Wake Up Call: Loeb & Loeb Joins Exits in Britney Spears Case

July 7, 2021, 12:13 PM

In today’s column, mining giant Rio Tinto hired a new legal department leader; K&L Gates opened a Luxembourg office by merging with a local firm and got an IP team from DLA Piper in Tokyo; three more firms announced pay hikes for associates.

  • Leading off, L.A.-based probate lawyer Samuel Ingham III, who has earned close $3 million representing Britney Spears in the conservatorship that has run her life since 2008, asked to withdraw from her case, as did Loeb & Loeb, the firm Ingham hired for assistance. They’re the latest professionals to seek to exit Spears’ case after the pop singer told a judge her conservatorship arrangement is abusive, the Times reports. Spears is reportedly obligated to pay for lawyers on both sides of the case, including opposing counsel. (NYT)
  • K&L Gates said it added an eighth European office, and 46th worldwide, by combining with Luxembourg firm Volckrick & Associates, effective July 1. Partner Mathieu Volckrick, counsel Jan Boeing, and associate Adam Paschalidis focus on asset management, investment funds, real estate, and private equity; K&L Gates also said its Tokyo, Japan office added former Hitachi patent lawyer Mitsuhiro Imamura as an intellectual property partner. He arrives with a team of paralegals from DLA Piper. (KLGates.com)
  • Winston & Strawn, which already matched the Milbank scale for associate pay raises, said it’s moving up to the higher Davis Polk scale, which goes from $205,000 to $365,000, depending on class year. It also gave more details on its bonuses for high billers; Vedder Price announced bonuses and pay hikes to be paid in 2022; and K&L Gates gave more details about its pay raises, which associates are finding out about “individually” via email. (Above the Law)

Lawyers, Law Firms

  • The Biden administration’s nominee for ambassador to Mexico, Kenneth Salazar, disclosed he took in $3.49 million from his partnership share at WilmerHale for a recent 15-month period. (National Law Journal)
  • Manhattan federal Judge William Pauley III, who presided over the 2018 guilty plea and sentencing of former Trump lawyer Michael Cohen, died Tuesday at age 68. (New York Law Journal)
  • The American Bar Association’s president slammed a former law partner’s recent essay that argues that women lawyers don’t do enough to boost their careers, in particular women who “lose focus” because of motherhood. (ABA Journal)

Laterals, Moves, In-house

  • Paul, Weiss got back former federal prosecutor and trial lawyer Joshua Hill, who was at the firm earlier in his career. Hill, joining as a partner in the firm’s San Francisco and New York offices, arrives from Morrison & Foerster, where he was a white collar defense & commercial litigation partner; William Levi, former chief of staff to ex-Attorney General William Barr, is returning to Sidley Austin as a litigation partner in Washington. He was an associate at the firm earlier in his career. (Sidley.com)
  • Kirkland & Ellis grabbed “rising star” M&A and private equity lawyer Brittany Sakowitz from Vinson & Elkins as a corporate partner in Houston. Kirkland also got litigator Candice Andalia as a partner in Washington. Andalia was previously at Orrick in New York; Greenspoon Marder expanded its cannabis law practice in Chicago, grabbing four partners and one of counsel from Locke Lord. Greenspoon also appointed Colorado-based partner Nick Richards to chair the cannabis group, replacing Rachel Gillette, who left for Holland & Hart in late June with a three lawyer team. (GMLaw.com)
  • Squire Patton Boggs added corporate lawyer Vladimir Zenin as a partner in Moscow. Zenin arrives with a three-associate team from CMS Russia, where he led the Russia M&A practice, and was previously at Allen & Overy; Cozen O’Connor hired commercial litigator Kaan Ekiner as a member in Wilmington, Del.; London Ashurst finTech partner Abradat Kamalpour is joining Jones Day. (LinkedIn)
  • Mining multinational Rio Tinto hired veteran industrial in-house leader Isabelle Deschamps, a former top lawyer and executive at Unilever, to be its new chief legal officer. Deschamps, currently group GC and executive counsel member at Dutch paint and coatings group AkzoNobel, replaces Barbara Levi, who recently took a job as group general counsel at UBS Group AG; Terminix, a global pest control business, hired fashion industry top lawyer Deidre Richardson as its new senior vice president and general counsel. (Corporate Counsel)

Legal Education

  • Anthony Varona stepped down as dean of University of Miami School of Law on July 1 but the controversy over his ouster continues. (Law.com)

To contact the correspondent on this story: Rick Mitchell in Paris at rMitchell@correspondent.bloomberglaw.com

To contact the editor on this story: Chris Opfer at copfer@bloomberglaw.com

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