Earlier this week, we asked readers to submit possible captions for this photo:
Let’s have a look at what our readers came up with, and then vote on the finalists….
As we mentioned last week, the American Lawyer recently released its highly influential, closely watched Am Law 100 law firm rankings. And despite all the doom and gloom permeating the legal profession, as well as the stagnant bonuses for associates lucky enough to make it into Biglaw, partners at large law firms are living just as large as ever.
In a way, the recovery in Biglaw is not unlike the recovery in America in general. If you were already well-off, you’re doing great now. It’s just not trickling down to anybody else. See, e.g., anemic spring bonuses.
Interestingly enough, the division of the world into “haves and have-nots” continues even into the world of major law firms. Partners at super-top-tier firms are putting even more distance between themselves and partners at less high-powered or less profitable firms.
Let’s look at the numbers, shall we?
If you consider Sullivan & Cromwell’s Spring Tip as if it were a real tip on a meal that cost $160,000, S&C tipped at .6%. Not 6%, but .6%.
Cravath Swaine & Moore should be able to match that if every partner at the firm went home and shook the loose change out of their couches.
So, I’m not even going to ask if they’ll match. That’s a pathetic question. I’m going to ask if Cravath will beat the S&C spring bonus.
I mean, it’s not hard. S&C has set the bar so low that Cravath can crawl over it. For the love of God, I’ll get a better “spring bonus” from Breaking Media than S&C associates are getting.
If Cravath moves, we can assume S&C will follow….
Lat here. In late March, I wrote a story with this title: “Sullivan & Cromwell Will Pay Spring Bonuses — But Will They Be Too Small To Be Worth Matching?”
I’m sad to report that my prediction has come to pass. Sullivan & Cromwell has announced spring bonuses, but they’re nothing to write home about. They are probably too modest for other firms to bother matching. The spring bonuses of Quinn Emanuel will surely exceed the S&C amounts.
Sullivan promised spring bonuses in its 2011 year-end bonus memo, and it reiterated that promise on subsequent occasions. But the powers that be at S&C never said anything as to amounts, leading some to forecast wimpy payouts.
So how much are we talking about? Let’s find out, and get some color commentary from my colleague, Elie Mystal….
UPDATE (4:20 PM): We’re continuing to update this post. Go after the jump and refresh.
It’s time to crown February’s Lawyer of the Month. Yes, we realize that it’s a little late to be conducting a poll for February, but we’d still like to give our candidates a chance to extend their 15 minutes of fame (or infamy).
Last month, we saw some wacky antics from judges and former Biglaw associates, and some lawyering that has the potential to rock the world of legal education for the rest of time.
That being said, let’s check out our nominees for the month of February….
And, unfortunately, some of these critters have crept into company canteens. Thanks to New York City’s controversial system of rating restaurants, in which establishments receive letter grades based on their health and sanitation violations (or lack thereof), we know which law firm cafeterias are worth patronizing (and which ones are best avoided).
Let’s take a look at which Biglaw behemoths have the best — and the buggiest — dining rooms….
* Lawyers at this Biglaw firm may learn a thing or two about respecting their elders later this week. Kelley Drye is close to settling an age discrimination suit filed by Eugene D’Ablemont, one of its many de-equitized partners. [Wall Street Journal]
* Well, this could definitely be one of the reasons why Cravath hasn’t given out any spring bonuses to associates yet this year. They probably had to spend all of their money to clean up their allegedly fly-infested cafeteria. [Am Law Daily]
* Women in Virginia will now be able to politely decline their pre-abortion transvaginal ultrasounds in favor of abdominal ones. Oh, how nice! Look at that, girls, we totally won the war on women. [CBS News]
* Things Dharun Ravi texted to Tyler Clementi on the night the latter committed suicide? “I’ve known you were gay and I have no problem with it.” Of course you knew, you watched his sexual encounters via webcam. [CNN]
When it comes to year-end bonuses, Cravath traditionally leads, and everyone else follows. But when it comes to spring bonuses, which we’ve all been eagerly anticipating, the usual first mover is Sullivan & Cromwell.
So why are we now hearing word of spring bonuses over at 825 Eighth Avenue? What the heck is going on?
Yesterday, a former Cravath associate had his law license suspended for three years by a New York court. For several years now, the young former associate has been dealing with some serious legal troubles.
Michael Zulandt was a Cravath associate in New York (we mentioned the story earlier today in Morning Docket). In 2008, he pleaded guilty to third-degree misdemeanor assault charges stemming from a domestic violence incident with an ex-girlfriend. The incident sounds like it was a pretty serious fight.
Keep reading to learn more about our (suspended) Lawyer of the Day’s crime and punishment….