Shearman swoops for Freshfields star

Shearman & Sterling has raided Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer to hire the firm’s former co-head of dispute resolution and Lloyd’s of London relationship partner Jo Rickard.

Rickard confirmed her resignation from Freshfields’ partnership on Friday (8 September) following a vote by Shearman’s partnership on the Thursday evening.

Speculation over Rickard’s future has been rife since it was revealed that 30 partners were taking advantage of the favourable terms offered by Freshfields before it introduces changes to its pension scheme.

It is understood that she was sought after by other US firms, including Latham & Watkins and Weil Gotshal & Manges.

A partner at Freshfields since 1981, Rickard was co-head of the firm’s dispute resolution practice until 1 January 2006, when she was replaced by Ian Terry as part of a management reshuffle undertaken by new senior partner Guy Morton.

Four other Freshfields partners have also announced plans to retire from its partnership to join LeBoeuf Lamb Greene & MacRae on 1 November to lock in their entitlement to the firm’s old pensions package (, 4 September).