Shortly after Verga's departure, the firm began advertising on its website that it was seeking partners in all areas of intellectual property law with portable books of business, according to one source in the Washington area -- an act, the source said, that "reeked of desperation."
"It is a warning sign that the firm was desperate to infuse revenue," the source said.
In Los Angeles, things didn't seem to go much better, according to West Coast sources. The office, which was established to capitalize on the region's technology innovations, is said to be struggling to make a name for itself in the region.
"They just never went anywhere in Los Angeles," said Jill Levin of Levin & Associates, a Los Angeles legal recruiting service. "They just never showed up on anyone's radar screen. I didn't hear about any real defections, but I never heard of anyone going there, either."
The Los Angeles office was also said to have posted on its website that it was looking to hire intellectual property attorneys. That notice does not currently appear on the website, but there is a hiring page that lists benefits of employment with the firm but does not list specific jobs.
Delia Swan of Swan Legal Search, another Los Angeles-area legal recruiter, said the firm was looking to hire attorneys for the office.
"They were looking to hire partners big time," she said. "They were requesting million-dollar partners with portable books of business, but that's not unusual for Los Angeles."
Levin agreed, noting that it seemed to her like the office was struggling.
"My guess is that there were not too many attorneys with books of business out here," she said. "They were likely being fed work out of Delaware."
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