DLA job cuts give rise to enmity between Aussie, UK lawyers

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  • This is again an episode of lazy reporting by the Lawyer and I now feel the urge to speak out in defense of my friends and ex-colleagues at DLA in the UAE. It is absurd to suggest that the "Aussie mafia" are paid anything less than exorbitant salaries, which are completely unjustified by their shameless displays of money grabbing self promotion yet non-existent delivery. That alone is just reason for people in the firm to want these people out - they get paid more and deliver least. Put another way, like Dubai itself they promised the World... and then cancelled the project. These same Aussie 'magic circle' lawyers have brought what had the makings of a successful office to its knees, and have already driven, or are in the process of driving out the heart, soul and life blood of their offices in the UAE. Their lack of judgment in recruitment, financial management, people management and client management is extraordinary, and there are enough ex-DLA lawyers out there (myself included) to verify this. And as for the swipe at the 'incompetence' of the leavers, it is interesting to note the excellent roles now occupied by many if not all ex-DLA people in the region (myself included). Alternatively, why not research the number of ex-DLA people now holding senior in-house positions in the Middle East (myself included) and who actually instruct DLA in the Middle East (I will not)? You will quickly find that the answer will be very few (if any) do instruct DLA and the reason for this will often be cited as the presence of these same Aussie 'magic circle' lawyers. Now isn't that an interesting story....?

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  • Have some guts and post the comments people are writing on this forum (mine included).

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  • This article is just such a load of codswallop and lazy reporting as to be a complete waste of space.

    The fault lines in the firm are entrenched in the partnership itself rather than swiping among the lawyers.... and as for your speculation about what McNair and Co are getting paid you are dead wrong.

    The 'Aussie Mafia' are among the best renumerated partners in the entire DLA partnership.

    And they have not delivered and on top of that the projects team has been the least impacted by redundancies with them all off on secondments or sabbaticals to date rather than getting the chop (so far I expect round three to fall on them heavily though)

    McNair was made an equity partner on the basis that he brought Nakheel with him as a client and Nakheel was a very big client.

    And anyone with half a brain knows what happened to Nakheel.

    Also you completely missed the fact that the head of IT is also an Australian... but perhaps a good omission on your part because Matt Glynn certainly cannot be considered as part of the Aussie Mafia and is the ONLY reason that I would ever instruct DLA on any matter.

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  • Does Andrew Darwin read the Lawyer ... ? Lets hope so and lets hope he doesn't "buy" Australian!

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  • So, the English who have lost their jobs are whinging that it is due to the Australians in ME. Welcome to the real world. DLA Piper is a global firm and not a purely English, so you can expect many nationalities to be involved in management. The suggestion that the reduction in Nakheel work is due to the Aussies mis-management is laughable. I suspect many of the Australian associates kept their jobs at DLA ME because they came originally from top tier firms and are far brighter intellectually and more able than the "standard issue" mid tier English lawyer. After all, most were probably there because you couldn't get a job back home in the top tier firms in the UK. Suck it up guys. Non performers even at associate level get booted in a downturn. And if you want to look at bias, who lost their jobs first in the UK magic circle firms? Australians and New Zealanders who are simply cannon fodder for these firms in the boom times. They are first to go in a down turn.

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  • The new GC of Nakheel is an American from a UK Magic Circle firm. Aussies, who can be pisstakers working overseas, or Poms, who must rank as the laziest nation in the white western alliance - it wont matter....no Nakheel work for DLA!!

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  • What a terrifice read! I don't know what was more fun, reading the story, or reading the comments!! Suffice to say that I'm both an Australian and ex Nakheel employee - thanks to a little thing called the GFC (or perhaps it was to do with a huge miscalculation on Nakheels part with respect to loans, funding and no customers!). Anyway, I don't blame anyone for my job loss, not even the Brits!

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  • I used to work at DLA and have to say that these so called "Aussie Magic Circle" lawyers at DLA are the same as mid market lawyers in London (ie below Silver Circle). They are nothing like Freshfields, Clifford Chance etc. All they know is the tiny legal market in Australia and have no international experience. They may be good in Oz but not worldwide.
    I found them rude and arrogant and quite nasty. They brought all their support staff over and paid them more than lawyers in other firms. They treated their Aussie support staff better than lawyers of other nationalities and undermined those lawyers. That is definitely mafia!!
    The quality of the work was quite poor and they did not know how to approach Gulf problems because they were so used to the Malesons way of doing things. What goes around comes around.

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