Baker & McKenzie has made up to 20 associates redundant in the London office and put the entire support staff under review.
All of the 285 support staff and secretaries in the City office have been told their jobs are on the line, although the firm would not confirm how many would be laid off.
Most of the associate jobs losses are understood to have been in the corporate practice. The affected lawyers were offered two months severance pay as part of the redundancy package.
London managing partner Gary Senior said: “We’ve seen a deterioration in business levels in London since the autumn.”
“We have reviewed, and will continue to review, our legal department utilisation levels and as a result of that there have regrettably been redundancies.”
The City office has been hit harder than the US practice because a larger portion of its revenues come from M&A activity.
At the start of the year, Baker & McKenzie laid off six associates in New York because of the economic downturn (TheLawyer.com, 9 January).
For more on legal redundancies and job prospects, see our Legal Job Watch page.