Steven Eckhaus
Steven Eckhaus ()

Steven Eckhaus, known for representing executives in large compensation deals, is moving his practice later this week from Cadwalader, Wickersham & Taft to McDermott Will & Emery.

Eckhaus, 64, and two other Cadwalader lawyers from the same practice group—special counsel Shane Stroud and senior attorney Evan Belosa—will join him as partners at McDermott. Eckhaus will lead his new firm’s employee benefits, executive compensation and labor and employment practice in New York.

The lateral move guts the core of Cadwalader’s own executive compensation group. Eckhaus launched the practice at Cadwalader after joining the firm three years ago from Katten Muchin Rosenman, as noted at the time by sibling publication the New York Law Journal.

“It was a good move for me and my practice and my clients,” Eckhaus said in a weekend interview, adding that he was drawn to McDermott’s large and premier executive compensation practice.

Eckhaus is the latest in a series of partner departures from Cadwalader over the past several months. In August, the firm saw a high-profile antitrust team led by practice head Charles “Rick” Rule join Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison in Washington, D.C. The American Lawyer reported in July that Cadwalader has approached several firms about a potential merger.

In an interview, Eckhaus said that Cadwalader is a fine firm and “there’s nothing unusual about people moving.”

Eckhaus represents companies and executives in several facets of employment law, such as career moves or exits, benefits and performance. He has also litigated matters involving trade secrets, confidentiality, restrictive covenants and fiduciary duties.

Key clients of Eckhaus’ over the years include former Simpson Thacher & Bartlett tax associate Erin Callan, who served as CFO at now-defunct Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc., as well as Yale Law School graduate and ex-Morgan Stanley wealth management leader Gregory Fleming, according to The Wall Street Journal, which first had news of Eckhaus’ move to McDermott.

Eckhaus and other lawyers in his field will soon have to navigate new rules under the Dodd-Frank Act that require financial institutions to disclose to regulators the structures of incentive-based compensation arrangements. (The New Jersey Law Journal, a sibling publication, recently reported on the high stakes for many executive compensation lawyers.)

“It requires much more justification for the compensation,” Eckhaus said about the new rules. “It will seriously change the way pay determinations are made for any executive or risk taker.”

Cadwalader, which went through an abrupt leadership change in 2015, saw its finances slip that same year. Gross revenue fell 3.7 percent, to $463.5 million, as profits per partner plunged 6.8 percent, to $2.06 million, according to The American Lawyer’s reporting.

McDermott, which is also poised for a leadership change, has had its own notable lateral exits within the past year. The firm saw gross revenue remain mostly flat in 2015 at $891.5 million, while profits per partner rose slightly, to $1.58 million.

Steven Eckhaus, known for representing executives in large compensation deals, is moving his practice later this week from Cadwalader, Wickersham & Taft to McDermott Will & Emery .

Eckhaus, 64, and two other Cadwalader lawyers from the same practice group—special counsel Shane Stroud and senior attorney Evan Belosa—will join him as partners at McDermott. Eckhaus will lead his new firm’s employee benefits, executive compensation and labor and employment practice in New York .

The lateral move guts the core of Cadwalader’s own executive compensation group. Eckhaus launched the practice at Cadwalader after joining the firm three years ago from Katten Muchin Rosenman , as noted at the time by sibling publication the New York Law Journal.

“It was a good move for me and my practice and my clients,” Eckhaus said in a weekend interview, adding that he was drawn to McDermott’s large and premier executive compensation practice.

Eckhaus is the latest in a series of partner departures from Cadwalader over the past several months. In August, the firm saw a high-profile antitrust team led by practice head Charles “Rick” Rule join Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison in Washington, D.C. The American Lawyer reported in July that Cadwalader has approached several firms about a potential merger.

In an interview, Eckhaus said that Cadwalader is a fine firm and “there’s nothing unusual about people moving.”

Eckhaus represents companies and executives in several facets of employment law, such as career moves or exits, benefits and performance. He has also litigated matters involving trade secrets, confidentiality, restrictive covenants and fiduciary duties.

Key clients of Eckhaus’ over the years include former Simpson Thacher & Bartlett tax associate Erin Callan, who served as CFO at now-defunct Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc., as well as Yale Law School graduate and ex-Morgan Stanley wealth management leader Gregory Fleming, according to The Wall Street Journal, which first had news of Eckhaus’ move to McDermott.

Eckhaus and other lawyers in his field will soon have to navigate new rules under the Dodd-Frank Act that require financial institutions to disclose to regulators the structures of incentive-based compensation arrangements. (The New Jersey Law Journal, a sibling publication, recently reported on the high stakes for many executive compensation lawyers.)

“It requires much more justification for the compensation,” Eckhaus said about the new rules. “It will seriously change the way pay determinations are made for any executive or risk taker.”

Cadwalader, which went through an abrupt leadership change in 2015, saw its finances slip that same year. Gross revenue fell 3.7 percent, to $463.5 million, as profits per partner plunged 6.8 percent, to $2.06 million, according to The American Lawyer’s reporting.

McDermott, which is also poised for a leadership change, has had its own notable lateral exits within the past year. The firm saw gross revenue remain mostly flat in 2015 at $891.5 million, while profits per partner rose slightly, to $1.58 million.