David Lat is the founder and managing editor of Above the Law. His writing has also appeared in the New York Times, the Washington Post, the Wall Street Journal, the New York Observer, Washingtonian magazine, and New York magazine. Prior to ATL, David worked as a federal prosecutor in Newark, New Jersey; a litigation associate at Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz, in New York; and a law clerk to Judge Diarmuid F. O'Scannlain, of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. David graduated from Harvard College and Yale Law School, where he served as book reviews editor of the Yale Law Journal. David has received several awards for his work on ATL, including recognition as an ABA Journal Legal Rebel, a group of innovators within the legal profession, and inclusion as a member of the Fastcase 50, "the fifty most interesting, provocative, and courageous leaders in the world of law, scholarship, and legal technology." You can connect with him on Facebook or follow him on Twitter.
Earlier this month, rumors about possible layoffs at Latham & Watkins were making the rounds. We alluded to them briefly here (also noting the firm’s denial).
We continue to get asked about this gossip, though, so we’ve done a little poking around. Sources at LW report that layoff rumors have been circulating, but that they aren’t true — at least not yet. From one source:
The LW layoff rumors are untrue as far as I know. Nobody I know has been laid off. [But] things are very slow, and they have 50+ summers still to come [on board as permanent associates]. I think this is confined to New York, though; the rest of the offices seem plenty busy.
That’s consistent with what we’ve been hearing: no layoffs, but lots of slowness. Another LW source reports that the firm’s Washington office is “on pace” for everyone to hit 1900 hours, that Los Angeles is at about 95 percent, and that New York is “sucking wind” at 90 percent.
Internally, here’s how the firm has been dealing with the gossip:
We got a few days of nervous jokes about how layoffs weren’t imminent: “We’ll wait until Christmas…” Then we got an unequivocal denial at Latham’s First Year Academy this past weekend.
More discussion, including a guess as to the genesis of this gossip, after the jump.
After the jump, you’ll see six photographs of Sullivan & Cromwell bonsai trees. Some of these pics have been previously featured in these pages, and some are new. Based on subtle differences between the plants, it appears that S&C may be using different florists around the country to disseminate these gifts to its offerees.
We will now hold a bonsai beauty contest, allowing you to vote for your favorite example of S&C bonsai porn. The differences in the photos are interesting. Just like real pornography, some bonsai porn aims to titillate, some aspires to art, and some just looks fuzzy and low-budget.
Check out the bonsai pics, and cast your vote, after the jump.
Several commenters to our recent post about the University of Miami law student who got benchslapped on the People’s Court pointed out another news development involving the law school: the recent arrest and arraignment of a popular professor, D. Marvin Jones, on a misdemeanor charge of soliciting a prostitute. See here:
Check out his bio (which rather pretentiously describes Professor Jones as a “public intellectual”). He teaches Criminal Procedure, of all things. If there’s any technical defect in his arrest, we’re sure the good professor will be able to get himself off.
Professor Jones: If you’re looking to score some ass, why not stick to the U. Miami student body? At least they won’t charge.
Alas, we don’t have the dirty details of this incident. If you know more, please email us. Thanks.
And no, we’re not talking about their tough new standards for associate reviews, which have resulted in what might be called “soft layoffs” (and which we’ll be writing more about soon — we’ve received lots of great info after yesterday’s post).
We’re speaking more literally about Law & Order at Kirkland & Ellis. Check out this email from about an hour ago, which went out to the entire New York office:
From: Carolyn Marino Sent: 10/17/2007 09:47 AM EDT To: #NY All Personnel Subject: Law & Order Filming Today
If you are on the 39th or 43rd floor today, you will notice that parts of the office are being used for filming. The television show Law & Order is using the office to film several scenes. This morning, they are working in the northeast corner of the 39th floor, and this afternoon they will film in Conference Room 43A.
I think of the show as the home-town TV show, since they film almost every day at locations everywhere in the city. So it’s exciting that now they are here. We don’t know when the episode will air that is filmed
here, but we will be sure to let everybody know when the show is scheduled.
We’re going to liveblog the Senate Judiciary Committee confirmation hearings for the nomination of Michael Mukasey as Attorney General. We don’t know how long we’ll do this; it will depend upon how interesting the proceedings are. And they might not be that interesting, since Mukasey’s confirmation isn’t really in doubt.
But who knows? Maybe there will be some interesting fireworks, as the Democrats try to use the hearings to score political points. Here we go.
10:03: Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VT) calls the session to order. He warns that people who demonstrate within the hearing room with be thrown out. Good for him — those people are so annoying.
10:06: Senator Leahy reads his introductory remarks. He criticizes Alberto Gonzales’s tenure as Attorney General and pats himself on the back for having voted against Gonzales’s confirmation as AG.
10:16: Opening statement by Sen. Arlen Specter (R-PA). Snazzy lime green tie. He mentions that he’ll have to step out during the hearings because of another hearing held by a committee where he is ranking member.
10:18: Sen. Leahy notes that the nominee will be introduced by Senator Lieberman, who was Judge Mukasey’s law school classmate, and Sen. Schumer.
10:19: Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) introduces Judge Mukasey. Warm words. Senator Schumer’s admiration for Judge Mukasey, whom he floated once as a possible Supreme Court nominee, is well-known. But it’s still remarkable to see Chuck Schumer speaking so warmly about a Bush Administration nominee — in front of cameras, no less.
More after the jump.
We live in a rapidly changing economy; these are dynamic times for the legal profession. But we still can’t help but be surprised at how quickly talk has turned from associate pay raises to associate layoffs.
Just a few short months ago, “NY to 190″ seemed just around the corner. Today, even though we still hear stray rumors of pay raises — so we’re not ruling anything out, who knows what might happen — recently we’ve been hearing more about possible layoffs. We’ll pass along such rumors in this new feature, Nationwide Layoff Watch.
Today the gossip is swirling about the Chicago office of Kirkland & Ellis. More details, after the jump.
In case you haven’t noticed, we’ve been experiencing technical difficulties around here (due to unusually high site traffic today). We’ve actually been trying to post new material for a while, but without success until now. Tech folks are investigating the problems, and hopefully things will return to normal shortly.
We’re now pleased to bring the second half of our interview with Adam Key, the Regent Law School second-year student who has found himself in a bit of hot water. Background on the controversy, a free-speech dispute between Key and the Regent administration, is available here and here.
The first part of our interview with Adam Key is accessible here. The balance of the interview — in which Adam Key reveals his professional wrestling nickname, talks about his new book, and discusses his Regent sister, Monica Goodling — appears after the jump.
Damages sought for wrong color wedding flowers: $400,000.
Being delinquent in your attorney registration, while filing a public lawsuit on your own behalf: Priceless
It appears to be true. From the New York State Attorney Registration site:
Maybe Elana Glatt should spend more time attending CLE courses and less time suing florists. We recommend the City Bar class on Service, Therapy, & Emotional Support Animals (which we once sat through, even though it had nothing to do with our practice, ’cause we were desperate for CLE credits).
But Elana “Party Pants” Glatt, predictably dubbed “Bridezilla” by many of you, has her defenders. Read on, after the jump.
Looking for a way to earn some brownie points? Wish your boss a happy National Boss Day!
Yes, that’s right. Today is National Boss Day. Here’s some history:
• Began in 1958 when Patricia Bays Haroski, then an employee at State Farm Insurance Company in Deerfield, Ill., registered the holiday with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.
• Ms. Haroski chose October 16, her father’s birthday, as the date for National Boss Day because she felt he was an exemplary boss.
• National Boss Day has become an international celebration in recent years and now is observed in countries such a England, Australia and South Africa.
So secretaries, make sure the coffee you fetch today is piping hot. Associates, put your heart into that document review.
And answer the phone on the second ring when the assigning partner calls you at 6:30 PM. Since today is National Boss Day, it’s the least you can do. National Boss Day 2007 [Hallmark]
Ed. note: The Asia Chronicles column is authored by Kinney Recruiting. Kinney has made more placements of U.S. associates, counsels and partners in Asia than any other recruiting firm in each of the past six years. You can reach them by email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
We currently have a very exciting and rare type of in-house opening in China at one of the world’s leading internet and social media companies. Our client is looking for an IP Transactional / TMT / Licensing attorney with 2 to 6 years experience. The new hire will be based in Shenzhen or Shanghai. Mandarin is not required (deal documentation will be in English) but is preferred. A solid reason to be in China and a commitment to that market is required of course. This new hire will likely be US qualified (but could also be qualified in UK or other jurisdictions) and with experience and training at a top law firm’s IP transactional / TMT practice and could be currently at a law firm or in-house. Qualified candidates currently Asia based, Europe based or US based will be considered. The new hire’s supervisors in this technology transactions in-house team are very well regarded US trained IP transactional lawyers, with substantial experience at Silicon Valley firms. The culture and atmosphere in this in-house group and the company in general is entrepreneurial, team oriented, and the work is cutting edge, even for a cutting edge industry. The upside of being in an important strategic in-house position in this fast growing and world leading internet company is of the “sky is the limit” variety. Its a very exciting place to be in China for a rising IP transactional lawyer in our opinion, for many reasons beyond the basic info we can share here in this ad / post. This is a special A+ opportunity.
If you think most legal technology misses the mark, LexisNexis Firm Manager® wants to change your mind. Read more about it here.
Built with input from hundreds of solo and small-firm attorneys across the country, it’s made for practitioners who’d rather build the firm of their dreams than deal with the hassles of running a business.
· Go Mobile, Stay Connected.
See all your firm’s information, wherever you are, on whatever device you’re using. Access and update client files, enter billing, search & share documents and more. It’s just like you’re in the office, only you’re not.
When Chintan Panchal decided to leave a global BigLaw partnership to start his own firm, he could only hope that he would face the high-quality problem of firm building that many had cautioned him about. Focused on the uncertainty surrounding of a new firm launch, he decided to tackle staffing needs, IT challenges, and financial planning requirements after he had built up his legal practice.
Panchal Associates LLP–a corporate/finance and outside general counsel boutique–was quickly off to a great start. Clients and matters were flying in the door, and Chintan soon had a team of lawyers and staff with a variety of operational needs. To continue building an excellent team and provide them with a competitive benefits package, to expand his physical presence to include a European practice and additional partners, and to scale his operations and IT capabilities to support this growing enterprise brought with it demands of time, money, and expertise. Chintan knew he needed help.
“With the assistance of NexFirm, we have upgraded the capabilities of our firm to meet, and in some cases exceed, the standards we were used to at our former BigLaw firms. Operationally, we can now attract and service clients we didn’t have the bandwidth to support in the past, and continue to build our team with the best and brightest legal talent in the industry,” said Chintan Panchal, adding “It has worked out quite well in our case; NexFirm is an essential partner for us.”
The traditional job application and interview process can be impersonal, and applicants often struggle to present themselves as more than just the sum of their GPAs, alma maters, and previous work history. ATL has partnered with ViewYou to help job seekers overcome this challenge. ViewYou NOW Profiles offer a unique way for job seekers to make a personal, memorable connection with prospective employers: introduction videos. These videos allow job candidates to display their personalities, interpersonal skills, and professional interests, creating an eDossier to brand themselves to potential employers all over the world. Check it out today!