Dallas Firms

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Re: Dallas Firms

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jun 20, 2012 12:26 pm

So do all (or most) of the "national" firms (Weil, JD, etc.) pay on the NY-scale?

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Re: Dallas Firms

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jun 20, 2012 12:32 pm

unlicensedpotato wrote:Thanks that is a big help. Ya, by year 4 I think one would generally be looking at 200k (TX Scale) vs. 270k (NY Scale).


That seems about right, but I would expect that the Texas scale is probably just over 200k in year 4 (but probably not more than 210k and depending on hours, of course).

Remember, though, that partner salaries at BigTex firms range from approximately 400k for first-year partners to a couple million for very senior and/or very productive partners and in-house positions for people that went in-house as associates don't usually have much upside (though they offer a very comfortable living). The top in-house people seem to have gone in house when they were partners.

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Re: Dallas Firms

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jun 20, 2012 12:33 pm

Anonymous User wrote:So do all (or most) of the "national" firms (Weil, JD, etc.) pay on the NY-scale?


My understanding is that Weil and Gibson pay NY scale and that JD Dallas is probably a little below. I'm not sure about places like Sidley Dallas... but no one seems to go there.

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Re: Dallas Firms

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jun 20, 2012 1:21 pm

Anonymous User wrote:One thing to consider - HB publishes a firm-wide offer rate, so the 75% figure includes offices like San Antonio and Austin which can throw things off. I believe HB has had an offer rate in the Dallas office of between 80-90% for at least the past 5 years or so (with the possible exception of 2009 when it might have been slightly lower). Let's also remember that plenty of BigTex firms had disastrous offer rates in 2009: 50% at BB Dallas, 55% at BG Houston, approx 65% at TK Dallas. It was a bad year for alot of firms.

So, yes, HB's typical offer rate is slightly lower than the other BigTex firms which average about 90% (not counting recession years) - but this difference is fairly small.


HB's Dallas office, and a few of its transactional groups specifically, screwed a lot of summer associates in 2010. HB knew before the 2010 summer began that several of its transactional groups would not be hiring for the following year but still allowed those groups to be among the two through which summers could rotate. The majority--maybe even all--of summer associates who rotated through the Finance group, for example, didn't receive offers, while nearly everyone who rotated through Litigation did.

So, did HB acknowledge that it had mistakenly over-hired for certain transactional groups? Nope! Instead, HB gave fig-leaf "performance based" reasons for the no-offers. Several no-offered summer associate--one of whom I know to be competent and hard-working--were told that their performance had been deficient, notwithstanding that their reviews had been positive, some glowing even. Worse, HB refused to allow any of the HB attorneys to provide references for 3L hiring purposes. Ostensibly, HB did all of this to keep secret the fact that some of its transactional groups weren't getting enough work, even if doing so ruined its reputation among those unlucky summer associates and anyone who heard their stories.

HB outwardly prides itself on maintaining an upbeat, friendly image. Just remember that there's a dark side, too.
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Re: Dallas Firms

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jun 20, 2012 2:08 pm

Anonymous User wrote:HB's Dallas office, and its corporate group specifically, screwed a lot of summer associates in 2010. HB knew before the 2010 summer began that several of its corporate subgroups would not be hiring for the following year but still allowed those subgroups to be among the two through which summers could rotate. The majority--maybe even all--of summer associates who rotated through the Finance group, for example, didn't receive offers, while nearly everyone who rotated through Litigation did.


To be fair, alot of firms screwed people over in 2010 - BB had a 50% offer rate for all of its summer associates in Dallas that year (13 out of 26 summer associates no-offered). Agreed that is sort of BS when "performance" is used for layoffs or no offers, but let's also not kid ourselves - every layoff and no offer is to some extent performance-based. Unless every single associate is fired or no-offered, then firms are obviously giving offers to (or keeping) those associates that are the highest performers, even if the bar is being set much higher than normal.

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Re: Dallas Firms

Postby de5igual » Wed Jun 20, 2012 2:14 pm

unlicensedpotato wrote:Thanks that is a big help. Ya, by year 4 I think one would generally be looking at 200k (TX Scale) vs. 270k (NY Scale).


lol NY payscale is not 270 by year 4, considering the paltry bonuses. It's more like 210K base + bonus (NY scale) vs 180K + bonus (Baker Botts scale)

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Re: Dallas Firms

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jun 20, 2012 2:25 pm

f0bolous wrote:
unlicensedpotato wrote:Thanks that is a big help. Ya, by year 4 I think one would generally be looking at 200k (TX Scale) vs. 270k (NY Scale).


lol NY payscale is not 270 by year 4, considering the paltry bonuses. It's more like 210K base + bonus (NY scale) vs 180K + bonus (Baker Botts scale)


I believe NY base is 230k base but BB/BigTex base sounds right.

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Re: Dallas Firms

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jun 20, 2012 2:26 pm

Anonymous User wrote:To be fair, alot of firms screwed people over in 2010 - BB had a 50% offer rate for all of its summer associates in Dallas that year (13 out of 26 summer associates no-offered). Agreed that is sort of BS when "performance" is used for layoffs or no offers, but let's also not kid ourselves - every layoff and no offer is to some extent performance-based. Unless every single associate is fired or no-offered, then firms are obviously giving offers to (or keeping) those associates that are the highest performers, even if the bar is being set much higher than normal.


Other anon here. The issue isn't that HB overhired; a lot of firms did. That's unfortunate, but excusable. What to me is inexcusable was that HB was disingenuous about the reasons why many summer associates weren't invited back.

Your point about all hiring decisions being performance-based would be well taken if the circumstances indicated that everyone had a fair chance to distinguish themselves. But my point is that things were, for lack of a better term, rigged. Because many of the summer associates that were no-offered had no idea that they had chosen to rotate through non-hiring groups, they were unfairly left without a seat when the music stopped. Had they known, like HB apparently did, that many corporate subgroups wouldn't be hiring, they would have chosen other (hiring) groups in the firm or perhaps a different firm altogether. At least then they would have had a fair shot at an offer.

But, after depriving these summer associates of that fair shot, HB hurt their career prospects even further by insisting that the HB attorneys whom they had worked with couldn't provide references for them. This allowed HB to maintain its facade that any problems leading to the no-offers were with the candidates' performance, not with the lack of work coming HB's way. It's that insult-to-injury aspect that disgusted me and, I think, should serve as a cautionary tale.

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Re: Dallas Firms

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jun 20, 2012 2:32 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Other anon here. The issue isn't that HB overhired; a lot of firms did. That's unfortunate, but excusable. What to me is inexcusable was that HB was disingenuous about the reasons why many summer associates weren't invited back.

Your point about all hiring decisions being performance-based would be well taken if the circumstances indicated that everyone had a fair chance to distinguish themselves. But my point is that things were, for lack of a better term, rigged. Because many of the summer associates that were no-offered had no idea that they had chosen to rotate through non-hiring groups, they were unfairly left without a seat when the music stopped. Had they known, like HB apparently did, that many corporate subgroups wouldn't be hiring, they would have chosen other (hiring) groups in the firm or perhaps a different firm altogether. At least then they would have had a fair shot at an offer.

But, after depriving these summer associates of that fair shot, HB hurt their career prospects even further by insisting that the HB attorneys whom they had worked with couldn't provide references for them. This allowed HB to maintain its facade that any problems leading to the no-offers were with the candidates' performance, not with the lack of work coming HB's way. It's that insult-to-injury aspect that disgusted me and, I think, should serve as a cautionary tale.


I think we can agree that they handled things poorly - but they were not alone in that regard. Their overall offer rate that year was in line with other BigTex firms.

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Re: Dallas Firms

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jun 20, 2012 2:41 pm

Anonymous User wrote:I think we can agree that they handled things poorly - but they were not alone in that regard. Their overall offer rate that year was in line with other BigTex firms.


Have you heard of VE, BB, FJ, LL, or any other BigTex firm handling things that poorly? I'll give you that offer rates were low across-the-board in 2009 and maybe even in 2010. In part, that's just how Texas Biglaw works, although the lower offer rates were better suited to a time when, unlike now, it was customary for someone to split the post-2L summer.

The offer rates themselves tell only part of the story. All things being equal, someone would be better off at a firm that was upfront about its diminished hiring expectations and gave everyone a real chance to compete for a spot, than at a firm that handicapped certain candidates based on luck-of-the-draw and then refused to support those candidates for the purpose of concealing problems with the firm's health. It's a particularly nasty bait-and-switch for a firm, like HB, that makes its transparency a selling point.

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Re: Dallas Firms

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jun 20, 2012 2:44 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:I think we can agree that they handled things poorly - but they were not alone in that regard. Their overall offer rate that year was in line with other BigTex firms.


Have you heard of VE, BB, FJ, LL, or any other BigTex firm handling things that poorly? I'll give you that offer rates were low across-the-board in 2009 and maybe even in 2010. In part, that's just how Texas Biglaw works, although the lower offer rates were better suited to a time when, unlike now, it was customary for someone to split the post-2L summer.

The offer rates themselves tell only part of the story. All things being equal, someone would be better off at a firm that was upfront about its diminished hiring expectations and gave everyone a real chance to compete for a spot, than at a firm that handicapped certain candidates based on luck-of-the-draw and then refused to support those candidates for the purpose of concealing problems with the firm's health. It's a particularly nasty bait-and-switch for a firm, like HB, that makes its transparency a selling point.

We get it, you don't like HB. Noted.

Now let's get this thing back on track. Any comments on comparative work/life balance?

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Re: Dallas Firms

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jun 20, 2012 2:53 pm

Anonymous User wrote:We get it, you don't like HB. Noted.

Now let's get this thing back on track. Any comments on comparative work/life balance?


It's not that I "don't like HB." To prove it, I'll add that from what I understand, the people there are quite friendly, and the work atmosphere is pleasant. Last I heard, the annual billable expectation is a soft 1850. At the least, work-life balance there is on par with or better than that of its peers. I just thought it was worthwhile to note some caveats for anyone considering HB, particularly if they are interested in corporate work.

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Re: Dallas Firms

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jun 20, 2012 2:58 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:We get it, you don't like HB. Noted.

Now let's get this thing back on track. Any comments on comparative work/life balance?


It's not that I "don't like HB." To prove it, I'll add that from what I understand, the people there are quite friendly, and the work atmosphere is pleasant. Last I heard, the annual billable expectation is a soft 1850. At the least, work-life balance there is on par with or better than that of its peers. I just thought it was worthwhile to note some caveats for anyone considering HB, particularly if they are interested in corporate work.

Don't get me wrong, I appreciated your post and the content of it. It was just getting repetitive.

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Re: Dallas Firms

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jun 20, 2012 3:05 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:We get it, you don't like HB. Noted.

Now let's get this thing back on track. Any comments on comparative work/life balance?


It's not that I "don't like HB." To prove it, I'll add that from what I understand, the people there are quite friendly, and the work atmosphere is pleasant. Last I heard, the annual billable expectation is a soft 1850. At the least, work-life balance there is on par with or better than that of its peers. I just thought it was worthwhile to note some caveats for anyone considering HB, particularly if they are interested in corporate work.


Let's also be clear about something else - at HB, the "finance" and "corporate" groups are very very different. It is my understanding this poster had a bad experience with HB finance and not HB corporate - which doesn't surprise me.

As for work/life balance, the 1850 seems low. That may be for just billables as I believe HB does give credit for pro bono work (maybe 100 hours?). I also know that some groups routinely (see, e.g., HB corporate) bill over 2000 hours per associate - but my guess is the average is probably 2000-2200. That may sound like alot, but the good thing is that it is evenly spread out among the associates. VE is notorious for having half the associates bill 2500 hours and the other half 1500 - which works out well for them bc the slow associates get fired/go in house/get bored and leave and the busy ones get worked to death and leave, which means they don't have to make many partners and they still get 2000 hours average out of the associates.

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Re: Dallas Firms

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jun 20, 2012 3:11 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Let's also be clear about something else - at HB, the "finance" and "corporate" groups are very very different. It is my understanding this poster had a bad experience with HB finance and not HB corporate - which doesn't surprise me.

As for work/life balance, the 1850 seems low. That may be for just billables as I believe HB does give credit for pro bono work (maybe 100 hours?). I also know that some groups routinely (see, e.g., HB corporate) bill over 2000 hours per associate - but my guess is the average is probably 2000-2200. That may sound like alot, but the good thing is that it is evenly spread out among the associates. VE is notorious for having half the associates bill 2500 hours and the other half 1500 - which works out well for them bc the slow associates get fired/go in house/get bored and leave and the busy ones get worked to death and leave, which means they don't have to make many partners and they still get 2000 hours average out of the associates.


Yeah, I should have been clearer about a few things. The experience was an acquaintance's, not mine. Also, I should have used "transactional" to describe what I called "corporate"--that betrays my status as a litigator, I guess. Finally, the 1850 figure was meant as a floor, not an average. I did get the impression that the hours distribution among associates at HB is less lopsided than at other BigTex firms.

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Re: Dallas Firms

Postby unlicensedpotato » Wed Jun 20, 2012 4:00 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
f0bolous wrote:
unlicensedpotato wrote:Thanks that is a big help. Ya, by year 4 I think one would generally be looking at 200k (TX Scale) vs. 270k (NY Scale).


lol NY payscale is not 270 by year 4, considering the paltry bonuses. It's more like 210K base + bonus (NY scale) vs 180K + bonus (Baker Botts scale)


I believe NY base is 230k base but BB/BigTex base sounds right.


Ya my mistake I should have clarified that my numbers were including bonuses. NY Scale I believe includes bigger bonuses as well (in dollar terms, I'm not sure about percentage-wise) so I still think it gives a fairly accurate picture.

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Re: Dallas Firms

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jun 20, 2012 10:13 pm

nm.
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Re: Dallas Firms

Postby turkeysub » Wed Jun 20, 2012 10:16 pm

.
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Re: Dallas Firms

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Jun 21, 2012 12:40 am

Do any Dallas firms hire 3Ls? Curious because I do not see any on Symplicity for OCI. SA here non-Dallas but have ties to big D.

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Re: Dallas Firms

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Jun 21, 2012 10:55 am

Some firms hire 3L's but its very rare and likely only if they had a low acceptance rate.

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Re: Dallas Firms

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Jun 22, 2012 11:00 am

I've heard that Dallas firms are really big on ties, and that they make a bigger deal than even the Houston offices. I'm in Dallas several times a year as I live not far away, and have plenty of friends that live in DFW, but never lived/worked in DFW, will this hold me back? On the other hand, I have actually worked in Houston.

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Re: Dallas Firms

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Sep 14, 2012 1:30 pm

This has been helpful.

Does anyone know if the Patton Boggs payscale is TX scale or Nat'l Scale (follows DC?)
Also, what is the length of Patton Bogg's program if you don't split? 8 or 10 weeks?

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Re: Dallas Firms

Postby ShitLawOrBust » Fri Sep 14, 2012 1:31 pm

.?

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Re: Dallas Firms

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Sep 14, 2012 6:47 pm

Anonymous User wrote:This has been helpful.

Does anyone know if the Patton Boggs payscale is TX scale or Nat'l Scale (follows DC?)
Also, what is the length of Patton Bogg's program if you don't split? 8 or 10 weeks?


It's based on the national scale. Program is 6 to 8 weeks.




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