2021 Special Bonuses

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2021 Special Bonuses

Post by Anonymous User » Fri Mar 19, 2021 10:48 am

Word on the street is that Willkie dropped special bonuses today that were equal to last year’s special bonuses. Can anyone confirm?

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Monochromatic Oeuvre

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Re: 2021 Special Bonuses

Post by Monochromatic Oeuvre » Fri Mar 19, 2021 10:58 am

Yep. Same amounts as the fall bonuses last year. Half paid June 30, the other half September 30.

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Re: 2021 Special Bonuses

Post by 2013 » Fri Mar 19, 2021 10:59 am

Interesting. Maybe firms will do this to downplay the 10%+ increases to profits per equity partner that are regularly being reported by amlaw.

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Re: 2021 Special Bonuses

Post by VentureMBA » Fri Mar 19, 2021 11:25 am

I hope a firm follows up by doubling this.

Ultramar vistas

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Re: 2021 Special Bonuses

Post by Ultramar vistas » Fri Mar 19, 2021 11:30 am

Right time to do it, and pretty smartly played by spreading it out. A lot of associates exiting right now for QoL reasons even as firms rack up record profits. This isn’t going to change anyone’s mind who is dead set on leaving, but it might keep the edge case on board for a few more months.

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SummerAssociate1689

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Re: 2021 Special Bonuses

Post by SummerAssociate1689 » Fri Mar 19, 2021 11:35 am

Good to see special bonuses apparently becoming the norm. But worried this may be an excuse for firms to delay hitting 210 starting. With low interest rates, lots of dry powder and capital commitment covenants in SPAC formation, I'm assuming that the next few years are going to be wildly profitable for law firms. Makes no sense not to retain mid levels with higher salaries.

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Re: 2021 Special Bonuses

Post by Anonymous User » Fri Mar 19, 2021 12:10 pm

The timing of this bonus (half paid in June, half in September) makes me wonder if Wilkie is having trouble retaining people, or is proactively worried about an active lateral market.

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lolwutpar

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Re: 2021 Special Bonuses

Post by lolwutpar » Fri Mar 19, 2021 12:42 pm

Ugh come on. Yay bonus, but daddy needs to remodel his kitchen. Hope other firms do not follow suit on the timing.

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Re: 2021 Special Bonuses

Post by Anonymous User » Fri Mar 19, 2021 12:53 pm

My firm is bleeding people (even though they claim it's no more than usual) so I think the payout structure is probably their only means of trying to keep people. Especially with the signing bonuses being thrown around lately.

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Re: 2021 Special Bonuses

Post by Anonymous User » Fri Mar 19, 2021 1:00 pm

My firm has also been losing lots of associates and staff recently. I wonder if folks everywhere are just itching for a change after a grueling year of covid, or if only certain firms are losing people. It's very difficult to tell as an associate.

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Re: 2021 Special Bonuses

Post by Anonymous User » Fri Mar 19, 2021 1:02 pm

cleary corporate is comically understaffed. i am done if we don't match this

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Re: 2021 Special Bonuses

Post by Anonymous User » Fri Mar 19, 2021 1:02 pm

.

MillllerTime

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Re: 2021 Special Bonuses

Post by MillllerTime » Fri Mar 19, 2021 1:46 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Fri Mar 19, 2021 1:02 pm
cleary corporate is comically understaffed. i am done if we don't match this
Same at K&E. Also bleeding midlevels.

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Re: 2021 Special Bonuses

Post by Anonymous User » Fri Mar 19, 2021 1:52 pm

MillllerTime wrote:
Fri Mar 19, 2021 1:46 pm
Anonymous User wrote:
Fri Mar 19, 2021 1:02 pm
cleary corporate is comically understaffed. i am done if we don't match this
Same at K&E. Also bleeding midlevels.
Interesting -- I did hear that K&E is hiring in all practice areas. What's causing so many people to leave?

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Re: 2021 Special Bonuses

Post by JorgeMichael » Fri Mar 19, 2021 2:01 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Fri Mar 19, 2021 1:52 pm
MillllerTime wrote:
Fri Mar 19, 2021 1:46 pm
Anonymous User wrote:
Fri Mar 19, 2021 1:02 pm
cleary corporate is comically understaffed. i am done if we don't match this
Same at K&E. Also bleeding midlevels.
Interesting -- I did hear that K&E is hiring in all practice areas. What's causing so many people to leave?
It’s a toxic place to work.

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Re: 2021 Special Bonuses

Post by Anonymous User » Fri Mar 19, 2021 2:06 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Fri Mar 19, 2021 1:52 pm
MillllerTime wrote:
Fri Mar 19, 2021 1:46 pm
Anonymous User wrote:
Fri Mar 19, 2021 1:02 pm
cleary corporate is comically understaffed. i am done if we don't match this
Same at K&E. Also bleeding midlevels.
Interesting -- I did hear that K&E is hiring in all practice areas. What's causing so many people to leave?
The workload is painfully crushing right now at K&E in every corporate and corp-adjacent practice group. It is just not worth the hit to your mental health to work this much and be available all the time. Think we will see even more defections if no special bonuses announced...

objctnyrhnr

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Re: 2021 Special Bonuses

Post by objctnyrhnr » Fri Mar 19, 2021 2:16 pm

For a firm like K&E that has more business than they know what to do with, is struggling to retain associates, and is desperate for laterals...why not just go ahead and be the first mover to 200k (or even 210)?

Is this just partner greed holding them back, or is there something else to it? From my uninformed perspective, that kind of publicity (both external and internal) sounds like exactly what they might need right now...plus I’m hopeful as I work at a firm that’s a consistent follower but never a market mover.

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Re: 2021 Special Bonuses

Post by Anonymous User » Fri Mar 19, 2021 2:17 pm

KE (at least in my office) also was fairly conservative in summer hiring these past few years. There have been a few times when I (a midlevel) have been wondering where my junior to whom I could farm some tasks went. I think he/she/they just never existed because we didn't expect to be this busy.

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Definitely Not North

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Re: 2021 Special Bonuses

Post by Definitely Not North » Fri Mar 19, 2021 2:31 pm

I'm not sure this is worth it if it means I have to start looking at ATL again

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Re: 2021 Special Bonuses

Post by Anonymous User » Fri Mar 19, 2021 2:32 pm

Hopefully the insane business will allow some mid levels, seniors and NEPs to parlay flexible WFH arrangements. If I had to go to the office, my life would be intolerable now because I wouldn’t have time to see my family and children for many days straights. It’s manageable with WFH.

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Re: 2021 Special Bonuses

Post by Anonymous User » Fri Mar 19, 2021 2:40 pm

objctnyrhnr wrote:
Fri Mar 19, 2021 2:16 pm
For a firm like K&E that has more business than they know what to do with, is struggling to retain associates, and is desperate for laterals...why not just go ahead and be the first mover to 200k (or even 210)?

Is this just partner greed holding them back, or is there something else to it? From my uninformed perspective, that kind of publicity (both external and internal) sounds like exactly what they might need right now...plus I’m hopeful as I work at a firm that’s a consistent follower but never a market mover.
Partners never share the wealth until they absolutely have to. Right now, the quality of life is so bad, and so many people are choosing evenings and weekends over the biglaw salary and the “shattering” Kirkland bonuses (lol) they may actually have to finally let some of the cash trickle down. But I wouldn’t bet on it.

Generally I just think there is a cultural shift happening where younger associates are no longer willing to suffer for the lottery ticket level chances at equity partnership that a V50 now offers. Equity partners got theirs, and then pulled up the ladder behind them, and they need to reset the balance. Will they? Probably not.

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Re: 2021 Special Bonuses

Post by Anonymous User » Fri Mar 19, 2021 4:12 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Fri Mar 19, 2021 2:32 pm
Hopefully the insane business will allow some mid levels, seniors and NEPs to parlay flexible WFH arrangements. If I had to go to the office, my life would be intolerable now because I wouldn’t have time to see my family and children for many days straights. It’s manageable with WFH.
Same.. but I'm a junior. WFH has made me think I will last much longer in this job than I thought I would (if allowed to continue WFH at least a couple days a week).

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Re: 2021 Special Bonuses

Post by Anonymous User » Fri Mar 19, 2021 6:00 pm

Do people feel pretty confident this will get matched? Seems hard to imagine the big NY players would ignore this.

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Re: 2021 Special Bonuses

Post by Anonymous User » Fri Mar 19, 2021 8:32 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Fri Mar 19, 2021 1:52 pm
MillllerTime wrote:
Fri Mar 19, 2021 1:46 pm
Anonymous User wrote:
Fri Mar 19, 2021 1:02 pm
cleary corporate is comically understaffed. i am done if we don't match this
Same at K&E. Also bleeding midlevels.
Interesting -- I did hear that K&E is hiring in all practice areas. What's causing so many people to leave?
We're not losing people, it's that the volume of work is pretty much unprecedented. There is so much and it's coming in from every angle.

I'd imagine other firms have similar volumes of work and my friends at other vault shops in the v50+ bracket are getting non-equity partnership/potential fast-track for junior equity partnership and other incentives dangled in front of them to stay, so harder to bring over people with large one-time bonuses and higher annual bonuses when other firms are just slapping partnership on the table.

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Re: 2021 Special Bonuses

Post by Anonymous User » Fri Mar 19, 2021 8:52 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Fri Mar 19, 2021 1:00 pm
My firm has also been losing lots of associates and staff recently. I wonder if folks everywhere are just itching for a change after a grueling year of covid, or if only certain firms are losing people. It's very difficult to tell as an associate.
My practice group is also losing people, and they haven't been replaced yet. Morale across transactional groups seems pretty abysmal.

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