R&W to cut links with Paris office

Rogers & Wells is severing its ties with its Paris office, which has been attempting to opt out of the firm's merger with Clifford Chance.

The Lawyer understands that under internal arrangements Rogers & Wells is to sever its links with its Paris practice before the date of the merger on 1 January 2000.

The Paris office, headed by Alexander Marquardt, has been offering itself to other US firms, and was in discussions with Latham & Watkins, as revealed in The Lawyer (14 June). These talks broke down three weeks ago.

The operation is an attractive prospect for a US firm without a Paris office, as it would allow a firm to overcome the French bar's restrictive rules on foreign firms.

Weil Gotshal & Manges is also rumoured to have had talks with the Paris office, though Mike Francies, joint head of Weil Gotshal's London office, denies this.