Bonus Speculation

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Lincoln

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Re: Bonus Speculation

Postby Lincoln » Tue Dec 05, 2017 6:37 pm

A TTT bonus practice I wasn't aware of until recently is that Quinn Emanuel doesn't pay bonuses to associates who weren't there a full year. That doesn't sound like a big deal, but consider this scenario:

Lincoln graduated from a T6 law school (with six figures of debt, obviously) in 2015 and joined hotshot, fast-growing litigation powerhouse Quinn Emanuel in September 2015. Lincoln worked at Quinn and billed about 1 million hours before leaving the firm in August 2016 for a preftigious clerkship. Lincoln obviously didn't get a bonus in 2016 because he was not employed in December.

After finishing the clerkship, Lincoln then returned to Quinn in September 2017. My understanding is that Quinn will not pay Lincoln any bonus in 2017. Lincoln's first bonus will instead be in December 2018, but which time Lincoln will have worked at Quinn for 28 months and billed about 8 billion hours.

By contrast, Lincoln's buddy, Seward, graduated from the same T6 law school also in 2015. Seward joined the litigation department of a V5 firm. (I'll let you venture a guess at which firm Seward joined.) Seward also left to clerk in August 2016 and returned to his V5 firm in September 2017. In December 2017, Seward will receive a bonus that is pro-rated for both 2016 and 2017, meaning that he'll receive 8/12*15,000+4/12*25,000 = $18,333.

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rpupkin

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Re: Bonus Speculation

Postby rpupkin » Tue Dec 05, 2017 7:05 pm

Lincoln wrote:A TTT bonus practice I wasn't aware of until recently is that Quinn Emanuel doesn't pay bonuses to associates who weren't there a full year. That doesn't sound like a big deal, but consider this scenario:

Lincoln graduated from a T6 law school (with six figures of debt, obviously) in 2015 and joined hotshot, fast-growing litigation powerhouse Quinn Emanuel in September 2015. Lincoln worked at Quinn and billed about 1 million hours before leaving the firm in August 2016 for a preftigious clerkship. Lincoln obviously didn't get a bonus in 2016 because he was not employed in December.

After finishing the clerkship, Lincoln then returned to Quinn in September 2017. My understanding is that Quinn will not pay Lincoln any bonus in 2017. Lincoln's first bonus will instead be in December 2018, but which time Lincoln will have worked at Quinn for 28 months and billed about 8 billion hours.

It doesn't surprise me that Quinn operates that way. But it's definitely not just a QE thing; I know people at other big law firms who have been treated similarly when leaving to clerk and then returning.

Also, there's a glaring weakness in your hypo: Who would leave Quinn "for a prftigious clerkship" and then return to Quinn afterward?

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Lincoln

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Re: Bonus Speculation

Postby Lincoln » Wed Dec 06, 2017 3:08 pm

rpupkin wrote:
Lincoln wrote:A TTT bonus practice I wasn't aware of until recently is that Quinn Emanuel doesn't pay bonuses to associates who weren't there a full year. That doesn't sound like a big deal, but consider this scenario:

Lincoln graduated from a T6 law school (with six figures of debt, obviously) in 2015 and joined hotshot, fast-growing litigation powerhouse Quinn Emanuel in September 2015. Lincoln worked at Quinn and billed about 1 million hours before leaving the firm in August 2016 for a preftigious clerkship. Lincoln obviously didn't get a bonus in 2016 because he was not employed in December.

After finishing the clerkship, Lincoln then returned to Quinn in September 2017. My understanding is that Quinn will not pay Lincoln any bonus in 2017. Lincoln's first bonus will instead be in December 2018, but which time Lincoln will have worked at Quinn for 28 months and billed about 8 billion hours.

It doesn't surprise me that Quinn operates that way. But it's definitely not just a QE thing; I know people at other big law firms who have been treated similarly when leaving to clerk and then returning.

Also, there's a glaring weakness in your hypo: Who would leave Quinn "for a prftigious clerkship" and then return to Quinn afterward?


Well, I know at least one person who did, which is why I know about this policy.

I think it's bullshit, and the relevant firms should be shamed for it.

nybar2017

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Re: Bonus Speculation

Postby nybar2017 » Wed Dec 06, 2017 3:44 pm

Wouldn't the person in your hypo get a 70k clerkship bonus?

SplitMyPants

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Re: Bonus Speculation

Postby SplitMyPants » Wed Dec 06, 2017 4:01 pm

nybar2017 wrote:Wouldn't the person in your hypo get a 70k clerkship bonus?


that's only supposed to help out with compensating for the shit clerkship pay...
even then, bc prestige isn't free, you're not made whole vis-a-vis a year of big law salary

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2014

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Re: Bonus Speculation

Postby 2014 » Wed Dec 06, 2017 4:43 pm

Getting a full bonus upon your return to the same firm from a clerkship is generally up for negotiation before you depart (anecdotally based on multiple NY firms), though most have a baseline rule of a prorated bonus the year you return rather than no bonus. I say that just to point out that there's a chance that the QE person didn't advocate well enough for themselves, even if the general rule smells a little TTT.

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Re: Bonus Speculation

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Dec 06, 2017 4:49 pm

Came to Quinn after a clerkship (although I was not returning to the firm) and got a clerkship bonus and prorated bonus based on class year. Suspect your friend will get the same.

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Re: Bonus Speculation

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Dec 06, 2017 5:06 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Came to Quinn after a clerkship (although I was not returning to the firm) and got a clerkship bonus and prorated bonus based on class year. Suspect your friend will get the same.


Still negotiable if you ask before accepting the offer, though, yes, what you describe is the default if you don't ask.

Quinn is also notoriously cheap, though.

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Pokemon

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Re: Bonus Speculation

Postby Pokemon » Wed Dec 06, 2017 5:45 pm

This thread is off-topic. Cravats associates are leaving the firm in droves, only way to stop them is the raise to 200

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Re: Bonus Speculation

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Dec 06, 2017 6:09 pm

bonuses at 30-50% of associate's salary?! So...are my calculations right (assuming bare minimum 30%)? If so, this is INSANE.

1st year: 54k (!!!)
2nd: 57k
3rd: 63k

https://abovethelaw.com/2017/12/califor ... t-bonuses/

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Re: Bonus Speculation

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Dec 06, 2017 6:31 pm

Anonymous User wrote:bonuses at 30-50% of associate's salary?! So...are my calculations right (assuming bare minimum 30%)? If so, this is INSANE.

1st year: 54k (!!!)
2nd: 57k
3rd: 63k

https://abovethelaw.com/2017/12/califor ... t-bonuses/


Not to discount the fact that these bonuses are great, but a fed clerkship (or two) is a given for almost all HH associates. Bonuses don't seem as dramatic if everyone's coming in as a third year. i.e.. 50k vs 63k

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Re: Bonus Speculation

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Dec 06, 2017 6:33 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:bonuses at 30-50% of associate's salary?! So...are my calculations right (assuming bare minimum 30%)? If so, this is INSANE.

1st year: 54k (!!!)
2nd: 57k
3rd: 63k

https://abovethelaw.com/2017/12/califor ... t-bonuses/


Not to discount the fact that these bonuses are great, but a fed clerkship (or two) is a given for almost all HH associates. Bonuses don't seem as dramatic if everyone's coming in as a third year. i.e.. 50k vs 63k


I guess but I am pretty sure 3rd years are getting around 50% bonuses (105k) given how everyone who works there is always saying their bonuses are insane.

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Re: Bonus Speculation

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Dec 06, 2017 9:43 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:bonuses at 30-50% of associate's salary?! So...are my calculations right (assuming bare minimum 30%)? If so, this is INSANE.

1st year: 54k (!!!)
2nd: 57k
3rd: 63k

https://abovethelaw.com/2017/12/califor ... t-bonuses/


Not to discount the fact that these bonuses are great, but a fed clerkship (or two) is a given for almost all HH associates. Bonuses don't seem as dramatic if everyone's coming in as a third year. i.e.. 50k vs 63k


I guess but I am pretty sure 3rd years are getting around 50% bonuses (105k) given how everyone who works there is always saying their bonuses are insane.


50% is pretty rare and reserved for the top billers (2500+ at least), and IMO, not worth it for the extra hours; but at least they pay up if you do hit that due to multiple trials etc. 30% is more common for juniors with "normal" hours, but 40% is also common if you had good hours and do good work, particularly for mid-levels and the few senior associates. Still kicks the crap out of market, particularly if you are a junior. It gets compressed the more senior you get, though.

As noted, there aren't really any true first years. Most are former clerks and/or mid-level laterals. There's a lot more individual discretion to bonuses (within the 30-50% band) depending on who you work with, your contributions to the firm, etc., even though the firm treats everyone pretty generously.

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Re: Bonus Speculation

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Dec 06, 2017 9:47 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:bonuses at 30-50% of associate's salary?! So...are my calculations right (assuming bare minimum 30%)? If so, this is INSANE.

1st year: 54k (!!!)
2nd: 57k
3rd: 63k

https://abovethelaw.com/2017/12/califor ... t-bonuses/


Not to discount the fact that these bonuses are great, but a fed clerkship (or two) is a given for almost all HH associates. Bonuses don't seem as dramatic if everyone's coming in as a third year. i.e.. 50k vs 63k


I guess but I am pretty sure 3rd years are getting around 50% bonuses (105k) given how everyone who works there is always saying their bonuses are insane.


50% is pretty rare and reserved for the top billers (2500+ at least), and IMO, not worth it for the extra hours; but at least they pay up if you do hit that due to multiple trials etc. 30% is more common for juniors with "normal" hours, but 40% is also common if you had good hours and do good work, particularly for mid-levels and the few senior associates. Still kicks the crap out of market, particularly if you are a junior. It gets compressed the more senior you get, though.

As noted, there aren't really any true first years. Most are former clerks and/or mid-level laterals. There's a lot more individual discretion to bonuses (within the 30-50% band) depending on who you work with, your contributions to the firm, etc., even though the firm treats everyone pretty generously.


Good to know. Do you work at HH?

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Re: Bonus Speculation

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Dec 08, 2017 6:00 pm

Morgan Lewis match plus additional "discretionary" bonuses for top performing associates.

anonnymouse

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Re: Bonus Speculation

Postby anonnymouse » Sun Dec 10, 2017 10:15 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Morgan Lewis match plus additional "discretionary" bonuses for top performing associates.

Discretionary bonus was not getting no-offered as a summer.

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Re: Bonus Speculation

Postby anonnymouse » Thu Dec 14, 2017 6:26 pm

The ATL announcement on A&PKS bonuses mentions that S&C bonuses are a black box. That seems new this year?

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Re: Bonus Speculation

Postby BigZuck » Thu Dec 14, 2017 7:31 pm

anonnymouse wrote:The ATL announcement on A&PKS bonuses mentions that S&C bonuses are a black box. That seems new this year?

Fake news bro. Pretty sure that's just an Easter Egg for anyone devoted enough to read about Arnold & Porter bonuses.

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Re: Bonus Speculation

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Dec 15, 2017 2:49 pm

Cahill beat the market again, special bonuses on top of the cravath scale as follows:

2009 50k
2010 40k
2011 40k
2012 25k
2013 25k
2014 20k
2015 15k
2016 10k
2017 0k

Source: https://abovethelaw.com/2017/12/biglaw-firm-goes-over-the-top-of-market-bonuses/
Last edited by Anonymous User on Fri Dec 15, 2017 9:12 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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SmokeytheBear

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Re: Bonus Speculation

Postby SmokeytheBear » Fri Dec 15, 2017 2:56 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Cahill beat the market again, special bonuses on top of the cravath scale as follows:

2009 50k
2010 40k
2011 40k
2012 25k
2013 25k
2014 20k
2015 15k
2016 10k
2017 0k


what the sweet baby jesus

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Yugihoe

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Re: Bonus Speculation

Postby Yugihoe » Fri Dec 15, 2017 9:13 pm

SmokeytheBear wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Cahill beat the market again, special bonuses on top of the cravath scale as follows:

2009 50k
2010 40k
2011 40k
2012 25k
2013 25k
2014 20k
2015 15k
2016 10k
2017 0k


what the sweet baby jesus

Yea it's crazy. First year is making 205k all-in. Almost makes big law worth it.

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cfcm

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Re: Bonus Speculation

Postby cfcm » Tue Dec 19, 2017 8:35 pm

Not great. https://abovethelaw.com/2017/12/firms-c ... eir-peers/

e: the Law360 layout is more visual and easier to understand (at least for me) but may be paywalled. https://www.law360.com/legalindustry/ar ... vath-scale

dabigchina

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Re: Bonus Speculation

Postby dabigchina » Wed Dec 20, 2017 12:56 am

cfcm wrote:Not great. https://abovethelaw.com/2017/12/firms-c ... eir-peers/

e: the Law360 layout is more visual and easier to understand (at least for me) but may be paywalled. https://www.law360.com/legalindustry/ar ... vath-scale

To be fair, making a quasi-biglaw salary in STL seems pretty damned sweet.

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Re: Bonus Speculation

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Dec 20, 2017 1:33 am

Got fugged on my bonus despite billing ~2200 hours as a mid-level - was gonna use this to wipe out my loan balance but since I've been rewarded instead with boomer partners' POCKET CHANGE in lieu of real bone-us, SOFI's investors will continue sipping mai tai's on the beach in the MALDIVES for another few months at my expense. Feels bad, man, feels real bad.

Better update my resume to include that article I "co-wrote" with several partners' earlier this year and instruct the tailor to make my suits fit me again, this is the last straw DAMNIT.

jd20132013

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Re: Bonus Speculation

Postby jd20132013 » Wed Dec 20, 2017 11:39 am

What? What was the reasoning



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