While most large law firms that deferred associates in 2009 say they are on track to hire those young lawyers this year, Chadbourne & Parke last month made the difficult call to rescind job offers to 11 of the 28 associates whose start dates the firm pushed back.

It was a business decision and “not something we took lightly at all,” said Scott Berson, a partner and head of recruiting at Chadbourne. Despite the cuts, the firm plans in August to return to law school campuses to recruit, a prospect that some of the deferred associates now out of a job call unfair.