Vedder Price Cuts 4% Of Workforce Amid Virus

By Xiumei Dong
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Law360 (May 5, 2020, 6:17 PM EDT) -- Vedder Price PC is the latest law firm to roll out cost-saving measures in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, confirming Tuesday that it has laid off 4% of its attorneys and professional staff.

In a statement to Law360, the Chicago-founded business law firm said it made reductions to its workforce "in areas where utilization was most impacted by the remote work environment."

Vedder Price declined to comment on the exact number of the layoffs but said it will provide affected employees with severance as well as health care coverage through September.

As of Tuesday afternoon, Vedder Price's website listed more than 270 attorneys and staff across its seven offices in the U.S., United Kingdom and Singapore.

Additionally, the firm's partners took a 20% cut on their draws to allay the financial burden of the crisis, a firm spokesperson said. Vedder Price also shortened the duration of its 2020 summer program and deferred the start date of its incoming first-year associate class to January 2021.

The firm is just one of many that have recently implemented cost-cutting measures to weather the financial impact of COVID-19.

On Monday, Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP confirmed that it will cut pay for associates and counsel in the U.S. by 20% and for staff by up to 15%, although no employees making less than $75,000 a year will have their pay impacted.

The firm called it a "shared sacrifice" approach, which includes reducing partner draws by a minimum of 25%.

Last week, Squire Patton Boggs LLP, DAC Beachcroft LLP, Saul Ewing Arnstein & Lehr LLP and Katten Muchin Rosenman LLP also announced cuts in the wake of the financial downturn of the crisis.

Firms are also changing their summer associate programs. Dickinson Wright PLLC, Morrison & Foerster LLP, Schulte Roth & Zabel LLP, Baker Botts LLP and Arnold & Porter have decided to cancel or amend their programs.

--Additional reporting by Michele Gorman. Editing by Daniel King.

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