Over 5,000 Lawyers Laid Off During Past Year
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A recent survey done of the top 250 law firms in the U.S. shows a loss of over 5,000 lawyers over the past year.

5,259 lawyers, to be exact, were laid off, which amounts to a drop of 4 percent. This is the largest decline ever reported by the National Law Journal, which started collecting information in 1978. Since that time, there has only ever been two other drops recorded: one equaling less than 1 percent in 1993, and a 1 percent decline in 1992.

While the associates dropped by 8.7 percents at the large firms, partners increased by just under 1 percent.
According to law firm consultant Ward Bower, “The cuts made were done primarily to preserve workloads for partners. It suggests that work done by partners is work that associates could do.”


Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson showed the largest loss, percentage-wise, with a drop of 26.4 percent, or 168 lawyers.

Latham and Watkins saw the highest amount of lawyers, by number, get the axe. That firm saw 444 lawyers lose their job, which, for the firm, equaled a drop of 19.1 percent.

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