Redundancies continue to hit mid-market players

Redundancies continue to hit mid-market playersLaw firm redundancies have continued apace, with Addleshaw Goddard, Ashurst Denton Wilde Sapte and SJ Berwin all making cuts.

Ashurst is set to cull 10 equity partners from its global ranks, while at Addleshaws 19 partners were asked to leave on the grounds of overcapacity.

SJ Bewin has launched a series of consultations that could see up to 50 people in London lose their jobs and has also closed its film finance practice, which is now seen as non-core.

Addleshaws managing partner Mark Jones said: “This was a difficult decision, but in common with many other businesses, we believe it’s a necessary response to the economic slowdown and changing re­quirements of some clients.”

This follows on from job cuts at Addleshaws last year, which saw 16 made redundant. Earlier in 2008 the firm had promoted nine to its partnership.

Dentons, meanwhile, has launched its first redundancy consultation since the start of the downturn, with up to 80 members of staff, half of them lawyers, at risk.

Jobs are under review in all fee-earning departments except competition, tax and technology, media and ­telecoms across London and Milton Keynes.

“This decision was taken after Christmas,” said chief executive Howard Morris.
“Since mid-October every firm’s experienced a dramatic shift in its market. We wanted to see how things would be for January and it wasn’t clear until now.”

Dentons’ international offices in the Gulf region and the CIS are not included in this particular review.

LG has launched a ­second round of redundancy talks, with up to 37 jobs at risk.

Howes Percival recently made ;six ;residential ­conveyancers redundant in that office.

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