Paul Rawlinson

Baker McKenzie global chairman Paul Rawlinson is poised to take temporary leave from the firm’s top leadership position following health issues caused by exhaustion.

The global legal giant said Monday that the London-based Rawlinson, who assumed leadership of Baker McKenzie in 2016, will step back from his day-to-day responsibilities and take temporary leave to focus on a personal medical issue.

“Based on the advice of his doctor, in response to medical issues caused by exhaustion, Paul has decided to take a step back from firm leadership and client responsibilities to make his health and recovery his immediate priority,” Baker McKenzie said through a spokesperson. “Everyone at Baker McKenzie sends best wishes to Paul and his family for a quick and full recovery, and we look forward to welcoming him back soon.”

Bogota-based M&A partner and Latin America chair Jaime Trujillo Caicedo, a member of Baker McKenzie’s global executive committee and chair of its financial committee, will serve as the firm’s acting chair in Rawlinson’s absence.

Rawlinson, an intellectual property lawyer, joined Baker McKenzie in 1986 and made partner at the firm in 1995. He served as a member of Baker McKenzie’s London office management committee between 2001 and 2004 and as global chair of its IP practice from 2004 to 2010. In 2013, Rawlinson was named London managing partner, three years before winning the firm’s global chairman election.

During his tenure as chair, Rawlinson oversaw a period of significant growth at the 4,719-lawyer firm. In August, Baker McKenzie announced that gross revenue had risen 8 percent in 2017-18, to $2.9 billion, while profits per equity partner climbed 14 percent, to $1.44 million.