In international legal news this week, the UK law society takes aim at 'Solicitors from Hell' website, Allen & Overy put the brakes on salaries, UK firm Simmons & Simmons introduces a new tiered partnership model, and US firm Hunton & Williams sees a significant reduction in lawyers following a strategic refocus.
Law Society raises hell for website
The UK Law Society has consulted a leading media silk, Hugh Tomlinson QC, on launching legal action against website Solicitors from Hell, reports The Lawyer. The move comes after Justice Henrique of the High Court said the Law Society and Bar Council should investigate defamation complaints made about the website, which claims to offer consumers a forum to name and shame solicitors.
S&S creates new partner tier
UK firm Simmons & Simmons will introduce a new tier of fixed-share partners in order to give some of the firm's non-equity partners voting rights, reports Legal Week. The three-tier partnership was approved by partners in April and is one of the first important decisions by new managing partner Jeremy Hoyland, who officially took the reins from Mark Dawkins on 1 May.
A&O puts salaries on ice
Allen & Overy UK has again frozen associate salaries following a slow financial year, reports The Lawyer. This means associates will still receive a pay rise by progressing to the next level of the firm's associate lockstep, but the value of each step will remain unchanged from what it was this time last year. In 2009-10, the Magic Circle firm froze its salary bands at 2008-09 levels.
Strategic revamp drives out lawyers
US firm Hunton & Williams will likely see lawyer head-count in its London office drop by almost half by the end of May following a strategic refocus, reports Legal Week. The firm's London City base, which had 36 lawyers in April, will be left with around 20 after a number of departures including five partners leaving for rival US firms. The majority of exiting partners are in the corporate practice.
Firm reaches £100 million milestone
UK firm Stephenson Harwood has broken through the £100 million ($154 million) turnover barrier for the very first time after recording a 16 per cent increase in revenue for the 2010-11 financial year, reports The Lawyer. Total fee income for the year came to £107 million, up from last year's £91.9 million and the £85.1 million recorded in 2008-09.