After two years of turmoil, the nation’s largest law firms are settling into a new normal. That’s the takeaway from The American Lawyer ‘s 2010 survey of leaders of Am Law 200 firms, which suggests that many of the changes implemented during the recession–smaller associate classes, postponed start dates for new hires, reductions in the equity pool, and scaled-back profit expectations–are here to stay, at least for a while.

Sixty percent of the 124 respondents to the Law Firm Leaders survey said that the downturn has produced a fundamental shift in the legal marketplace, and a smaller proportion–32 percent–said that the downturn had caused their firm to adjust its business model.

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