Deferral Stipend, Start Dates

McDermott Will & Emery: Another December Deferral Extension

McDermott logo.JPGMcDermott Will & Emery was supposed to have its incoming class start in January. But now that January is almost upon us, MWE is the latest firm to change its mind.
The news first broke on Facebook late last week, via status updates of unhappy incoming associates:

♫ “re-deferment in december. happy holidays.”

Yeah, there is a lot of that going around. It’s like the Biglaw version of the Lexus “December to Remember” ad campaign.
McDermott will be offering the (now standard) deferral extension stipend of $5,000/month. Given that the firm has been cost cutting for a while, incoming associates should probably be grateful for the stipend they will receive.
Additional details, plus a statement from the firm, after the jump.

A spokesperson for McDermott Will & Emery furnished Above the Law with the following statement:

At this time, we have deferred the start date for a number of our incoming associates based on need for associate services in select practice groups. Deferred associates will be paid $5,000 per month, receive medical and dental insurance coverage, as well as other benefits.

The firm did not say how long these associates are being deferred, so it appears that we have a classic flipping the bird situation.
Of course, when Alston & Bird re-deferred its incoming class, we were way back in September. MWE is pulling the rug out from people in early December. I hope nobody had apartments lined up for January.
With that in mind, people should really contact their firms before they sign a lease or fork over a security deposit. Given the fact that some firms seem willing to defer associates so late in the game, it is better for incoming people to be safe than sorrily locked into a rent situation they cannot afford.
Good luck.
Earlier: Reversed Perk Watch: McDermott Will & Emery Scales Back on Benefits
Deferral Extension Season: Alston & Bird Make Indefinite Deferral
Mayer Brown Re-Deferment: A December Surprise

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