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leafs_law

CV19 Lawyer Compensation/Layoffs

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I think I am busier now working from home than I was at the office! 

Work keeps getting assigned and urgent matters are popping up to the point that I have pushed my "busy" work to the very bottom of the list. I have absolutely no idea when I will get to my non-urgent, loose deadline matters. 💩

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Small firm in a small SW Ontario city. 

I was very worried as I just started at this firm in January (after completely uprooting my life and moving). I'm not very busy with files of my own yet. I have a few, but most of the work I'm doing is on other lawyers' files, and those other lawyers are now seeing their work slow down significantly so could easily take on what I've been given. 

They're talking about reducing assistants' hours, although they've promised full pay for at least the next month.

They've told me they want me for the long haul and we're going to stick it out. I feel for them, and still think there's a chance that could change, but I'm very grateful right now. 

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Heard through the grapevine that a mid-size Bay St firm is reducing salaries for associates (-15%) and partners (-20%).

 

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I'd be curious to see if firms have done the calculus between doing this salary reduction, which could be considered constructive dismissal, and the number of lawyers who might just take  a severance package in lieu. But I guess they're counting on the fact that no one wants to be out there right now in this economic climate...

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36 minutes ago, Rearden said:

Heard through the grapevine that a mid-size Bay St firm is reducing salaries for associates (-15%) and partners (-20%).

 

Frankly shocked this hasn't happened yet at my firm.

Though one partner at my office pointed out that March is historically a slow month due to March break, and that our March numbers may actually be higher than usual because nobody is going on vacation.  

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My firm laid off two people but I have a suspicion that they were using COVID-19 as an excuse 

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On 3/27/2020 at 3:30 PM, Rearden said:

Heard through the grapevine that a mid-size Bay St firm is reducing salaries for associates (-15%) and partners (-20%).

 

Remember when we were salivating about associate raises?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Is anyone part of a firm where there have been salary increases or new hires in response to tackling the pandemic? I would imagine the area of employment law is booming and some firms would continue with the trend of salary increases to signal their financial strength to employees. Curious to know if anyone has direct experience working at a firm where management changes have been positive rather than negative (i.e., layoffs and comp cuts). 

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3 hours ago, FDole2013 said:

Is anyone part of a firm where there have been salary increases or new hires in response to tackling the pandemic? I would imagine the area of employment law is booming and some firms would continue with the trend of salary increases to signal their financial strength to employees. Curious to know if anyone has direct experience working at a firm where management changes have been positive rather than negative (i.e., layoffs and comp cuts). 

Nah

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15 minutes ago, leafs_law said:

One of the big dogs (national, 110 scale) has cut associate salaries by 10%. 

I heard a rumour about this too. It was surprising given the 75% wage subsidy announcement that is available to all employers. One would think that a big firm wouldn’t need to cut associate salaries except during a severe business downturn (in which case I assume there would be a 30% revenue hit that would give the firm access to the wage subsidy). Then again, no one knows the final details about the wage subsidy program yet... 

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6 minutes ago, theSquibandtheEye said:

I heard a rumour about this too. It was surprising given the 75% wage subsidy announcement that is available to all employers. One would think that a big firm wouldn’t need to cut associate salaries except during a severe business downturn (in which case I assume there would be a 30% revenue hit that would give the firm access to the wage subsidy). Then again, no one knows the final details about the wage subsidy program yet... 

The subsidy isn't available to all employers - the government website uses the term small businesses. I would be shocked if national firms will be supported at all by the subsidy, let alone at 75% - that would be wild. 

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1 minute ago, WindsorHopeful said:

The subsidy isn't available to all employers - the government website uses the term small businesses. I would be shocked if national firms will be supported at all by the subsidy, let alone at 75% - that would be wild. 

The PM was pretty clear during his press conference today that it’d be available to all employers - regardless of size - so long as the employer saw a 30% decrease in revenues. (https://business.financialpost.com/news/economy/canadian-press-newsalert-large-business-non-profits-charities-all-eligible-for-wage-subsidy-trudeau-says)

 

The original 10% subsidy was limited to SMEs. But this revamped larger one does not appear to be size restricted.

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Heard a national firm laid off about 60 staff Canada-wide, and hearing of several mid-size firms laying off staff (and a few associates) in Vancouver.

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1 hour ago, leafs_law said:

One of the big dogs (national, 110 scale) has cut associate salaries by 10%. 

 

7 minutes ago, hitman9172 said:

Heard a national firm laid off about 60 staff Canada-wide, and hearing of several mid-size firms laying off staff (and a few associates) in Vancouver.

Care to share which firms?

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So... what do firms look at when deciding to let someone go in a situation like the one we have right now? Practice group? Billed hours? Seniority? Book of business? Or is it a little bit of everything including some eenie meenie miney mo?

 

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4 hours ago, hitman9172 said:

Heard a national firm laid off about 60 staff Canada-wide, and hearing of several mid-size firms laying off staff (and a few associates) in Vancouver.

Are these temporary layoffs or permanent?

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28 minutes ago, Deadpool said:

Are these temporary layoffs or permanent?

Temporary from what I hear, but things are still foggy. I don’t want to name any firms until I get full confirmation.

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11 hours ago, leafs_law said:

One of the big dogs (national, 110 scale) has cut associate salaries by 10%. 

NRF (or so it is rumored). 

 

11 hours ago, theSquibandtheEye said:

I heard a rumour about this too. It was surprising given the 75% wage subsidy announcement that is available to all employers. One would think that a big firm wouldn’t need to cut associate salaries except during a severe business downturn (in which case I assume there would be a 30% revenue hit that would give the firm access to the wage subsidy). Then again, no one knows the final details about the wage subsidy program yet... 

Even if it is available to big firms (which I think it is) it "only" covers 75% up to $58000. I'm sure it helps but doesn't cover nearly the salaries of associates at a large National.

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