Biglaw, Layoffs, Secretaries / Administrative Assistants, Staff Layoffs

Voluntary Buyouts Being Offered By Biglaw’s ‘Best Brand’

It was just last week we were informed that the firms designated as “super rich” among all other Biglaw firms — specifically, the 20 with profits per partner of $2 million or more and revenue per lawyer of $1 million or more — were only getting richer.

That being the case, we can’t imagine that these Biglaw titans are hurting for cash, especially when the chasm between the super rich and everyone else keeps growing wider and wider.

This is why we were shocked to find out that the top-tier law firm recently revered for having the best brand in the business was trying to trim its ranks with offers of buyout packages…

Word on the street is that Skadden Arps, a “super rich” firm that saw a 4.4 percent increase in PPP and a 5.5 percent increase in RPL in the most recent Am Law 100 rankings, is offering one-time-only, “optional” buyout packages to members of its secretarial staff. According to a tipster, thus far, at least 20 such offers have been made to people working out of the firm’s New York office.

One source described the packages as “very generous,” with between six months to a year’s worth of salary being offered, plus all COBRA health insurance payments. Apparently there’s a top-secret Facebook group where those who have received buyout offers are discussing the particulars. We reached out to the firm for confirmation, but haven’t heard back yet. We’ll update this post if and when we do.

To be fair, this ranks among one of the most sizable buyout packages we’ve seen yet. We do wonder, though, what will happen to those who’ve been offered a buyout and refuse to take it — it is, after all, a one-time-only deal. We wish those affected at Skadden Arps the best of luck, whether they choose to remain at the firm and tempt fate or choose to take the money and run.

If your firm is reducing the ranks of its lawyers or staff, whether through open layoffs or stealth layoffs or voluntary buyouts, let us know. You can email us or text us (646-820-8477). Thanks.

Earlier: Prior ATL coverage of voluntary Biglaw buyouts

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