SJ Berwin in redundancy talks with 50

<a class=SJ Berwin in redundancy talks with 50″ />SJ Berwin has launched a series of redundancy consultations that could see up to 50 members of London staff lose their jobs.

Four media partners had already agreed to leave the firm at the end of April because film finance is no longer seen as a core practice area. As a result of that decision a further three fee-earning and three support staff roles in that team have also been placed under review.

Two separate consultations have been launched that could result in 20 fee-earning roles plus 20 secretarial and business services jobs cut across a number of departments.

Managing partner Ralph Cohen said: “These are difficult decisions taken in what everyone recognises is a very tough market. We are doing all we can to ensure that anyone impacted by redundancy is treated well and gets appropriate support. It’s hard but measures like this are necessary so we are in a strong position when markets recover.”

All affected staff are being offered outplacement services, according to HR director Karen Chalmers, in addition to enhanced redundancy packages.

“We’re actually offering them what I consider to be fairly generous packages,” she commented.

Turnover at SJ Berwin grew by 14 per cent during the 2007-08 financial year, up from £189m to £215m, while average profit per equity partner (PEP) grew by just 2.4 per cent, to £801,000 from £782,000 the previous year (15 May 2008).

For more on legal redundancies and job prospects, see our Legal Job Watch page.

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