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Wake Up Call: Private Equity Dealmakers Cite Workload Crush

June 8, 2021, 12:48 PM

In today’s column, Big law firms are helping New York legal nonprofits’ fight their employees’ efforts to unionize; Boies Schiller Flexner had no engagement letter with Elizabeth Holmes while it was doing work for her and her company, a report says; Greenspoon Marder announced a development program for associates.

  • Leading off, as law firms continue to take different approaches to their return to office plans, some lawyers are already getting ”in-person” pressure to get back into the office, according to a recent survey of dealmakers. (Above the Law) Meanwhile, corporate lawyers in London say a flood of recent private equity deals is creating unsustainable workloads for teams. (American Lawyer)
  • Big Law firms, including Winston & Strawn and Proskauer Rose, are providing legal services, in some cases pro bono, in efforts to block employees from unionizing at New York City legal nonprofits where the firms have partners on the board. Lawyers and staffers at the nonprofits expressed surprise and disgust at the report. (Business Insider)
  • As the legal profession continues to deal with after-effects of the Covid-19 pandemic, the role of law firm general counsel is growing importance. ( International)

Lawyers, Law Firms

  • Hartford, Ct.-based Day Pitney, which has about 300 lawyers, said it is forming a strategic alliance with midsize Northern Virginia-based FH+H to allow both law firms to expand their services; Florida headquartered Greenspoon Marder announced a new professional development program for associates and said a former litigation partner at the firm, Deborah Baker, is returning as program director and a practicing partner; Latham & Watkins said it launched a free virtual program for people from business, academic, and legal fields to learn about how a Big Law firm works on a regulatory review of a major M&A deal. (
  • Elite litigation firm Boies Schiller Flexner didn’t have an engagement letter with Elizabeth Holmes or her defunct blood-testing startup Theranos, even though it was doing work for both, a report says. (AmLaw Litigation Daily)
  • Deal update: Dechert is advising GIC, Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund, on its part in an over $30 billion deal by three private equity giants to buy a controlling stake in U.S. medical supply distributor Medline Industries Inc. (BLAW)

Laterals, Moves, In-House

  • BakerHostetler recruited former Commerce Department enforcement and litigation chief Melissa Mannino in Washington as a partner in its international trade and national security practice. She arrives from Wilson Sonsini, where she was of counsel; Reed Smith brought on veteran capital markets lawyer Robert Lustrin as counsel in its transportation industry group, in New York. Lustrin left Seward & Kissel in January 2020 after close to 26 years, including as a partner; Eversheds Sutherland got back capital markets and investments lawyer Owen Pinkerton, who was at the firm earlier in his career. Pinkerton, a former SEC attorney-adviser and senior counsel, returns as a partner in Washington from Thompson Hine. (
  • Pryor Cashman recruited former New York federal prosecutor Sidhardha Kamaraju as a partner in New York in its white collar defense + investigations, financial institutions, and litigation groups; U.K. elite firm Linklaters hired data leader Ieuan Jolly as a partner in New York, where he’ll serve as co-chair of the firm’s U.S. data solutions, cyber and privacy practice. He arrives with an associate from Loeb & Loeb, where Jolly was partner and co-chair of privacy, security & data innovations. (
  • Squire Patton Boggs hired real estate finance specialist Jon Lent as a partner in London. He arrives from Gowling WLG where he co-led the real estate finance practice and led its health care and hotel finance practices. Making the move with him is attorney Bradley Silver, who joins as a director in the practice and two senior associates; Latham & Watkins poached two corporate partners from Baker McKenzie in Düsseldorf, Germany, including Ingo Strauss, who, according to his LinkedIn profile, was co-head of Baker’s German/Austrian corporate M&A practice and chair of its EMEA private equity practice group. Also making the move to Latham is Heiko Gotsche. (


  • Capturing electronically stored data causes problems for most legal departments, a report says. (Legaltech News)

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

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Rebekah Mintzer at; Darren Bowman at