Chadbourne & Parke Moves Forward After Rescinding Job Offers
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Chadbourne & Parke’s decision last month not to offer jobs to 11 deferred associates from 2009 obviously didn’t sit well with those affected. Nor does the firm’s plan to move on in its summer program recruiting. The New York Law Journal spoke with four of those involved as well as the firm’s head of recruiting to provide more insight into the move.

According to the report, Arent Fox and Winstead are the only other biglaw firms known to have rescinded offers to deferred associates of 2009. Yet Scott Berson, a partner and the firm’s head of recruiting, said that while the business decision “was not something we took lightly at all…we really don’t think we’re standing out in any particular way.

“We handled an issue every New York law firm was handling, and we felt this was the most equitable way to do it given the firm’s circumstances and students’ circumstances, both of which were taken into account,” Berson told NYLJ.


The firm said it will be back recruiting on law school campuses in August, but at least one of the deferred associates finds that particularly unfair.

“I would hope that if they were going to end our relationship they would have looked to end their future classes,” the lawyer said.

The firm’s reasoning, according to Berson, is not having a summer program would potentially hurt the firm’s law-school pipeline.

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“We thought not having a summer program or drastically reducing a summer program would send the wrong message, because we’re very optimistic about our future,” Berson said. “We don’t want to cut ties with other law schools or at least leave the impression with law schools we’re drastically changing our policies about recruiting.”

Citing a report by the National Association for Law Placement, the NYLJ reports a total of 2,400 law school graduates were deferred last year when in the midst of the recession

New York’s Chadbourne & Parke employs 400 lawyers and tax advisers in 13 offices in nine countries. Chadbourne is best known for its global practice in project finance and energy, international insurance and reinsurance practice, multi-jurisdictional litigation, and corporate transactions.


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