Brown Rudnick has rescinded offers to 10 associates scheduled to join the firm this fall, the firm confirmed in a statement Monday.
The firm had planned to hire 23 new associates, many of them in its New York and Boston offices.
“We are not in a position to assimilate such a high number and provide associates with the work opportunities and training that will enable them to develop,” the firm’s statement said. “Market conditions have remained challenging. Demand for legal services has been relatively flat during the last two years and client demand for first year associates has declined.”
Rescinding job offers was more common during the financial crisis, but law firms continue to face rate pressure from clients and criticism on staffing cases with first year-associates. Above the Law first reported the news Monday.
The Boston-founded firm said that during the last two years, it has enjoyed “strong financial performance” and its business and staff have grown significantly. “But most of the growth has taken place in different markets,” outside New York and Boston, the firm said.
The Am Law 200 firm saw moderate increases in revenue and profits per partner last year, according to The American Lawyer’s early reporting. Its revenue increased 4.4 percent to $166 million and its per-partner profits rose 5.6 percent to $1.24 million. Meanwhile, attorney headcount rose slightly to 187 and revenue per lawyer remained flat. Its equity partner headcount grew by three, to 55.
The firm said it was able to relocate some of last year’s first-year associates to other offices, but it was not practical to do that for this year’s class.
Brown Rudnick said the hiring process with its first-year class started more than a year and a half ago, and it regretted the disappointment it would cause.