A&O ditches local partner status as part of rationalisation process

Allen & Overy (A&O) is overhauling its band of salaried partners in a move that will result in the abolition of local partner status.

The move follows a review launched last summer aimed at rationalising the different categories of salaried partners at the magic circle firm.

The new structure, which is expected to come into force on 1 May, will result in the creation of just three categories of salaried partner.

Prior to the review, A&O had no fewer than six categories of salaried partner, because over time new bands were introduced on an ad hoc basis to comply with tax rules in different jurisdictions, or due to partners’ personal circumstances.

The three categories of salaried partner comprise: those who start with one point and after two years, subject to a partnership vote, move into the equity; those who start with one point but take longer to progress to the equity; and those who stay on one point throughout.

An A&O partner said the changes have been welcomed by salaried partners at the firm and added that, historically, there was no homogenous approach to how and when partners entered the equity.

An A&O spokesperson confirmed the changes and said that the purpose of the review was to tidy up the band of salaried partners and to introduce uniformity across different jurisdictions. The spokesperson added that all local partners will become salaried partners under the new model.