Layoffs back? Weil cutting associates

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Georgia Avenue
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Re: Layoffs back? Weil cutting associates

Postby Georgia Avenue » Tue Jun 25, 2013 8:58 am

Desert Fox wrote:
c3pO4 wrote:bankruptcy work related to Lehman is done? isn't this a sign that the hangover from 2007 is over? shouldn't we be encouraged?


Lol. They are firing complex commericial lit people, not BK.

Bad sign bro.


This is actually not true. According to someone at Weil, several BK associates in NYC and almost everyone outside of NYC are gone.

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stuckinthemiddle
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Re: Layoffs back? Weil cutting associates

Postby stuckinthemiddle » Tue Jun 25, 2013 9:01 am

This thread is making me sad. :(

Image

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hyakku
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Re: Layoffs back? Weil cutting associates

Postby hyakku » Tue Jun 25, 2013 9:06 am

stuckinthemiddle wrote:This thread is making me sad. :(

Image


At least it's not right before your OCI -_-.

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UVAIce
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Re: Layoffs back? Weil cutting associates

Postby UVAIce » Tue Jun 25, 2013 9:17 am

I have a feeling this year will not be a happy one for legal employment. I've been doing a lot of browsing on the NALP Directory and it seems to me that a number of firms are projecting smaller class sizes this year. Not exactly wonderful news.

gnuwheels
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Re: Layoffs back? Weil cutting associates

Postby gnuwheels » Tue Jun 25, 2013 9:22 am

UVAIce wrote:I have a feeling this year will not be a happy one for legal employment. I've been doing a lot of browsing on the NALP Directory and it seems to me that a number of firms are projecting smaller class sizes this year. Not exactly wonderful news.


I noticed the same thing

anon168
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Re: Layoffs back? Weil cutting associates

Postby anon168 » Tue Jun 25, 2013 9:32 am

This is actually a positive sign.

If only more firms would be more willing to layoff associates and do it in a more open fashion the legal industry would be healthier and better.

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bjsesq
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Re: Layoffs back? Weil cutting associates

Postby bjsesq » Tue Jun 25, 2013 9:41 am

Winston victims would like to welcome recent Weil layoffs. The water is warm, folks.

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Old Gregg
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Re: Layoffs back? Weil cutting associates

Postby Old Gregg » Tue Jun 25, 2013 9:43 am

even more shitty that it's happening in front of summers.

NYstate
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Re: Layoffs back? Weil cutting associates

Postby NYstate » Tue Jun 25, 2013 9:46 am

anon168 wrote:This is actually a positive sign.

If only more firms would be more willing to layoff associates and do it in a more open fashion the legal industry would be healthier and better.


Positive for whom?

The only way this is positive news for anyone on TLS is if it convinces some 0Ls that biglaw is not something to count on.

NYstate
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Re: Layoffs back? Weil cutting associates

Postby NYstate » Tue Jun 25, 2013 9:47 am

Fresh Prince wrote:even more shitty that it's happening in front of summers.


When would be a better time? Summers aren't a real priority in terms of firm health.

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Re: Layoffs back? Weil cutting associates

Postby rad lulz » Tue Jun 25, 2013 9:52 am

NYstate wrote:
Fresh Prince wrote:even more shitty that it's happening in front of summers.


When would be a better time? Summers aren't a real priority in terms of firm health.

Yeah srsly

Not like they're gonna do anything about it

3LOLCI

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Re: Layoffs back? Weil cutting associates

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jun 25, 2013 9:53 am

NYstate wrote:
Fresh Prince wrote:even more shitty that it's happening in front of summers.


When would be a better time? Summers aren't a real priority in terms of firm health.


(an NY associate here)

This is actually what I find the most surprising. Scaring summer associates isn't going to hurt the firm's PPP, but firms still care a lot about recruiting and reputation. Weil in particular has a clogged pipeline, so maybe they thought short memories would save them, but it's definitely head-turning timing now.

Summer is usually the time to announce partners, take vacations, etc. I've run some numbers and summer is relatively low on associate departures, at least places I'm familiar with.

NYstate
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Re: Layoffs back? Weil cutting associates

Postby NYstate » Tue Jun 25, 2013 10:07 am

Anonymous User wrote:
NYstate wrote:
Fresh Prince wrote:even more shitty that it's happening in front of summers.


When would be a better time? Summers aren't a real priority in terms of firm health.


(an NY associate here)

This is actually what I find the most surprising. Scaring summer associates isn't going to hurt the firm's PPP, but firms still care a lot about recruiting and reputation. Weil in particular has a clogged pipeline, so maybe they thought short memories would save them, but it's definitely head-turning timing now.

Summer is usually the time to announce partners, take vacations, etc. I've run some numbers and summer is relatively low on associate departures, at least places I'm familiar with.


Not too many places are hiring in the summer so not too many people leave.

They have 6 months before year end (I think) so they will be starting 2014 with a better balance sheet.

I think Weil knows its an employers' market and is likely to remain so for the foreseeable future. Of course they care about reputation but they won't ever have trouble finding good people.
Last edited by NYstate on Tue Jun 25, 2013 10:10 am, edited 2 times in total.

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Blessedassurance
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Re: Layoffs back? Weil cutting associates

Postby Blessedassurance » Tue Jun 25, 2013 10:08 am

bjsesq wrote:Winston victims...


link?

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bjsesq
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Re: Layoffs back? Weil cutting associates

Postby bjsesq » Tue Jun 25, 2013 10:10 am

Blessedassurance wrote:
bjsesq wrote:Winston victims...


link?


It happened last year. Lit associate layoffs and lit summer no offers.

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Re: Layoffs back? Weil cutting associates

Postby dixiecupdrinking » Tue Jun 25, 2013 10:14 am

hyakku wrote:
stuckinthemiddle wrote:This thread is making me sad. :(

Image


At least it's not right before your OCI -_-.

It's actually pretty good timing for you. Would you rather get this news:

1. Before OCI
2. During your summer at Weil
3. While waiting to start at Weil
4. As an associate at Weil

if you catch my drift. You're actually in a position to do something with this information.

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Re: Layoffs back? Weil cutting associates

Postby gnuwheels » Tue Jun 25, 2013 10:31 am

dixiecupdrinking wrote:It's actually pretty good timing for you. Would you rather get this news:

1. Before OCI
2. During your summer at Weil
3. While waiting to start at Weil
4. As an associate at Weil

if you catch my drift. You're actually in a position to do something with this information.


I think the concern is less about Weil in particular but rather what this means for industry hiring in general. It's not like we can really change anything about our approach to OCI if class sizes across the board are shrinking and layoffs are increasing.

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Re: Layoffs back? Weil cutting associates

Postby dixiecupdrinking » Tue Jun 25, 2013 10:56 am

gnuwheels wrote:
dixiecupdrinking wrote:It's actually pretty good timing for you. Would you rather get this news:

1. Before OCI
2. During your summer at Weil
3. While waiting to start at Weil
4. As an associate at Weil

if you catch my drift. You're actually in a position to do something with this information.


I think the concern is less about Weil in particular but rather what this means for industry hiring in general. It's not like we can really change anything about our approach to OCI if class sizes across the board are shrinking and layoffs are increasing.

Of course. Everyone is worried. But it's tone deaf to play the woe is me game, especially when you aren't wedded to Weil at all and there is plenty of reason to think Weil's issues are largely firm-specific. It does bode poorly for the industry, but that's because it sets a bad precedent for other firms that it's cool to start contracting now, not because the particular reasons Weil decided to do this are also true in every big firm.

I guess what I'm trying to say is there are a lot of people affected by this, and rising 2Ls aren't anywhere near the top of that list.

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Old Gregg
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Re: Layoffs back? Weil cutting associates

Postby Old Gregg » Tue Jun 25, 2013 11:04 am

Howrey basically fires everyone (because the firm dissolved), people munch on popcorn. Dewey does the same, people munch on popcorn. Weil fires 60 associates, people freak the fuck out.

:roll:

09042014
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Re: Layoffs back? Weil cutting associates

Postby 09042014 » Tue Jun 25, 2013 11:06 am

I think Latham has proved the 1L's attention span is short when preftige is involved. As long as Weil still is V10, they'll do fine at recruiting.

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Old Gregg
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Re: Layoffs back? Weil cutting associates

Postby Old Gregg » Tue Jun 25, 2013 11:07 am

NYstate wrote:
Fresh Prince wrote:even more shitty that it's happening in front of summers.


When would be a better time? Summers aren't a real priority in terms of firm health.


Yeah, but there's this thing called "multiple perspectives." From the firm's perspective, who gives a fuck? From the summer's perspective, kind of sucks to have layoffs cast a pall on the summer program, and it has to make them jittery about the potential for no offers or deferrals. It's not really the atmosphere you're lusting for when you choose a V10.

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Re: Layoffs back? Weil cutting associates

Postby redbullvodka » Tue Jun 25, 2013 11:10 am

UVAIce wrote:I have a feeling this year will not be a happy one for legal employment. I've been doing a lot of browsing on the NALP Directory and it seems to me that a number of firms are projecting smaller class sizes this year. Not exactly wonderful news.


I think everyone is reading way more into this than they should. Weil's PPP and RPL numbers flattened or declined this year; they've largely relied on countercyclical practice groups the last 5 years, and now we're in a weird middle stage where we're not on the upside or downside of a business cycle. And, when you look at the financials of some of the other big NYC firms, many of which posted strong positive growth in RPL, it's clear that Weil's corporate side hasn't picked up to the same degree.

A big part of this may just be partners pissed off that their draw has gone down, and this is a way to remedy that.

TL;DR: This screams "firm-specific," when put in the above context.

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Old Gregg
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Re: Layoffs back? Weil cutting associates

Postby Old Gregg » Tue Jun 25, 2013 11:16 am

There are tons of big firm associates on this forum. They know how busy their firms are. You get worried when you have super long stretches of time with no billable work (and I mean months on end).


At my firm, and I think this is true for a lot of other firms, transactional work was slow for the first 2-3 months this year, but it all picked up right back at around the end of March. Lots of big deals happening.

Someone above was talking about the fed increasing interest rates and that influencing deal flow because money will no longer be cheap. I guess that's true in a normal economy, but this economy isn't normal. Lot's of companies and funds sitting on mountains of cash and ready to do some M&A. To quote a very frequently mentioned phrase in the transactional world, there's a lot of dry powder but not that many acting on it.

Interest rates won't change that, really.

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Re: Layoffs back? Weil cutting associates

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jun 25, 2013 11:25 am

Fresh Prince wrote:At my firm, and I think this is true for a lot of other firms, transactional work was slow for the first 2-3 months this year, but it all picked up right back at around the end of March. Lots of big deals happening.

Someone above was talking about the fed increasing interest rates and that influencing deal flow because money will no longer be cheap. I guess that's true in a normal economy, but this economy isn't normal. Lot's of companies and funds sitting on mountains of cash and ready to do some M&A. To quote a very frequently mentioned phrase in the transactional world, there's a lot of dry powder but not that many acting on it.

Interest rates won't change that, really.


Sounds about right for my (big NYC) firm as well. We had a disconnect between securities work and M&A work (the former was consistently busy while the latter had some very quiet moments) but overall lots of business. Our litigators are also very busy, but I get the impression lit is in a very feast/famine area right now and there's currently a lot of inter-firm competition to carve up the shrinking pie.

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Re: Layoffs back? Weil cutting associates

Postby imchuckbass58 » Tue Jun 25, 2013 11:35 am

c3pO4 wrote:bankruptcy work related to Lehman is done? isn't this a sign that the hangover from 2007 is over? shouldn't we be encouraged?


I don't think this is encouraging at all.

Lots of have people have been saying that Weil is just doing now what other firms did in the past. That is not really true. First off, Weil did a pretty big staff layoff in 2009 (publicly announced). They also deferred massive numbers of associates, even though many of their peer firms (roughly, NY V10s) did not, and they continued their deferrals into 2012, long after similar firms had returned to a normal schedule. Second, most of Weil's peer firms did not do layoffs in 2009. To the extent some of them may have stealthed people / increased attrition, there's been rumors of this happening at Weil as well, particularly in corporate. Third, very few large firms attempted to push out partners en masse (this is effectively what Weil is doing by reducing their compensation, since the partnership agreement does not allow Weil to directly fire partners without cause).

I'd also point out that the memo does not just say that BK and lit have been slowing, it also says corporate hasn't picked up. This not consistent with general market trends, at least among top NY firms. The lit departments at many NY firms are extremely short staffed right now, and the corporate departments, while not slammed, are pretty busy.

If anything, I think there's less of an excuse for doing layoffs now. Weil knew Lehman and GM weren't going to go on forever - they had plenty of time to adjust capacity by taking smaller incoming classes and/or encouraging midlevels and seniors to lateral. The fact they have to resort for layoffs to me indicates they failed to hit their demand forecasts. That is bad.




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