Baker Botts latest US firm to lay off lawyers and staff

Texas firm Baker Botts announced today that it is laying off lawyers and staff due to the reduced demand for its services.

In a statement, managing partner Walt Smith said that despite “a strong balance sheet” and “a conservative approach” to its financial affairs, Baker Botts was not immune from the effects of the recession.

“The recession has been so deep and long lasting … that we regrettably have also had to reduce our lawyer and staff levels through selective layoffs, particularly in those areas most impacted by the reduction in demand,” Smith added.

The firm’s statement, which first appeared on US legal website Abovethelaw.com, did not confirm how many lawyers and staff would be losing their jobs. Calls to the firm were not returned.

However, it has been reported that around 30 associates are expected to be laid off as a result of Baker Botts cost cutting.

Last month, Baker Botts reported a 6.16 per cent increase in global revenue for the past financial year with revenue up from $577.7m in 2007 to $613.3m in 2008 (10 Feb 2009).

Baker Botts also grew average profit per equity partner by 4.6 per cent from $1.3m up to $1.36m in 2008.