When you are a kid, curiosity is a positive thing. Even as adults, we expect effective people to exhibit at least a modicum of intellectual curiosity.
But you shouldn’t confuse your legal employer for the man in the yellow hat. Not unless you want this to happen to you. A few weeks ago, a summer associate at Baker Botts learned an important lesson about curiosity and its proper place in law firm life.
Multiple tipsters report that a summer associate in one of Baker Botts’s Texas offices was dismissed after he logged onto the firm document system to get a sneak peak at the summer associate reviews that were being prepared for his class. He also allegedly poked around the full-time associate reviews that were available in the system. Our sources report that he was let go for these transgressions.
None of these documents were password protected.
After the jump, our tipsters ask why the summer was fired when the firm made no efforts to keep these associate and summer associate reviews secured.
Baker Botts would not confirm or deny our reports that one of its summers was let go for wanting to know how he (and others) were doing at the firm. A Baker Botts spokesperson furnished Above the Law with this statement:
We don’t comment on personnel matters.
But our sources contend that the summer was dismissed during the last week in June:
A summer was fired for reading reviews of the summer associates created by attorneys at the firm and for reading the minutes of the recruiting committee meetings. It happened [in June] and I was surprised it wasn’t on ATL yet.
Another source reports dismay at losing a colleague:
All this kid did was click on a couple of documents, and now he is gone. It feels like they wanted an excuse to get rid of another person. I mean, it’s not hard to make something password protected [on the Baker Botts system].
But other Baker Botts summers don’t mind one less person competing for an offer:
I can’t confirm [that the curious summer associate] has been fired … But it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to know you shouldn’t be opening documents that don’t belong to you. What if it was a confidential settlement agreement? I’m sure he’ll enjoy 3L [interviewing].
In previous years, you had to do something outrageous to get canned as a summer associate. Pooping in the firm garbage can is considered outrageous (if you think you know what we’re talking about, please email us at email@example.com). But this summer, it seems that the slightest transgression could get you fired.
Stay on your toes, summer associates; your Biglaw crucible has only just begun.
Earlier: We Know Where the HLS 2L Worked This Summer
We Know What You Did Harvard Summer (Or: A summer associate fired, and it’s not even July.)