UPDATE: We have additional coverage on this story here.
Associate layoffs are sometimes conducted in a stealth manner. Partner layoffs are always conducted in secret. Forcing out partners has been a big part of the Great Recession. But when firms “quietly ask partners to leave,” the information actually stays pretty quiet.
But last night, the Above the Law inbox started buzzing with news that four real estate partners had been asked to leave Paul Hastings.
UPDATE: Sources now report that only three partners are being asked to leave.
How do we know this? Well, Paul Hastings may have quietly asked these people to leave, but their offices were packed up loudly.
We understand that all of the departures are in Paul Hastings’s New York real estate department. We’ve got the names, details, and a firm statement, after the jump.
We understand that the partners are officially out on Friday. But news of the departures went around the office yesterday; boxes are pretty hard to hide.
Our sources report that the three partners on their way out are: Bob Grados, Ken Friedman, and Walter Schleimer.
But tipsters tell us that the three partners will land at another firm. No word yet on which firm that may be.
Paul Hastings issued the following statement about the departures:
We don’t comment on firm departures, but we wish them well.
We imagine that this kind of thing is happening at Biglaw offices all across the country. We’ve heard anecdotal evidence that partners in slow practice groups are feeling the squeeze at a number of places. It makes sense. After you cut staff and fire associates, decreasing the number of partners is one of the last ways to keep profits per partner high.
If you know of partner departures at your firm, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.