Camerons withholds staff bonus for second year

CMS Cameron McKenna has withheld the firmwide bonus payable to all staff for the second year running after the firm missed its turnover target.

The performance-related bonus, usually paid to all staff below partner level, is 5 per cent of annual salary plus an extra 0.5 per cent for every £1m of revenue above the target figure.

The quarterly associate time recording (ATR) bonus was still paid as usual to associates who recorded 400 billable hours in the last quarter. However, an additional performance-linked bonus available to senior support staff has not been paid.

In addition, the City firm confirmed that it was examining a move to a merit-based approach to associate bonuses, mirroring changes that have taken place at a number of top firms in recent months.

Camerons posted a sharp drop in profits for the second year running last month (28 May 2010). Turnover dropped from £240m to £214m, while profit per equity partner (PEP) fell 18 per cent to £453,000 from £554,000 in 2008-09.