Baker Botts associates are learning this week about potential changes to their pay and bonus packages that become effective Jan. 1, 2011, says Maria Boyce, partner-in-charge of the firm’s Houston office.

The firm is moving associates from lockstep promotions and pay to a merit-based system, she says. Based on each associate’s current tenure with the Houston-based firm, they are a junior, mid-level or senior associate. “The initial placement of lawyers into levels is based solely on tenure,” she says.