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Mayer Brown is conducting a firmwide evaluation of its staffing needs in light of a slowdown in some practice areas, the firm said. “Our practice area and geographic diversity has served us well,” the firm said in a statement. “A few practice areas, however, have been affected by the slowdown in economic activity. We are conducting a firmwide evaluation of our current and future staffing needs and will have more to say when that process is complete.” U.S. law firms generally have seen a decline in some practice areas such as mergers and acquisitions, real estate development, and securitization work as access to credit in the U.S. has dried up and lending terms have become more demanding. Many firms, including Katten Muchin Rosenman, Jenner & Block and Sonnenschein, Nath & Rosenthal, have cut lawyers while some firms, such as Heller Ehrman, have simply been forced to dismantle. The legal news Web site Above the Law reported rumors that Mayer Brown was laying off lawyers this week. The firm, which has about 1,800 attorneys worldwide, declined to comment on that report. “Despite the current economic conditions in the worldwide financial markets, Mayer Brown is having a strong year and most of its practices have performed well,” the firm said in the statement.

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