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DLA Piper Freezes Associate Salaries
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DLA Piper associates were greeted with this email on Friday:

2008 has indisputably been one of the most challenging economic periods in recent history. DLA Piper, because of its global platform and practice diversification, is well-positioned competitively and financially to weather this downturn, but neither we nor our clients are immune from its impacts. This difficult business environment is certain to continue in 2009, and as a matter of prudent management, the firm will not increase associate salaries for 2009 in the U.S. Associates moving to the next class year will continue to receive the same base compensation as they received in 2008. Consistent with our past practice, decisions for regions outside the US will be made on a market by market basis.

We have exceptional associates and we value you greatly. We will continue to reward outstanding performance through our bonus program. Bonuses for 2008 will be determined and paid in late January or early February. The 2009 Bonus Program will be the subject of our usual Executive Committee review and discussion process, and its specifics will be announced at some point in the first quarter.


We are grateful for the market opportunities DLA Piper has, and for the loyalty of our clients. Our primary purpose in 2009 should be remaining close to them and understanding their business and legal needs in order to provide them with exceptional service.

According to Above the Law, this isn’t helping with DLA Piper’s reputation for being notoriously cheap:

Well, it’s only been an hour, but I think it’s a terrible move. DLAP already has a reputation as a scrimper among the top-50 – this will not help.

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