It’s end-of-the-year bonus time at law firms, where I can only presume lawyers are greedily rubbing their hands together in anticipation of a fat stack of cash. But at Weil, Gotshal & Manges, associates won’t be seeing their bonuses until January.

The firm used to do this before 2009, but this time it is being interpreted as a fancy accounting maneuver to defer expenses to 2013, in order to reduce taxes in the event that this country swan dives off the fiscal cliff into the murky tax-infested waters below. President Barack Obama and Congress are working on a plan to avoid the tax hikes that will go into effect in 2013 if they do nothing, but it seems that Weil is hedging its bets.

An anonymous associate told Thomson Reuters that “people are definitely annoyed,” because the shifting of the bonuses exposes them to higher taxes if rates go up. The bonuses range from $10,000 to $60,000, though, so something tells me they’ll take them anyway.


Read more about bonuses on InsideCounsel:

Boies Schiller year-end bonuses top out at $250,000

Cravath doles out bigger year-end bonuses

Dewey trustee objects to proposed $165,000 bonus