Pillsbury: Attorneys Brace For ‘Involuntary’ Departure Program

Pillsbury logo.JPGA week ago, we brought you news about Pillsbury’s “Voluntary Departure Program.” The firm adopted the program after partner Robert Robbins announced the firm’s impending layoffs on the Acela last month.

On Tuesday, Pillsbury informed associates who requested voluntary departure if they had been accepted. We don’t yet have the numbers for how many people decided to go quietly.

But we do have the official Pillsbury FAQ for people who inquired about the program. The seven page document contains some very interesting nuggets. Below, we paste the top line points:

Pillsbury departure FAQ pafge 1.JPG

Shouldn’t everybody who was employed throughout 2008 receive the 2008 bonus, regardless of what happens to them in 2009?

In any event, it looks like Pillsbury is moving full speed ahead with the “involuntary” part of the plan. All aboard after the jump.

Is Pillsbury really going to give less than three months severance to the people the firm fires involuntarily? Are they going to refuse to pay them their 2008 bonuses? You wouldn’t think that Pillsbury would want to put the people it involuntarily lays off in a worse position than other people who have been fired from peer firms. But unless they do, what was the point of the voluntary departure program in the first place?

We might find out soon enough. In what has become a recurring theme at Above the Law recently, we’ve got dreaded conference room information leaking out of Pillsbury. Rooms have been booked for Thursday, March 5th. There is nary a client-matter number to be found.

The firm did not respond to an immediate request for comment from Above the Law. But a tipster reports:

For the rest of those that opted for “involuntary reduction,” (i.e. your ass just gets laid off), looks like Thursday is d-day as there are conference rooms scheduled in offices here from 9a-12p… and HR has reserved them all.

It could be nothing. It could just be the announcement of the number of attorneys who “participated” in the voluntary departure program (see the excerpt below). But in the voluntary departure FAQ, there are a couple of answers that suggest Pillsbury wants to move quickly from the voluntary to the involuntary stage:

Pillsbury departure FAQ page 2.JPG

And there’s also this:

Pillsbury departure FAQ page 3.JPG

We’ll let you know what goes down at Pillsbury tomorrow as soon as we hear it.

Earlier: A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to New York (Or: Pillsbury associates, brace yourselves.)

Pillsbury’s ‘Voluntary Departure’ Plan

(hidden for your protection)

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