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Wake Up Call: Finnegan Grabs Baker McKenzie IP Team in Munich

Nov. 9, 2021, 1:32 PM

In today’s column, Kirkland & Ellis looks to be in line to get a $200 million fee for its years of work on a dispute between chemical companies; King & Spalding’s London lawyers can continue to work remotely from home, but staff have to come into the office at least two days per week; President Biden’s nominee for New Jersey U.S. attorney disclosed $2.7 million in partnership income at Greenberg Traurig.

  • Leading off, Washington-based intellectual property firm Finnegan said via email that it is hiring a team of seven IP lawyers and legal professionals to open its new office in Munich, Germany, in January 2022. The team will be led by litigator Jochen Herr, who heads Baker McKenzie’s German patent office and is admitted as a German and European patent attorney. Finnegan said Munich is a key location for patent litigation in areas such as technology, biotechnology, and pharmaceuticals. The firm, which already has an office in London, called Munich a “natural next step” in the firm’s European expansion. (Finnegan)
  • White & Case hiked its London junior lawyers’ pay to 140,000 pounds ($190,271) in the latest salvo in U.S. firms’ competition for talent in the city. (Global Legal Post); also in London, King & Spalding is requiring support staff to work in-office at least two days per week, but partners and other fee-earners can continue working remotely for now. The Atlanta-based firm, which is planning a “phased return” in London, has leased an extra floor in its building in the city to accommodate the 16 lawyers it has added there since the Covid-19 lockdown began, a report says. (U.K. Legal Week)
  • A Washington-based WilmerHale counsel said he’s leaving the firm because of its Covid-19 vaccine mandate. (Above The Law)

Lawyers, Law Firms

  • Paul Hastings advised Mark Cuban-backed legal and regulatory data platform FiscalNote on its $1.3 billion go-public merger with special purpose acquisition company Duddell Street Acquisition Corp. Davis Polk & Wardwell advised Duddell. Shearman & Sterling is advising Citi and J.P. Morgan. (Fiscal Note) (Artificial Lawyer)
  • Kirkland & Ellis looks likely to reap a $200 million fee for its work on huge breach-of-contract lawsuit between chemical companies, according to a report. (American Lawyer)
  • President Biden’s nomination for New Jersey U.S. attorney, Greenberg Traurig’s global litigation practice co-chair Philip R. Sellinger, disclosed that he earned nearly $2.7 million in partner income at the firm since last year. (Reuters) Biden’s “controversial” nomination for comptroller of currency for the U.S. Treasury Department, former Davis Polk lawyer Saule Omarova, disclosed earning $291,629 as a Cornell Law School professor. (

Laterals, Moves, In-house

  • Cravath, Swaine & Moore tax partner Kara Mungovan is headed to Davis Polk & Wardwell as a partner in New York, effective in mid-November, according to a report. She’s Davis Polk’s second New York tax lateral in a couple of weeks; Eversheds Sutherland hired former Jenner & Block New York restructuring and bankruptcy practice chair, Patrick J. Trostle, to lead its distressed debt and special situations fund group and a partner in its global energy practice group. He arrives from Moses & Singer; DLA Piper grabbed Kirkland investment funds, private equity lawyer Ken Muller as a partner based in Northern California. (
  • Sidley Austin brought in transactional labor and employment attorney Cathryn Le Regulski as a partner in Washington. She arrives from DLA Piper; K&L Gates recruited a former legislative director in U.S. Congress, Matthew Manning, as a public policy and law senior associate; Beveridge & Diamond recruited former D.C federal prosecutor Alyse Constantinide as environmental crimes defense principal in Washington. (
  • Womble Bond Dickinson added corporate and cross-border transactions lawyer Wilka Toppins in Houston as a partner. She’s been a trial attorney at ExxonMobil, executive at Macy’s, Inc., and arrived recently from Baker Donelson, where she was of counsel; Kelley Drye hired a former Texas associate deputy attorney general, Paul Singer, as a partner in Austin in its state attorneys general group. (

Legal Education

  • With law school applications up sharply, admissions officials are rejecting more applicants with “strong” scores on the Law School Admission Test than they did in previous years, according to a survey. (ABA Journal)

To contact the correspondent on this story: Rick Mitchell in Paris at

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Chris Opfer in New York at; Darren Bowman at

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