Wal-Mart Refuses Law Firm Fee Hikes, Cites High Associate Salaries
Wal-Mart has issued a memo to its law firms announcing a “moratorium on across-the-board rate increases.”
The memo says the retailer will consider only “reasonable, individual requests for rate increases for those attorneys in your firm who are performing at an exceptional level,” the Wall Street Journal reports (sub. req.).
The missive notes that many new associates are getting starting salaries as high as $160,000 a year and that some partners are billing as much as $1,000 an hour.
“The salaries that law firms choose to pay their junior associates are none of our concern,” the memo says (PDF posted by the Wall Street Journal Law Blog). “We have every reason to be concerned, however, about the impact of salary hikes on law firm billing rates.”