Careers

BigLaw 'partner' files for personal bankruptcy, lists $800 cash, clothes worth $900 and broken watch


With a BigLaw job in New York that pays him around $375,000 a year, attorney Gregory M. Owens obviously is doing better than many in the legal profession.

But career success is relative, and a recent Chapter 7 bankruptcy petition shows the 55-year-old White & Case partner hasn’t been doing as well since Dewey & LeBoeuf, where he formerly worked, imploded in 2012. Now divorced and obligated to pay his ex-wife more than $10,000 a month in alimony and child support, Owens estimates that he is about $50 in the red each month after he covers necessary expenses, writes James Stewart in a New York Times (reg. req.) column.

Although listed as a partner at his current firm, the corporate finance and banking practitioner describes himself as a contract lawyer in his bankruptcy filing because he is a so-called service partner rather than an equity partner of White & Case.

According to his Chapter 7 petition, he has substantial retirement savings, but his other personal assets are mainly $800 in cash in bank accounts, clothes worth $900 and a broken Concord watch.

Owens and his firm declined to comment for the Times article.

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