Dreier Stein California Group Forms New Firm
Approximately 20 lawyers from the Santa Monica, California-based affiliate of Dreier LLA, called Dreier Stein Kahan Browne Woods George, have formed their own firm, while most of the remaining attorneys are looking to merge with another firm.This development comes less than one month after Marc Dreier, managing partner and founder of New York-based Dreier LLP, was charged by federal prosecutors and the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission with masterminding an investment fraud worth $100 million involving at least three hedge funds. The 20 lawyers have re-formed Brown Woods George, a litigation boutique that merged with Dreier, Stein & Kahn one year ago.
Cravath's Presiding Partner: Kill the Billable Hour
Cravath, Swaine & Moore's presiding partner, Evan Chesler, has called for the end of the billable hour in a widely publicized opinion piece in the current issue of Forbes magazine. According to Chesler, ''The billable hour makes no sense, not even for lawyers.'' He says he would prefer a system where a lawyer and client can assess the value of a job, agree on a price, review progress quarterly and have a success fee for a favorable settlement or a victory. Chesler likens his proposed arrangement to building contractors where clients decide what the contractor is worth, agree on a price, and pay a bonus when the work is ahead of schedule or exceeds expectations in another way.
Ex Holland Partner Sues Firm over Benefits
A former partner in Holland & Knight's Miami office sued the firm after trying to arbitrate a dispute over his 2002 termination broke down. R. Thomas Farrar was one of 60 attorneys and 170 other employees cut from the firm in April 2002 as it tried to approve its financial performance. Farrar, who had worked for the firm since 1981, is seeking $95,920 in back retirement benefits beginning in 2007. Farrar alleges that the firm violated his partnership agreement by terminating him and wrongfully depriving him of his right to retirement benefits. The complaint also asserts that the firm leaders acted in bad faith because they didn't discuss the matter before giving him the pink slip.