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Slaughter and May has elected four new partners in the latest promotions round, with three quarters of the partnerships being handed to women.
This is almost a complete turnaround from last year when all five of the new partners were men and follows hot on the heels on Frances Murphy being announced as the firm's first-ever female head of corporate.
Practice partner-in-waiting Paul Olney said: "From our perspective the decisions we make on new partners and their identities are based solely on merit. On this particular occasion we had three particularly good women and one particularly good man so that's how it ended up."
In another turnaround, the firm's flagship corporate practice has only gained one new partner - Rebecca Cousin. The competition practice has been unusually successful with two promotees - Sarah Cardell and Isabel Taylor. It is a number of years since the competition practice has received any new partners. The fourth new partner is Ben Kingsley, who is a financial regulatory lawyer.
Overall, the total number of promotions at Slaughters has been steadily falling over the past two years. Of last year's five promotions two were corporate, two were finance and one was tax. At that stage the finance practice had not recevied a new partner for four years.
In the previous year Slaughters made up a bumper eight new partners with most practice areas gaining at least one. Corporate received the largest share at three with litigation, employment, pensions, real estate and tax gaining one new partner each.