Pitney Hardin

Were the layoffs at Weil Gotshal the start of a Biglaw trend? You be the judge. In the days and weeks after the Weil winnowing, Jones Day “eliminated” about 65 staff positions, Goodwin Procter shuttered its San Diego office, 16 secretaries were the victims of “reductions” at Winston & Strawn, WilmerHale allegedly conducted stealth attorney layoffs in its IP litigation department, and Davis Polk offered support staff some beautiful buyouts. Heck, even LexisNexis and BARBRI decided to get into the layoffs game.

Today, just as we roll into the weekend, we’ve got even more layoff news. One of the biggest law firms in Connecticut, one that last conducted layoffs at the start of the recession, is handing out walking papers to as many as 40 of its attorneys and staff members. Which firm, and why?

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new jersey strong survive above the law atl.JPGIn the wake of the Dewey/Orrick and Thelen Reid/Brown Raysman announcements, here’s news of yet another law firm merger. But this one is a bit smaller than the last two:

One of New Jersey’s oldest and largest firms, Pitney Hardin, is merging with Connecticut’s biggest, Day, Berry & Howard, to create a 395-lawyer power with branches ranging from Boston to Washington, D.C.

The new firm, to be known as Day Pitney, will come into being at year end.

The amalgamation reflects both firms’ need to compete in a market that is becoming increasingly regional, in which practices restricted to individual states can no longer thrive. It mirrors similar moves by McCarter & English, which has joined with practices in Hartford and Boston.

One of you wasn’t so sure Above the Law would deign to cover this:

It’s not really so newsworthy for your site, because New Jersey and Connecticut firms can never really be Big Firms, no matter how many people they stick in their New York offices, and even if they hold hands together to become a larger firm. But as an alum of one of the two firms, I was moved and figured you should know.

But we HAVE written about the merger, because we DO care (and we hail from the Garden State). We’re just a little late, that’s all — the news broke on Wednesday.
To atone for our tardiness, we pass along an insider’s detailed analysis of the Day Berry/Pitney Hardin merger. Check it out, after the jump.

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