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Wake Up Call: U.K. Lawyer Sues Ropes for ‘Unrelenting Workload’

Oct. 6, 2021, 12:32 PM

In today’s column, Ropes & Gray says it’s still planning to reopen its offices starting in November; a New York state appeals judge is barred from her chambers because she’s out of compliance with the state court system’s vaccine mandate; an L.A. firm’s new associate pay scale for 2022 beats this year’s Davis Polk scale by a lot.

  • Leading off, in a U.K. High Court suit, a London-based Ropes & Gray associate says her “unrelenting workload” at the firm is causing a “depressive illness” that keeps her from doing her job, according to a report. (The Lawyer) A recent Bloomberg Law survey found work-life balance is the top reason attorneys plan to leave their organizations. (BLAW) Several U.S. firms have put off their office reopening plans to 2022, citing rapid spread of delta-variant Covid-19 cases. But Ropes & Gray says conditions are improving, so it plans to start reopening its offices starting Nov. 8. (American Lawyer)
  • A New York appeals judge was barred from entering any state court facilities because she has not complied with the state’s vaccine mandate. (New York Post) Vaccine exemption requests are posing a big challenge for in-house legal departments. (Corporate Counsel)
  • New York City’s top real estate firms saw their overall transactions fall during the pandemic, so they had to get creative. (TheRealDeal)

Lawyers, Law Firms

  • Michelman & Robinson, an eighty-lawyer firm based in Los Angeles, announced a 2022 pay scale that will give associates from $230,000 to $450,000, depending on their year of seniority. That beats Davis Polk’s 2021 scale by a lot. (The Recorder)
  • Cadwalader is making progress on promoting diversity, thanks to its “mentorship on steroids” program. (Reuters) Women lawyers and judges in Afghanistan are in hiding from men they prosecuted before the Taliban returned. (BBC via Yahoo! News)
  • Chief legal officer hires by American companies have increased 53% since September 2020, a LinkedIn study shows. (Corporate Counsel)

Laterals, Moves, In-house

  • Morrison & Foerster recruited former California U.S. attorney Adam L. Braverman, recently Justice Department deputy attorney general, as a partner in San Diego in its investigations + white collar defense group in San Diego; Sidley Austin hired Kirkland & Ellis restructuring partner Anthony Grossi as a partner in its New York and Washington offices. He earlier served as bankruptcy counsel to the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on the Judiciary; Dentons poached Covington & Burling’s securities enforcement head, David Kornblau as a partner in New York; King & Spalding grabbed Dechert international arbitration partner Erica Franzetti for its trial and global disputes practice. She’s based in Washington and focuses on Brazil for sectors including energy and natural resources, life sciences, among others; Holland & Hart brought in Hogan Lovells energy and natural resources partner Liz Titus in Denver. (HollandHart.com)
  • Morgan, Lewis & Bockius added investment management lawyer Lance Dial as a partner in Boston. He joins from Wellington Management, a global independent investment management firm, where he served as managing director and counsel since 2013; Willkie Farr & Gallagher hired Hogan Lovells intellectual property litigator Krista Schwartz as a partner in San Francisco. She earlier spent 19 years at Jones Day, including as partner; Cole Schotz added veteran IP lawyers Rajkumar Vinnakota and Sean N. Hsu as members in Dallas, Texas; Morris, Manning & Martin recruited Altson & Bird counsel Michael Young as a partner and to lead its privacy & cybersecurity practice; DLA Piper got Sheppard Mullin cybersecurity attorney Justine Phillips as a partner in its regulatory and government affairs practice in San Diego; a10-year veteran in the Manhattan district attorney’s cybercrime & identity theft bureau, Daniel Haier, joined Cipriani & Werner PC in New York. (PR Newswire)
  • Brown Rudnick said tax partner Barbara Klepper joined the firm in Washington after close to a decade in Oklahoma City at McAfee & Taft; Fish & Richardson said Faegre Drinker legal marketing pro Melanie Green joined the firm as chief marketing and business development officer, based in Minneapolis. (FR.com)

Legal Education

  • A New York federal judge threw out a decision to discharge a law school grad’s student debt. (ABA Journal); Paul Weiss launched an ESG and Law Institute with UC Berkeley School of Law’s Business in Society Institute. (PaulWeiss.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

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