm, lawyers with 7 years of tenure, salaried staff with 10 years and non-exempt, hourly staff with 13 years may apply for two months of paid leave to spend any way they wish.

The only two requirements: they can’t work for another company and they have to let the firm know what they’re planning to do and why those activities are meaningful and rejuvenating to them.

Sabbaticals aren’t limited to the biggest of Biglaw, like Perkins Coie or Cadawalader (which, according to Vault, gives you a month-long sabbatical after five years). Polsinelli Shalton Flanigan Suelthaus, which has 300 lawyers over nine offices, has this policy:

After five years with the firm, associates are eligible to take an “associate sabbatical.” The firm provides two weeks paid vacation with two round trip tickets to Europe, Hawaii, or the Caribbean, plus $5,000 spending money. The billable hour target is reduced to 1,775 from 1,850 for the year.

Does your firm offer sabbaticals? If not, do you wish it did? (Okay, dumb question — of course you do.)
Please discuss, in the comments. Thanks.
Sabbatical year [Wikipedia]


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