Tides come in three sets. So does big law firm misery.
First, associate and staff layoffs, decreases in partner compensation and pulled associate offers and deferrals.
Second, office closings and other more dramatic trimmings. The esteemed Weil Gotshal is on the leading edge of this wave, announcing today it is closing its Austin office in December (its lease there is up for renewal next year). The office has one partner, patent litigator Kevin Kudlac, who will relocate to Houston; the 16 associates and 11 staff are also being offered relocation. (And can we just note: NICE leverage – 1:27?!?!.)
Anyway, Weil’s chairman, Stephen Dannhauser, drew the straw on making the announcement, which was reported at abovethelaw.com. http://abovethelaw.com/2009/06/weil_gotshal_closes_its_austin.php The office had been open since 2003. Weil still has offices in Austin and Dallas.
The third wave? Dissolutions and forced mergers. That’s not likely to be Weil’s problem.