KWM Europe mum on pay freeze for 100 staff

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King & Wood Mallesons’ beleaguered UK, Europe and Middle East has stayed mum on its pay freeze affecting 100 of its staff.
According to multiple reports, the affected people were notified via letter on 2 January, their first day at the firm from the holiday break, of the decision.
In a statement sent to UK publications Legal Week, Legal Business and The Lawyer, the firm said: “We do not comment on any matter concerning our people, whether individually or collectively, in order to protect their privacy.”
Legal Business reports that most of the affected are in the business services division of the firm but that some fee-earners have also been notified. Those affected includes employees who are on maternity, sick and holiday leaves.
KWM’s EUME arm last month filed with the High Court a notice of intention to appoint an administrator, Legal Week reports, giving the firm until 9 January to appoint administrators or file another notice.
The affected staff and fee earners who are still employed by the firm were selected via an informal consultation process that considered the firm’s future needs, says The Lawyer.
The spate of partners who have left KWM EUME now totals more than 40, Legal Week notes. The latest defection is by Frankfurt corporate partner Michiel Huizinga who is said to be joining Allen & Overy in February.
The pay freeze was instituted despite a previous statement from KWM EUME that wages will continue to be paid until administration.

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