X

Thank you for sharing!

Your article was successfully shared with the contacts you provided.
SAN FRANCISCO � The American Bar Association is calling on law firms to abandon their mandatory retirement policies. In a vote on Aug. 13 by the ABA’s House of Delegates at its annual meeting in San Francisco, the 413,000-member organization took the official position of urging law firms that require their attorneys to retire at a certain age to rethink those policies. Proponents of the measure argued that law firms with such policies operate contrary to almost every other workplace where mandatory retirement violates age discrimination laws. “We do not want to be perceived as having a separate set of rules,” said Andrew Susko, president of the Pennsylvania Bar Association. The resolution, which passed by an oral vote that to many attendees sounded like a close call, recommends that law firms discontinue such policies and that they evaluate senior partners individually based on performance criteria. One size fits all? Opponents of the resolution argued that the ABA should not tell law firms how to run their operations and should not second-guess agreements between a firm and its partners. “It supports a once-size-fits-all resolution. Firms are not cookie-cutter institutions,” said Esther Lardent, president and chief executive officer of the Pro Bono Institute at Georgetown University Law Center. The issue of mandatory retirement has received particular attention because of a lawsuit pending against Sidley Austin. Law firms are anticipating a decision from the U.S. district court in Chicago in an action filed by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission on behalf of about 30 former partners against Sidley Austin over whether its alleged retirement policy violated age discrimination laws. According to a 2005 study by Altman Weil, a law firm consultancy, 57% of law firms with 100 or more attorneys enforce a mandatory retirement age, which typically range from ages 65 to 75. The ABA resolution is a recommendation to law firms and does not have a legally binding effect.

This content has been archived. It is available through our partners, LexisNexis® and Bloomberg Law.

To view this content, please continue to their sites.

Not a Lexis Advance® Subscriber?
Subscribe Now

Not a Bloomberg Law Subscriber?
Subscribe Now

Why am I seeing this?

LexisNexis® and Bloomberg Law are third party online distributors of the broad collection of current and archived versions of ALM's legal news publications. LexisNexis® and Bloomberg Law customers are able to access and use ALM's content, including content from the National Law Journal, The American Lawyer, Legaltech News, The New York Law Journal, and Corporate Counsel, as well as other sources of legal information.

For questions call 1-877-256-2472 or contact us at [email protected]

 
Reprints & Licensing
Mentioned in a Law.com story?

License our industry-leading legal content to extend your thought leadership and build your brand.

 

ALM Legal Publication Newsletters

Sign Up Today and Never Miss Another Story.

As part of your digital membership, you can sign up for an unlimited number of a wide range of complimentary newsletters. Visit your My Account page to make your selections. Get the timely legal news and critical analysis you cannot afford to miss. Tailored just for you. In your inbox. Every day.

Copyright © 2021 ALM Media Properties, LLC. All Rights Reserved.