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Wake Up Call: New Deloitte Firm Eyes German Class Action Risk

Sept. 20, 2021, 12:49 PM

In today’s column, Big Law firms are in a fierce talent war, but their overall lawyer count is flat; New York’s state inspector general became the latest ally of former Governor Andrew Cuomo to follow him out the door; as delta-variant Covid cases explode, state court leaders want remote court proceedings to continue.

  • Leading off, Deloitte Legal, the accounting giant’s legal practices arm, hooked up with German boutique Frommer Legal to start a Munich-based law firm that specializes in defending companies against class actions. The new firm, Classreaction, says German companies face a growing risk of getting hit by class actions. ( International)
  • Big Law firms, battling for talent, are hiring a lot of lawyers. But overall firms’ head count is flat and even down slightly in some market segments, a report says. “If we go and hire 10 partners, it’s very likely we will have lost a similar amount of partners,” explained one recruiting specialist. (American Lawyer)
  • As the delta variant keeps fueling Covid-19 case and death counts, state court leaders are pushing for remote court proceedings to continue, but they’re facing some resistance. (

Lawyers, Law Firms

  • New York State inspector general Letizia Tagliafierro resigned, the latest ally of former Governor Andrew Cuomo to leave the government. (NYT) The leader of New York state’s court officer union has retired after getting suspended for posting home addresses of Chief Judge Janet DiFiore in a dispute over the system’s Covid vaccine mandate for employees. (New York Law Journal)
  • Lawdragon has a profile of Vinson & Elkins’ vice chair elect Michael Holmes, who’s also co-head of the Texas-headquartered firm’s complex commercial litigation group; San Francisco-founded hybrid law firm Rimon launched in New Orleans. (Reuters)
  • Debevoise & Plimpton advised Resolution Life US Holdings Inc. on its $9.4 billion reinsurance deal with Lincoln Financial Group. (Businesswire)

Laterals, Moves, In-house

  • The general counsel to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, former Hughes Hubbard partner and federal prosecutor John Wood, is joining the House of Representatives’ Jan. 6 select committee. Wood will serve as senior investigative counsel and of-counsel to committee vice chair Rep. Liz Cheney, a report says; Nelson Mullins grabbed King & Spalding automotive regulation & transportation safety counsel Christie Iannetta as a partner in Washington. She’s a former Transportation Department senior trial attorney; Alston & Bird recruited longtime Justice Department official Albert (BJ) Stieglitz as a white collar defense and government investigations partner in Washington. Stieglitz was most recently acting principal deputy chief of DOJ’s Criminal Division’s fraud section. (
  • Proskauer Rose hired KMPG tax principal Daniel Paulos as a partner in New York. He’s previously been a partner at Fried Frank and Akin Gump and associate at Skadden, Arps; McKool Smith poached McDermott Will & Emery entertainment litigation partner Jeffery McFarland as a principal in Los Angeles. He earlier spent close to two decades at Quinn Emanuel; employment law firm Jackson Lewis hired litigator Lita M. Verrier as a principal in Boston. She joins from Ropers, Majeski, Kohn & Bentley, where she was a partner; Tarter Krinsky & Drogin hired bankruptcy and corporate restructuring lawyer David H. Wander as partner and Alexander Tiktin as associate; Greensfelder, Hemker & Gale, P.C. added former Kirkland & Ellis intellectual property partner Jared E. Hedman in Chicago as counsel.
  • The National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing lost associate general counsel Katie Hoffman, who left NASCAR to join the legal department at athlete marketing tech firm Opendorse; Royal Bank of Canada promoted its general counsel and executive vice president, Maria Douvas, to chief legal officer. (Corporate Counsel)
  • Alternative dispute resolution services provider JAMS recruited retired California county superior court judge Ben Davidian to its Sacramento panel. In Texas, JAMS added mediation attorney Randi S. Ellis to its panel in Houston, while trial attorney Patrick McManemin joined its Dallas panel. (

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