BCG News - 11/17/03 |

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BCG News - 11/17/03

By Harrison Barnes, Managing Director


Mayer Brown to make partner compensation uniform across the AtlanticSince Chicago firm

Mayer, Brown & Platt merged with UK-based Rowe & Maw in February of 2002, the two firms have acted separately in deciding the proper compensation structure for their partners. The firm is now seeking to adopt a plan that will unify the partners from both sides into the same structure, which will be the final step towards bringing the firms together. US-based attorneys from Mayer Brown currently operates under a merit-based system, while the firm's UK attorneys get rewarded through a lockstep program, and both sides will be heard from before making a final decision. Mayer Brown hopes to implement the move at the beginning of 2005, per the firm's plan upon merging to keep the status quo for the first three years of unification. Legal Week, 11/13/03

BCG News - 11/17/03

Sarbanes-Oxley Act compliance forces EY Law's Stuttgart office to break up
Twelve partners and eight associates will be leaving the Stuttgart Office of EY Law in order for the firm to be able to comply with the US Sarbanes-Oxley Act and its German equivalent. The firm, locally known as Luther Menold, will lose twelve partners in the split, including the managing partner of the Stuttgart office and a name partner. The departing partners will form a new firm that will continue to work with Ernst & Young, but will have no business with EY Law. This news comes after KLegal International, a similar international network of law firms was abandoned by parent KPMG in part because of Sarbanes-Oxley complications. Legal Week, 11/17/03

San Francisco-based Gordon & Rees opens an office in Houston
Gordon & Rees, a 215 attorney firm based in San Francisco, officially opened a new downtown Houston office recently. The office will be staffed by Donna Smith Cude, a labor and employment law attorney who will head the office, and two others. Gordon & Rees's expansion from a small insurance defense firm to a growing multi-office firm with a diversified practice has mostly come in the last few years, with the opening of many of the firm's offices and the addition of dozens of attorneys. Houston Business Journal, 11/17/03

Patterson Belknap forms an appellate practice group New York City firm
Patterson, Belknap, Webb & Tyler, long known for its litigation expertise, announced last week that several current attorneys from within will be placed into a new practice group that will handle the appellate needs of its clients. Although the firm's appellate practice is new, the attorneys who make up the new group have been appearing before appellate courts on behalf of Patterson Belknap clients for years. The firm has handled over 200 appeals. With the addition of the new practice group, Patterson Belknap's website promises its clients the benefits of an appellate group that will be "deeply grounded in the subject matter of the appeal.", 11/15/05

Kirkland & Ellis adds a tax practice to their London branch
With the addition of a senior partner from Pricewaterhouse Coopers, Chicago giant Kirkland & Ellis will be adding a tax practice group to their UK office. The addition has been planned for awhile, but Kirkland & Ellis held out until they could find the right candidate to lead the new group. Ian Taplin will serve as head of the tax practice and become the London office's 14th partner. Kirkland & Ellis also added a finance practice to their London branch this year. Legal Week, 11/13/03

Baker & McKenzie adds a tax partner in Brussels
Another move from PricewaterhouseCrooper and another international effect of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act has placed a new tax partner at the Brussels home of Baker & McKenzie. Phillippe Lion commented on the move, saying that he feels that Sarbanes-Oxley will increasingly affect the tax law industry and augment the role of private firms with a strong presence in tax. Lion will be the 13th partner in Baker's Brussels office, and its 10th tax partner. The Lawyer, 11/13/03

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