Reed Smith, Loeb & Loeb Move to Fully Reverse Pandemic Pay Cuts

Oct. 22, 2020, 9:48 PM

Reed Smith and Loeb & Loeb are the latest in a line of Big Law firms to fully restore austerity cuts to pay, including to partner draws, made during the earlier months of the coronavirus pandemic.

Reed Smith said Thursday in a statement from its global managing partner, Sandy Thomas, that it would bring back 100% of draws to equity partners as well as full monthly compensation for fixed share partners, counsel, and associates.

Thomas attributed the decision to restore pay Nov. 1 to the “incredibly hard work, shared sacrifice and commitment of our people.”

Many Big Law firms that pivoted to austerity measures in the spring and summer to preserve cash flow amid a turbulent economy have now reversed their moves in part or in full.

Loeb & Loeb Chair Kenneth Florin said in an email to the firm shared with Bloomberg Law that Loeb & Loeb “continues to outperform our initial financial projections for the pandemic,” which has led to the decision to eliminate reductions for attorneys, paralegals and staff and restore partner draws retroactive to Oct.1.

Both Reed Smith and Loeb & Loeb had done partial rollbacks of their cuts recently.

On Oct. 1, according to Thursday’s statement, Reed Smith reduced from 15% to 5% its monthly compensation cuts for fixed share partners, counsel, and associates. At the time, it also eliminated the 5% monthly cuts it had made to the pay of professional staff making over $100,000 and restored secretaries and other staff who had reduced hours back to full working time.

Loeb & Loeb on Sept.1 rolled back its initial cuts by 60%. The firm had cut pay in the spring for income partners, senior counsel, of counsel, associates, and senior staff by 15% and for paralegals and other staff by 10%.

To contact the reporter on this story: Rebekah Mintzer in New York at rmintzer@bloomberglaw.com

To contact the editor responsible for this story: John Crawley at jcrawley@bloomberglaw.com

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