Manches votes out traditional lockstep

A partnership vote approved the changeover from a straight lockstep to a more merit-based system.
The firm has also voted to create a new position of managing partner to ease the changeover process when senior partner Alistair Simpson retires in an estimated two year's time. Tax and estate planning partner Stephen Goldstraw has been voted into the new post.
The new remuneration concept is an attempt to retain the firm's highest billers. A source said: “Mid-sized firms unfortunately don't have the level of profits to pay everyone a high salary. This is a way of keeping people that are making a lot of money for the firm.”
Previously, Manches operated a traditional lockstep, where equity partners earned more the longer they stayed at the firm. It is believed that the firm's 30 equity partners will be allowed to draw a small fixed amount every month from the partnership account. This fixed share of the profits will vary according to where the equity partner is in the lockstep, which will be retained for this purpose. Most of the equity partners' remuneration is likely to be based on individual billing, group billing and client introduction.
Lady Helen Ward, a family lawyer, is believed to be Manches' highest biller.