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Wake Up Call: London Firms Face ‘Huge’ Shortage of Lawyers

Jan. 10, 2022, 1:45 PM

In today’s column, Gibson Dunn grabbed Ernst & Young vice chair and general counsel Ron Hauben to co-lead its new accounting firm practice; the U.S. legal sector shed 300 jobs in December; in-house legal leaders say remote work made progress on diversity and inclusion even tougher.

  • Leading off, London-based law firms advertised for 2,300 open jobs for associates between January and November 2021. That’s up 131% from 2020 and 37% from 2019. With demand for legal service soaring, many London firms are turning to temp firms to fill staff gaps, this report says. (Financial Times)
  • After months of growth, U.S. legal sector jobs ticked down by 300 in December 2021, new Bureau of Labor Statistics data show. The sector has recovered 87% of jobs it lost to March 2020 layoffs, a report says. (American Lawyer)
  • As omicron continues to affect court proceedings, a Brooklyn federal judge said the trial of former Goldman Sachs banker Roger Ng, charged in connection with the multibillion-dollar scandal at Malaysian state investment fund 1MDB, will be delayed until February. (New York Law Journal) In California, a federal judge proposed delaying the trial of former Thernaos COO Ramesh “Sunny” Balwani by about a month. (The Recorder)

Lawyers, Law Firms

  • Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher recruited former EY Americas vice chair and general counsel, Ron Hauben, to be co-chair of the firm’s new accounting firm advisory and defense practice. (American Lawyer)
  • General counsel and chief legal officers have gotten more hands-on dealing with company culture and employee matters, especially involving diversity and inclusion. But they haven’t accomplished much and remote work during the pandemic has made progress even tougher, a report finds. (Corporate Counsel)

Laterals, Moves, In-house

  • Blank Rome brought in Consumer Financial Protection Bureau senior counsel Andrew “Andy” Arculin as a partner in Washington. He joins from Venable, where he was chair of the financial services practice; Mayer Brown recruited former FTC fintech litigator Christopher Leach as a partner in Washington. At the Federal Trade Commission, Leach worked in the financial practices division, focusing on fintech and fair lending issues; Holland & Knight recruited Thomas J. Story, a former legislative assistant to U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), as a senior policy adviser on its lobbying team in Washington. (HKLaw.com)
  • Saul Ewing brought in securities transactions lawyer Vanessa Schoenthaler in New York as a partner; Fox Rothschild added veteran restructuring and bankruptcy lawyer Howard Cohen as a partner in Wilmington, Delaware. He arrives from Gibbons P.C. and was previously a partner at Drinker Biddle; BakerHostetler added veteran trial lawyer Ali Haque as a partner in Columbus, Ohio. He joins from Bricker & Eckler. (BakerLawcom)
  • Womble Bond Dickinson hired intellectual property trial lawyer Fabio Marino as a patent litigation partner in Silicon Valley. He joins from Polsinelli, where had served as managing partner of two offices, IP department vice chair and IP and technology group practice chair; BakerHostetler grabbed former DLA Piper real estate parter Jeff Diener, who was DLA’s San Francisco real estate team head and co-head of its global hospitality team. He joins BakerHostetler San Francisco as a business practice partner and co-leader of its national hospitality industry team; employment law firm Jackson Lewis hired Lewis Brisbois worklaw veteran Kevin M. Erwin as a principal in Riverside, Calif.; McGuireWoods recruited former New York state prosecutor, Big Law litigator Kevin Frankel, who was New York assistant attorney general, as a partner in its financial services litigation practice in San Francisco; FisherBroyles hired business trial lawyer and commercial litigator Dan McGuire as a partner Dallas. He joins from Polsinelli; Linklaters’ former firmwide managing partner, Gideon Moore, is joining NatWest Group as its chief legal officer and general counsel. (Global Legal Post)

Promotions

  • Effective Jan. 1, BakerHostetler elected 28 lawyers to partner across six practice groups and 12 U.S. offices; Withers promoted four lawyers to partner; Chicago-based Neal Gerber Eisenberg promoted four lawyers to partner; Holwell Shuster & Goldberg promoted one to partner; Seward & Kissel promoted two attorneys to partner and five to counsel; Mitchell Silberberg & Knupp elected three parters; McGlinchey Stafford boosted three of counsel to members and promoted one attorney to of counsel. (McGlinchey.com)

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

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Chris Opfer in New York at copfer@bloomberglaw.com; Darren Bowman at dbowman@bloomberglaw.com