Mid-Year Bonuses

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cheaptilts

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Re: Mid-Year Bonuses

Postby cheaptilts » Tue Jun 04, 2019 10:13 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:TBH I keep advising summer associates at my firm to go elsewhere while they still have options. Hours minimums on bonuses (and average hours last year per associate was below such minimum) yet still claims to be top-of-market comp. Absolute joke.

Also, we lost some laterals to Gunderson this year. Those prescient associates must be laughin' now.


I took your (or someone like you's) advice and I am laughing.

Also, we genuinely hope everyone matches.

Why was this person outed? Didn't he/she just disclose that he/she works at Gunderson?
Last edited by QContinuum on Tue Jun 04, 2019 10:16 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: Edited to preserve quoted poster's anonymity.

QContinuum

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Re: Mid-Year Bonuses

Postby QContinuum » Tue Jun 04, 2019 10:16 pm

cheaptilts wrote:Why was this person outed? Didn't he/she just disclose that he/she works at Gunderson?

Good point, I had mistakenly read the "advice taken" to be the part about advising summers to go elsewhere if possible to avoid hours minimums etc.

I've also edited your post above to preserve the reanoned poster's anonymity.

JohnnieSockran

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Re: Mid-Year Bonuses

Postby JohnnieSockran » Wed Jun 05, 2019 10:28 am

Do we lose hope after this week?
Last edited by QContinuum on Wed Jun 05, 2019 11:10 am, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: Outed for anon abuse.

NoLongerALurker

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Re: Mid-Year Bonuses

Postby NoLongerALurker » Wed Jun 05, 2019 3:41 pm

I have officially lost hope.

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NotASpecialSnowflake

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Re: Mid-Year Bonuses

Postby NotASpecialSnowflake » Wed Jun 05, 2019 4:35 pm

Didn’t someone mention Kirkland was having a firm-wide meeting on the 12th? I think it’s too early to give up hope, Gunderson isn’t paying this until 6/30.

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Re: Mid-Year Bonuses

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jun 05, 2019 10:22 pm

NotASpecialSnowflake wrote:Didn’t someone mention Kirkland was having a firm-wide meeting on the 12th? I think it’s too early to give up hope, Gunderson isn’t paying this until 6/30.


The event will feature guest presenters from one of Kirkland's clients. I very highly doubt that the firm is going to announce summer bonuses in front of their clients.

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Re: Mid-Year Bonuses

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jun 05, 2019 10:50 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
NotASpecialSnowflake wrote:Didn’t someone mention Kirkland was having a firm-wide meeting on the 12th? I think it’s too early to give up hope, Gunderson isn’t paying this until 6/30.


The event will feature guest presenters from one of Kirkland's clients. I very highly doubt that the firm is going to announce summer bonuses in front of their clients.


It's on the 11th. The presentation is from Citi Private Bank law firm group so will probably have data about our profitability compared to other firms. TBH it would not be crazy for them to announce bonuses there, though I know from reviewing a recent lateral offer letter that K&E is not mentioning summer bonuses in its offer materials.

K&E associates who would like to ask a question, such as when/whether we'll match Gunderson (and if not, why we still claim to pay above market) can email associatetownhall@kirkland.com.

dabigchina

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Re: Mid-Year Bonuses

Postby dabigchina » Thu Jun 06, 2019 12:22 am

NoLongerALurker wrote:I have officially lost hope.

The dream is dead, ladies and gents.

BlackAndOrange84

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Re: Mid-Year Bonuses

Postby BlackAndOrange84 » Thu Jun 06, 2019 12:12 pm

Image

JohnnieSockran

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Re: Mid-Year Bonuses

Postby JohnnieSockran » Thu Jun 06, 2019 12:26 pm

I don't understand why firms wouldn't give out summer bonuses when it sounds like a lot of firms have been having such a great year. My firm specifically told us that we are having the best year in firm history.

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LaLiLuLeLo

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Re: Mid-Year Bonuses

Postby LaLiLuLeLo » Thu Jun 06, 2019 12:55 pm

Partners: why less money when more money do trick

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Re: Mid-Year Bonuses

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Jun 06, 2019 2:24 pm

JohnnieSockran wrote:I don't understand why firms wouldn't give out summer bonuses when it sounds like a lot of firms have been having such a great year. My firm specifically told us that we are having the best year in firm history.


I think people fundamentally misunderstand how bonuses, and compensation generally, works in biglaw. Partners aren’t going to pay associates more because the firm is doing well. They will only pay associates more if they have to—because they won’t get new associates, associates will leave, etc. So when a firm raises, it’s not out of the goodness of their heart or because of financial performance. It’s to improve morale, get publicity, impress law students, etc. Then other firms match because they have to in order to stay competitive, not because they want to. All of the raises from $160 (and before) are because of matching a first mover. That’s the impetus, not anything internal to the firm. That is certainly true at my V10.

2013

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Re: Mid-Year Bonuses

Postby 2013 » Thu Jun 06, 2019 4:38 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
JohnnieSockran wrote:I don't understand why firms wouldn't give out summer bonuses when it sounds like a lot of firms have been having such a great year. My firm specifically told us that we are having the best year in firm history.


I think people fundamentally misunderstand how bonuses, and compensation generally, works in biglaw. Partners aren’t going to pay associates more because the firm is doing well. They will only pay associates more if they have to—because they won’t get new associates, associates will leave, etc. So when a firm raises, it’s not out of the goodness of their heart or because of financial performance. It’s to improve morale, get publicity, impress law students, etc. Then other firms match because they have to in order to stay competitive, not because they want to. All of the raises from $160 (and before) are because of matching a first mover. That’s the impetus, not anything internal to the firm. That is certainly true at my V10.


To add to this, many of the firms that are capable of paying large bonuses, top salary, etc. are highly leveraged (equity partner:everyone else). When associates get raises/bonuses, nonequity partners and counsel will want to get in on that too. So, each partner ends up seeing hundreds of thousands of dollars less when one of these one off bonuses happens. Obviously not a problem when you’re bringing in millions, but yeah. Not out of the goodness of their hearts

Npret

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Re: Mid-Year Bonuses

Postby Npret » Thu Jun 06, 2019 4:57 pm

2013 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
JohnnieSockran wrote:I don't understand why firms wouldn't give out summer bonuses when it sounds like a lot of firms have been having such a great year. My firm specifically told us that we are having the best year in firm history.


I think people fundamentally misunderstand how bonuses, and compensation generally, works in biglaw. Partners aren’t going to pay associates more because the firm is doing well. They will only pay associates more if they have to—because they won’t get new associates, associates will leave, etc. So when a firm raises, it’s not out of the goodness of their heart or because of financial performance. It’s to improve morale, get publicity, impress law students, etc. Then other firms match because they have to in order to stay competitive, not because they want to. All of the raises from $160 (and before) are because of matching a first mover. That’s the impetus, not anything internal to the firm. That is certainly true at my V10.


To add to this, many of the firms that are capable of paying large bonuses, top salary, etc. are highly leveraged (equity partner:everyone else). When associates get raises/bonuses, nonequity partners and counsel will want to get in on that too. So, each partner ends up seeing hundreds of thousands of dollars less when one of these one off bonuses happens. Obviously not a problem when you’re bringing in millions, but yeah. Not out of the goodness of their hearts


All of this but also don’t be so quick to believe everything the firm says with regard to “best year in history,” etc.

Not disputing it, just take it with a grain of salt.

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purpletiger

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Re: Mid-Year Bonuses

Postby purpletiger » Thu Jun 06, 2019 5:17 pm

2013 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
JohnnieSockran wrote:I don't understand why firms wouldn't give out summer bonuses when it sounds like a lot of firms have been having such a great year. My firm specifically told us that we are having the best year in firm history.


I think people fundamentally misunderstand how bonuses, and compensation generally, works in biglaw. Partners aren’t going to pay associates more because the firm is doing well. They will only pay associates more if they have to—because they won’t get new associates, associates will leave, etc. So when a firm raises, it’s not out of the goodness of their heart or because of financial performance. It’s to improve morale, get publicity, impress law students, etc. Then other firms match because they have to in order to stay competitive, not because they want to. All of the raises from $160 (and before) are because of matching a first mover. That’s the impetus, not anything internal to the firm. That is certainly true at my V10.


To add to this, many of the firms that are capable of paying large bonuses, top salary, etc. are highly leveraged (equity partner:everyone else). When associates get raises/bonuses, nonequity partners and counsel will want to get in on that too. So, each partner ends up seeing hundreds of thousands of dollars less when one of these one off bonuses happens. Obviously not a problem when you’re bringing in millions, but yeah. Not out of the goodness of their hearts


Yeah, like, the standard economic explanation is that an employer will pay as low as the market can bear. Firms will only pay the bonuses if someone they see as a competitor is a first-mover and decides to issue them. Clearly they don’t see Gunderson as much of a competitive threat. Perhaps even Kirkland wouldn’t be enough to get the V10 to move.

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Re: Mid-Year Bonuses

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Jun 06, 2019 7:22 pm

Lol calm down guys, cravath partner meeting happens on Monday.

JohnnieSockran

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Re: Mid-Year Bonuses

Postby JohnnieSockran » Thu Jun 06, 2019 7:32 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Lol calm down guys, cravath partner meeting happens on Monday.


This is the kind of good news we need.

LaChusa2020

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Re: Mid-Year Bonuses

Postby LaChusa2020 » Thu Jun 06, 2019 10:06 pm

purpletiger wrote:
2013 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
JohnnieSockran wrote:I don't understand why firms wouldn't give out summer bonuses when it sounds like a lot of firms have been having such a great year. My firm specifically told us that we are having the best year in firm history.


I think people fundamentally misunderstand how bonuses, and compensation generally, works in biglaw. Partners aren’t going to pay associates more because the firm is doing well. They will only pay associates more if they have to—because they won’t get new associates, associates will leave, etc. So when a firm raises, it’s not out of the goodness of their heart or because of financial performance. It’s to improve morale, get publicity, impress law students, etc. Then other firms match because they have to in order to stay competitive, not because they want to. All of the raises from $160 (and before) are because of matching a first mover. That’s the impetus, not anything internal to the firm. That is certainly true at my V10.


To add to this, many of the firms that are capable of paying large bonuses, top salary, etc. are highly leveraged (equity partner:everyone else). When associates get raises/bonuses, nonequity partners and counsel will want to get in on that too. So, each partner ends up seeing hundreds of thousands of dollars less when one of these one off bonuses happens. Obviously not a problem when you’re bringing in millions, but yeah. Not out of the goodness of their hearts


Yeah, like, the standard economic explanation is that an employer will pay as low as the market can bear. Firms will only pay the bonuses if someone they see as a competitor is a first-mover and decides to issue them. Clearly they don’t see Gunderson as much of a competitive threat. Perhaps even Kirkland wouldn’t be enough to get the V10 to move.


This all correct except the idea the rest of the V10 wouldn’t match Kirkland. Kirkland is a flat out peer of the V10 firms across many markets and practice groups, they would not let Kirkland outpay them. Gunderson is a different story we have to hope for a cascade of competitors and we need someone to start it.

impactplayer

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Re: Mid-Year Bonuses

Postby impactplayer » Thu Jun 06, 2019 10:48 pm

LaChusa2020 wrote:
purpletiger wrote:
2013 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
JohnnieSockran wrote:I don't understand why firms wouldn't give out summer bonuses when it sounds like a lot of firms have been having such a great year. My firm specifically told us that we are having the best year in firm history.


I think people fundamentally misunderstand how bonuses, and compensation generally, works in biglaw. Partners aren’t going to pay associates more because the firm is doing well. They will only pay associates more if they have to—because they won’t get new associates, associates will leave, etc. So when a firm raises, it’s not out of the goodness of their heart or because of financial performance. It’s to improve morale, get publicity, impress law students, etc. Then other firms match because they have to in order to stay competitive, not because they want to. All of the raises from $160 (and before) are because of matching a first mover. That’s the impetus, not anything internal to the firm. That is certainly true at my V10.


To add to this, many of the firms that are capable of paying large bonuses, top salary, etc. are highly leveraged (equity partner:everyone else). When associates get raises/bonuses, nonequity partners and counsel will want to get in on that too. So, each partner ends up seeing hundreds of thousands of dollars less when one of these one off bonuses happens. Obviously not a problem when you’re bringing in millions, but yeah. Not out of the goodness of their hearts


Yeah, like, the standard economic explanation is that an employer will pay as low as the market can bear. Firms will only pay the bonuses if someone they see as a competitor is a first-mover and decides to issue them. Clearly they don’t see Gunderson as much of a competitive threat. Perhaps even Kirkland wouldn’t be enough to get the V10 to move.


This all correct except the idea the rest of the V10 wouldn’t match Kirkland. Kirkland is a flat out peer of the V10 firms across many markets and practice groups, they would not let Kirkland outpay them. Gunderson is a different story we have to hope for a cascade of competitors and we need someone to start it.


Yeah, am I missing something here? Isn't K&E a V10 firm to begin with? Of course the rest of the V10 would match if they did summer bonuses.

ghostoftraynor

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Re: Mid-Year Bonuses

Postby ghostoftraynor » Thu Jun 06, 2019 11:54 pm

Yes, KE is a v10. I think the thought is KE already "shatters" the market, so others wouldn't feel compelled to follow them. Also, doubt KE will be a market leader because it just makes shattering the market that much more expensive.

Hopefully, Cravath will exercise leadership and bring bonus upon us.

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VulcanVulcanVulcan

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Re: Mid-Year Bonuses

Postby VulcanVulcanVulcan » Thu Jun 06, 2019 11:55 pm

impactplayer wrote:
LaChusa2020 wrote:
purpletiger wrote:
2013 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
JohnnieSockran wrote:I don't understand why firms wouldn't give out summer bonuses when it sounds like a lot of firms have been having such a great year. My firm specifically told us that we are having the best year in firm history.


I think people fundamentally misunderstand how bonuses, and compensation generally, works in biglaw. Partners aren’t going to pay associates more because the firm is doing well. They will only pay associates more if they have to—because they won’t get new associates, associates will leave, etc. So when a firm raises, it’s not out of the goodness of their heart or because of financial performance. It’s to improve morale, get publicity, impress law students, etc. Then other firms match because they have to in order to stay competitive, not because they want to. All of the raises from $160 (and before) are because of matching a first mover. That’s the impetus, not anything internal to the firm. That is certainly true at my V10.


To add to this, many of the firms that are capable of paying large bonuses, top salary, etc. are highly leveraged (equity partner:everyone else). When associates get raises/bonuses, nonequity partners and counsel will want to get in on that too. So, each partner ends up seeing hundreds of thousands of dollars less when one of these one off bonuses happens. Obviously not a problem when you’re bringing in millions, but yeah. Not out of the goodness of their hearts


Yeah, like, the standard economic explanation is that an employer will pay as low as the market can bear. Firms will only pay the bonuses if someone they see as a competitor is a first-mover and decides to issue them. Clearly they don’t see Gunderson as much of a competitive threat. Perhaps even Kirkland wouldn’t be enough to get the V10 to move.


This all correct except the idea the rest of the V10 wouldn’t match Kirkland. Kirkland is a flat out peer of the V10 firms across many markets and practice groups, they would not let Kirkland outpay them. Gunderson is a different story we have to hope for a cascade of competitors and we need someone to start it.


Yeah, am I missing something here? Isn't K&E a V10 firm to begin with? Of course the rest of the V10 would match if they did summer bonuses.


Kirkland pays above-Cravath bonuses every year and the V10 does not match those bonuses. The V10 New York firms match bonus increases by each other, but not Kirkland.

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NotASpecialSnowflake

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Re: Mid-Year Bonuses

Postby NotASpecialSnowflake » Fri Jun 07, 2019 7:52 am

Also, many economists are predicting a recession in the next year. No firm wants to give a bonus right before a recession hits and the firm is forced to layoff tons of people. 2008 is still very fresh in partner’s minds, and the fact that the stock market hasn’t done well over the past two weeks thanks to moronic tariffs hasn’t helped.

I personally think that “justification” is BS, but that’s probably what partners are saying right now, although IMO it’s just greed.

LaChusa2020

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Re: Mid-Year Bonuses

Postby LaChusa2020 » Fri Jun 07, 2019 12:54 pm

VulcanVulcanVulcan wrote:
impactplayer wrote:
LaChusa2020 wrote:
purpletiger wrote:
2013 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
JohnnieSockran wrote:I don't understand why firms wouldn't give out summer bonuses when it sounds like a lot of firms have been having such a great year. My firm specifically told us that we are having the best year in firm history.


I think people fundamentally misunderstand how bonuses, and compensation generally, works in biglaw. Partners aren’t going to pay associates more because the firm is doing well. They will only pay associates more if they have to—because they won’t get new associates, associates will leave, etc. So when a firm raises, it’s not out of the goodness of their heart or because of financial performance. It’s to improve morale, get publicity, impress law students, etc. Then other firms match because they have to in order to stay competitive, not because they want to. All of the raises from $160 (and before) are because of matching a first mover. That’s the impetus, not anything internal to the firm. That is certainly true at my V10.


To add to this, many of the firms that are capable of paying large bonuses, top salary, etc. are highly leveraged (equity partner:everyone else). When associates get raises/bonuses, nonequity partners and counsel will want to get in on that too. So, each partner ends up seeing hundreds of thousands of dollars less when one of these one off bonuses happens. Obviously not a problem when you’re bringing in millions, but yeah. Not out of the goodness of their hearts


Yeah, like, the standard economic explanation is that an employer will pay as low as the market can bear. Firms will only pay the bonuses if someone they see as a competitor is a first-mover and decides to issue them. Clearly they don’t see Gunderson as much of a competitive threat. Perhaps even Kirkland wouldn’t be enough to get the V10 to move.


This all correct except the idea the rest of the V10 wouldn’t match Kirkland. Kirkland is a flat out peer of the V10 firms across many markets and practice groups, they would not let Kirkland outpay them. Gunderson is a different story we have to hope for a cascade of competitors and we need someone to start it.


Yeah, am I missing something here? Isn't K&E a V10 firm to begin with? Of course the rest of the V10 would match if they did summer bonuses.


Kirkland pays above-Cravath bonuses every year and the V10 does not match those bonuses. The V10 New York firms match bonus increases by each other, but not Kirkland.



Kirkland does not pay above market bonuses. Kirkland pays cravath with some extra on top for very high billers. Lots of firms do that formally or informally. Market is what you do for all associates in good standing/all associates on track to do 2000 etc and in that respect a behemoth like Kirkland is not going to be above market the way wachtell, certain lit boutiques and now apparently Gunderson...are

eastcoast_iub

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Re: Mid-Year Bonuses

Postby eastcoast_iub » Fri Jun 07, 2019 1:03 pm

LaChusa2020 wrote:Kirkland does not pay above market bonuses. Kirkland pays cravath with some extra on top for very high billers. Lots of firms do that formally or informally. Market is what you do for all associates in good standing/all associates on track to do 2000 etc and in that respect a behemoth like Kirkland is not going to be above market the way wachtell, certain lit boutiques and now apparently Gunderson...are


False. Standard bonus (for which there is no minimum) is slightly above market and goes up proportionally for hours over 2,000 (with qualitative factors potentially contributing extra as well for 4th-6th years). Bonuses generally fall within the 1.25x-1.75x range for most people.

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Re: Mid-Year Bonuses

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Jun 07, 2019 1:19 pm

eastcoast_iub wrote:
LaChusa2020 wrote:Kirkland does not pay above market bonuses. Kirkland pays cravath with some extra on top for very high billers. Lots of firms do that formally or informally. Market is what you do for all associates in good standing/all associates on track to do 2000 etc and in that respect a behemoth like Kirkland is not going to be above market the way wachtell, certain lit boutiques and now apparently Gunderson...are


False. Standard bonus (for which there is no minimum) is slightly above market and goes up proportionally for hours over 2,000 (with qualitative factors potentially contributing extra as well for 4th-6th years). Bonuses generally fall within the 1.25x-1.75x range for most people.


Standard K&E bonus is market. Two years ago, the base was 5% above market, but that was an exception and not the case last year. You earn more(particularly as a junior) based on hours billed. As you highlight, as a mid-level/senior associate, the merit portion of your bonus is the more important factor in determining your payout.



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