Boutique Law Firms, BuckleySandler, Litigators, Musical Chairs

Musical Chairs: Skadden Partners Jumping Ship

BuckleySandler logo.jpgYou don’t see this everyday. Two D.C.-based partners of Skadden Arps partners are leaving the firm. And it’s not even to work for the government.

The two Skadden D.C. litigators are Andrew Sandler and Benjamin Klubes. Associates were told in group meetings late yesterday afternoon. Skadden furnished Above the Law with the following statement:

Andrew Sandler and Benjamin Klubes are forming their own law firm to be named BuckleySandler, which will also include all of the 36 attorneys from the firm Buckley Kolar, a DC-based boutique that focuses on regulatory issues affecting the financial services industry. In addition, Andrew Sandler will become the CEO of Corporate Risk Advisors, a multi-disciplinary consulting firm providing services to the financial services industry.

Our sources weigh in after the jump.

One tipster put the news simply:

Litigation people are freaked out!

Another was even more direct:

This is gonna suck.

According to our sources, Skadden management itself was surprised by the moves. But we understand that the people at the meeting did everything they could to allay the fears of associates about the strength of the practice.

When we spoke to Andrew Sandler, he was very positive about the future of Skadden:

I am not leaving with any concern about the future of the firm. I continue to hold high regard for the firm, its lawyers, and its capabilities.

Sandler emphasized that he was leaving for the professional challenge of building something new.

Time will tell, but it doesn’t look like Skadden associates should read too much into these departures.

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