Spain’s Cuatrecasas has made a volte-face on the issue of salaried partners by reintroducing the rank less than two years after attempting to phase it out.
The firm has this year brought back the salaried band and made up a number of fixed-income partners.
In 2002, Cuatrecasas launched a review of its internal structure, during which it attempted to cease promoting assistants to salaried level, with the aim of phasing out the band entirely.
Under the pre-salaried system, associates took up to 14 years to reach equity. As part of the new system, promotion to equity is based on merit. Partners can spend anywhere between one and 10 years in the salaried band.
Cuatrecasas currently has around 25 salaried partners and 70 equity partners.
One source insisted the firm had never formally abandoned the concept of salaried partners, but had acknowledged the desirability of having all partners in the equity. “[Cuatrecasas] tried, like many other firms, to avoid the salaried partner step,” said the source.
He added: “The firm arrived at the conclusion that there are steps to becoming an equity partner. Cuatrecasas is simply reintroducing one more step.”