Work/Life Balance

Want law firm work-life balance? Parents and management should work together, says Justice Ginsburg

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A father holding a child and a briefcase

Parents in private practice should act together to decide what sort of offerings could help work-life balance, and law firms would be wise to accommodate the requests, U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg said Wednesday, speaking to the Washington, D.C., chapter of the Association of Corporate Counsel.

“Firms don’t seem to be moving that fast to be flexible,” Ginsburg said in a conversation with Ted Olson, a former U.S. solicitor general, the National Law Journal reports. And attorneys with young children could “make it known and illustrate by example that you can have a home life and a work life.”

Ginsburg also told the group of more than 250 in-house lawyers that she was happy to see more corporate counsel doing pro bono work.

“I think there is more of a lawyers’ monopoly in the United States than any country in the world,” Ginsburg said. “Because that’s true, lawyers have an obligation to give back, to contribute to society.”

She backed away from questions about Shelby County v. Holder, the 2013 voting rights cases where she authored a strong dissent, noting that several voting cases are before the court. However, Ginsburg did say that Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act, which prohibits discrimination based on race, color and membership with certain language minorities, remains viable.

“Hope is not gone,” Ginsburg told the audience, which gathered in Tysons Corner, Virginia.

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