Pay Cuts, Layoffs, and More: How Law Firms Are Managing the Pandemic

All second-year summer associates will receive job offers following their graduation in 2021, while first-year summer associates will be invited to take part in the firm’s summer 2021 student program. Hogan Lovells is also delaying the start date for U.S. first-year associates from October 2020 to January 2021 in response to most state bar exams being shifted from the summer to the fall.

Holland & Hart

The Denver-based firm implemented compensation cuts [32]at the start of June. These included reductions to equity partner distributions that exceed the 15% cuts for all non-equity salaried attorneys. Staffers earning over $100,000 are subject to 7.5% cuts, while those earning over $60,000 are receiving 5% cuts. The firm may dial back these reductions at any point based on its financial performance, a firm spokeswoman said.

Holland & Knight

In a statement May 8[33], the firm said it is furloughing some staff and cutting pay for most lawyers and staff. Partner draws have been reduced by an average of 25%, and higher paid partners will absorb a higher reduction. Associates, counsel and senior professionals will see their salaries reduced by 17.5%. Staff who earn more than $150,000 annually will see a 15% pay cut; staff who earn between $75,000 and $150,000 will absorb a 10% cut. Staff making less than $75,000 will not be impacted.

Holland & Knight would not say how many staff members have been furloughed, adding that the decision on which employees to furlough was determined by whether remote working “precluded or limited the firm from utilizing the staff members.” Furloughed staff will continue to receive their benefits.

Hughes Hubbard & Reed

The Am Law 200 firm on July 7 confirmed[34] it had laid off an undisclosed number of attorneys and staff, even after it received a multi-million Paycheck Protection Program loan.  The firm said the PPP loan money was used for its intended purpose, “to save jobs during the worst of the crisis.” But more than three months later, the firm said, it felt the “deep impact” from court closures and a slowdown in deal activity, and the firm made “difficult decisions on staffing to address the current environment.”

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