There has been a lot going on at WilmerHale recently. Summer associates are coming, regular associates are “transitioning.” The uncertainty has made some WilmerHale alumni who are currently clerking wonder if they can return to the firm when their clerkships end.
Above the Law has received reports from current clerks who were expecting to be hired back by WilmerHale after their clerkships are over. Some tipsters report that WilmerHale has decided not to rehire any of its former associates who took a year off to clerk. We know that many clerks are worried about being in a similar situation, so we asked WilmerHale clarify its position on rehiring clerks. The firm gave us this response:
All former summer associates who received an offer and then went on to clerk after graduation from law school have been invited to join the firm as associates. The firm, however, does not tell associates who leave for a clerkship that they can return after their clerkships are complete; rather, former associates must reapply to the firm, and we have not historically given offers of employment to all former associates at the conclusion of their clerkships. This year, we extended offers to some but not all of the former associates who inquired about returning; in addition, we have hired a small number of very promising judicial clerks who had not previously been with the firm.
So, if you clerk before you start at the firm, you are golden. But if you worked for a couple of years and then decided to clerk, best of luck.
Despite the difficulties clerks are facing when trying to get back into the Biglaw market, there are still many people who want to cool their heels as a clerk. One deferred incoming WilmerHale associate was so happy to receive a clerkship that the firm posted his gushing thanks on its internal website.
More details after the jump.