Layoffs, Staff Layoffs

Nationwide Layoff Watch: DLA Piper Cuts 120 121

Panic button.JPGEarlier today, we told you that some DLA Piper incoming first years were worried about their standing with the firm. We’re now going to clear some runway space for that worry to take off into a full panic.
Sources report that DLA Piper has laid off 120 people today. DLA would not confirm our reports, but we have multiple independent sources telling us that 20 lawyers and 100 staffers are being let go today.
Update (1:11 PM): The firm is now confirming that DLA laid off 121 people: 21 lawyers and 100 staff. Read the full statement after the jump.
No word on severance, but we also understand that New York and Chicago will be the offices that are hardest hit by today’s news.
Some instant DLA history, and an update from the firm, after the jump.

DLA Piper logo.jpgThis brings the total DLA Piper carnage to 440 U.S. or U.K. attorneys and staff let go this year.
And remember that DLA has already tried to cut costs by cutting associate salaries. In May, the firm attempted to institute a 20% salary cut on associates, based on their hours. But the firm soon reversed course and went with a 10%, across the board salary cut regardless of hours.
Are today’s actions a direct result of deciding against a larger salary cut a couple of months ago?
We understand that incoming first years are still on track to start in either January 2010 or January 2011.
On Monday, Law Shucks reported that the march towards layoffs had slowed down over the past couple of months. But clearly layoffs are not over yet. Good luck, (former) DLA Piper employees.
Read the full statement from DLA Piper below.
During the last year, we have experienced the worst economic period in generations. We have carefully gauged its impact on our business and responded by closely scrutinizing and reducing all of our material expenses across the board. We also reduced our workforce in February, attempting to preserve as many jobs as possible while avoiding any further reductions later in the year. Unfortunately economic weakness has continued, demand across the legal sector remains soft, and it is increasingly clear that major improvements in the US and global economy will not occur before 2010. We have therefore regretfully concluded that we must reduce our ranks now by 21 associates and 100 staff. While the firm’s financial position remains strong, a tightly-managed cost structure is essential to compete effectively during these uncertain times. We value all of our people and are very grateful for their contributions to the firm, and we have worked hard to consider and employ every reasonable measure to avoid lawyer and staff reductions.
Our practice group leaders, office managing partners and senior administrative staff are meeting today with those directly affected to discuss the details of this decision. The firm will provide severance benefits, outplacement counseling and other resources to support their transition. This reduction is based on the economic climate and does not reflect on the performance of those affected.
We will be holding town hall meetings in some of our offices on Thursday to provide you with an opportunity to hear directly about these developments, and you will receive notification of time and place shortly. Your understanding, support and consideration for your colleagues as we move through this will be vital. Please take the time to attend a town hall meeting. Thank you.
Earlier: Mixed Messages From DLA Piper to its Incoming 1st Years?
Nationwide Layoff Watch: DLA Piper Lays Off 180
International Layoff Watch: DLA Piper Cuts 140 U.K. Employees
This Week in Layoffs: Mid-Year Layoff Review
DLA Piper Salary Cut Follow Up
DLA Piper Gives Back 10% of the Salary Cut

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