Jenner has gone to $160,000 for first years in its Chicago, DC, and Dallas offices. The NY office will remain at $160,000. More senior classes will be determined and communicated individually. The raise was communicated this morning by individual memoranda and is effective August 1, 2007.
Remember those Bingham McCutchen associates who took buyouts and left the firm? They’re royally p.o.’ed about this article, and they want to set The Record[er] straight about the circumstances surrounding their departures.
Check out their angry letter to The Recorder, plus additional information from an ATL tipster concerning how these buyouts were mishandled, after the jump.
Yesterday we declared ourselves “all Jenner-ed out.” But based on the comments and emails we’ve received, it seems people are still interested in hearing about Jenner & Block.
We have a little more to offer you. A second source confirms what we previously reported:
Your post about yesterday’s meeting was accurate. [Managing partner Gregory Gallopoulos] went through 3 areas: (1) associate compensation (expect a raise announcement later this week), (2) financial health of the firm (doing great, regardless of the temporary slowdown in litigation), and (3) the partner de-equitizations (no further waves of de-equitizations are expected).
And we’re pleased to report that rumors of an Above the Law shout-out are apparently true:
Greg mentioned that since so many people have sent him links to ATL, he’s become somewhat of an ATL aficionado.
For those of you who are still interested — maybe there are a handful of you — there’s a little more after the jump.
In our recent New York Times op-ed piece on Supreme Court clerkship bonuses, we argued that “[f]rom a narrowly economic point of view — focusing on the actual work the clerks will perform, and setting aside the law firms’ quest for prestige and bragging rights — it is difficult to understand why firms fight for the right to shower 26-year-olds with cash.”
One of the contentions we thought about offering in support of this claim was that Supreme Court clerks don’t stick around their law firms for very long after getting their huge bonuses. This was our sense of things, based admittedly on “anec-data.” It seemed to us that SCOTUS clerks go to law firms, stay for maybe two years, and then leave to become law professors, or government or public interest lawyers.
But then we decided to go back and look at the data. We thought it would be interesting to see how many Supreme Court clerks from October Term 2002 and October Term 2003 are still in private practice. The OT 2002 and OT 2003 clerk classes were ideal for the purpose of assessing the effect of bonuses because (1) law firms were offering gargantuan bonuses by this point in time, and (2) enough years have passed to allow for meaningful assessment of the clerks’ career paths.
We undertook this research, and it ended up showing that a reasonably high percentage of clerks — about 50 percent — are in private practice, a few years down the road. It’s not an overwhelmingly high percentage (in which case our argument that the firms effectively subsidize other quarters of the profession would be undermined). But it’s also not as low as we expected. We revised our argument accordingly, omitting any suggestion that a majority of clerks “take the money and run.”
Anyway, having done all this research, we felt like we should put it to some use (since it ended up not being reflected in the final version of the op-ed piece). Posting it on ATL seemed worthwhile enough.
Are you curious about what Supreme Court clerks from a few years ago are up to nowadays? Check out the lists, after the jump. The Supreme Court’s Bonus Babies [New York Times]
Now some of you might be saying, “Delaware — WTF???” But if that’s your reaction, you don’t know very much about corporate law.
Delaware is, after all, our nation’s capital of corporate law. Numerous top corporations are chartered in Delaware, and the state’s Chancery Court hears some of the biggest-ticket corporate cases around.
So what do law firm associates in Delaware earn these days? We received some helpful information from a tipster:
“Skadden and Fish & Richardson pay NYC market. At Skadden, at least, that includes an NYC market bonus.”
That’s just the tip of the iceberg. Detailed salary charts for local firms, plus your comments, appear after the jump.
A Washington Post article about members of Congress trying to live on $21 a week — the average amount food stamp recipients receive as income supplements — features a source you wouldn’t expect to see quoted in such a piece:
Rick Hindle, executive chef for the Skadden, Arps law firm in Washington, showed recently that you don’t have to spend hours in the kitchen to prepare healthful food for $1 or less per meal….
As part of the launch of a new USDA Web site for food stamp recipients, Hindle cooked colorful quesadillas (60 cents per serving), spinach and meat cakes with brown rice (92 cents) and orange banana frosty (52 cents)….
Hindle, who trained at the Culinary Institute of America, plans to add the quesadillas and some of the other recipes to his regular repertoire.
Yes, it’s true — we swear! This is not just another wild rumor. You can take this one to the bank!
The Bank of London, that is. From TheLawyer.com, a U.K.-based website:
Weil Gotshal & Manges’ London associates now earn more than their counterparts in New York after a 20 per cent pay hike in London.
The US-headquartered firm is now offering some of the most generous pay packets in the City with newly qualifieds (NQs) now receiving £90,000, representing a 20 per cent jump from £75,000. First-year associates who qualified in September 2006 will receive an average of £95,000.
If you enter the figure of £90,000 into this currency converter, you get the sum of $178,441, based on the current exchange rate. And Weil isn’t even the most high-paying firm in the city:
This puts Weil towards the top of the market in terms of US firms in London. Latham & Watkins still offers NQs the most, with £96,000, and Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton offers them £92,000.
Latham’s salary of £96,000 for new lawyers translates into $190,341. Cleary’s £92,000 comes out to $182,411.
So should U.S. associates pack it all in and jump across the pond? Or does London’s high cost of living, plus the crappy food — Gordon Ramsay and good Indian joints notwithstanding — make the move not worth it?
Feel free to discuss associate compensation in London in the comments. This will constitute the open thread on London and the U.K. that some of you have been asking for. Thanks! Update: This is kind of random, but click here for Google Maps directions from New York to London. We especially like step #21. Further Update: A reader notes that if you get recruited by your firm’s New York office for a London position, you could do even better. More details after the jump. Weil Gotshal ups NQ pay to £90k [TheLawyer.com] Weil Gotshal Newly Qualified Lawyers Earning A Bundle More [LawFuel] Universal Currency Converter [XE.com]
We’re beginning to wonder whether this “NY to 190″ business is just a big practical joke. But even though no real information has emerged, and the co-chair of Simpson’s personnel committee told us his firm is “not currently considering an increase in associate salaries,” the rumors continue to swirl.
Here are two email messages we’ve received that are representative of many others:
“NYC big firm starting salary may be increasing to $190k in the coming weeks. My source was a recruiter whose friend at Sidley told him the news. Have you all heard anything or is this bs?”
“[A] friend of mine, who is a partner at a big Chicago firm, with a large presence in NYC, mentioned that pay raises are likely in NYC and that the firm has budgeted $190k as the starting first-year salary.”
Such gossip is not far removed from this commenter’s parody:
My dad’s step-mom’s estranged aunt is a janitor at Cravath, and she said she found a scribbled note on the floor of a partner’s office saying “damn, looks like we have to go to at least $175k soon; call wife re: can’t add second pool to home in Nantucket this summer.”
We wish we had more to tell you right now. We’ll continue to dig.
But at this point, your guess is as good as ours. So feel speculate to discuss in the comments. Vote in our reader polls, if you haven’t done so already.
Will any of this chatter make associate pay raises happen — or happen faster? Unlikely. But hey, there are worse ways to pass the time.
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 seven years. You can reach them by email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please note that Evan Jowers and Robert Kinney are still in Hong Kong and will stay FOR THE REMAINDER OF THIS WEEK. We still have a handful of available slots for meetings with our Asia Chronicles fans. If we have not been in touch lately, reach out and let us know when we could meet! There is no need for an agenda at all. Most of our in-person meetings on these trips are with folks who understand that improving a legal practice through lateral hiring is an information-driven process that takes time to handle correctly.
Regarding trends in lateral US associate hiring in Hong Kong, we of course keep much of what we know off of this blog. Based on placement revenue, though, Kinney is having one of our most successful years ever in Asia. We are helping a number of our law firm clients with M&A, fund formation, cap markets, project finance, FCPA and disputes openings. These are very specific needs in many cases, so a conversation with us before jumping in may be helpful. As always, we like to be sure to get the maximum number of interviews per submission, using a well-informed, highly targeted, and selective approach, taking into account short, medium and long-term career aims.
Making a well informed decision during a job search is easier said than done – the information we provide comes from 10 years of being the market leader in US attorney placements at the top tier firms in Asia. There is no substitute for having known a hiring partner since he/she was an associate or for having helped a partner grow his or her practice from zip to zooming, and this is happily where we stand today – with years of background information on just about every relevant person in all the markets we serve, and most especially in Hong Kong/China/Greater Asia. So get in touch and get a download from us this week if we can fit it in, or soon in any case!
The legal industry is being disrupted at every level by technological advances. While legal tech entrepreneurs and innovators are racing to create a more efficient and productive future, there is widespread indifference on the part of attorneys toward these emerging technologies.
When the LexisNexis Cloud Technology Survey results were reported earlier this year, it showed that attorneys were starting to peer less skeptically into the future, and slowly but surely leaning more toward all the benefits the law cloud has to offer.
Because let’s face it, plenty of attorneys are perhaps a bit too comfortable with their “system” of practice management, which may or may not include neon highlighters, sticky notes, dog-eared file folders, and a word processing program that was last updated when the term “raise the roof” was still de rigueur.