Start Dates, Summer Associates, WolfBlock

Nationwide Start Date Watch: WolfBlock

We bring you more word of postponed start dates for incoming associates. The latest comes from the Philly firm of WolfBlock, as first reported in the Philadelphia Business Journal:

WolfBlock Wolf Block Schorr Solis Cohen.jpgIn response to the economic slowdown, Wolf Block has delayed the start date of its entry-level lawyers for two months. The firm said all but one of eight recent law school graduates were told not to report for work until November 10 rather than the normal start date shortly after Labor Day.

Hiring partner Andrew Chirls said the first-year associates, who get paid $135,000 a year, will receive a $5,000 stipend to tide them over.

That works out to $2,500 a month, or $30,000 on an annual basis. But hey, at least they don’t have to work for it.
If you’re interested, there’s more — including info about summer-associate offer rates — after the jump.

“It’s about supply and demand,” Chirls said. “We’re in a slow economy and we want to make sure we have work for them when they get here.” Chirls said one associate originally slated to start in Philadelphia will move to New York where he will start in September in the busy bankruptcy practice there.

No other large Philadelphia firm has said it was backing up start dates for entry-level associates though there have been rumors that some are considering it.

A partner at another Philadelphia firm tells us:

The fact that they are the only firm in town deferring start date for new associates speaks volumes. At least they are not trying to put spin on this, like the bogus “client conflicts” story they put out about the breakdown of the planned merger with Akerman Senterfitt.

The PBJ also reports that Wolf Block “made full-time job offers for next fall to six of its nine summer interns” — which means that it no-offered one-third of its summer class. That’s a pretty high no-offer proportion (although, in the firm’s defense, when your class is that small, percentages will vary more from year to year).
Start date delayed: Wolf Block [Philadelphia Business Journal]

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