Associates

Bye-Bye, Billables

Posted Aug 20, 2007 6:11 AM CDT
By Debra Cassens Weiss

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One Atlanta law firm has decided to chuck billable hour requirements for first-year associates.

New hires at Ford & Harrison, a 190-lawyer labor and employment firm, will devote much of their time to learning. They will observe depositions, attend hearings, and watch litigation strategy meetings, the National Law Journal reports.

Because the firm will hire only six associates this year, about half its usual number, the program will be easier to implement.

Managing partner C. Lash Harrison told the legal newspaper he hopes the decision will help the firm retain associates.

"Everyone sits around and complains about the problems," he said. "I figured, what the heck, maybe we can try something."

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