Morning Briefing: Corrs Chambers Westgarth announces 28 promotions

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Corrs Chambers Westgarth announces 28 promotions
Twenty-eight lawyers from Corrs Chambers Westgarth will return from their Christmas break with new titles following a round of promotions. Six have been promoted to special counsel while a further 22 become senior associates. The six special counsels are Caroline Ryan, Colleen Martin, David Starkoff, Isaac Lin, James Marley and Lee Carroll. CEO John Denton says that all of those promoted are the next generation of leaders.
Reed Smith introduces new recruitment process
Reed Smith will switch to strength-based recruitment in the New Year in what’s believed to be a law firms first. The process involves candidates completing a series of situation-based tests which are measured against eight core strengths that have been identified in the firm’s top performers. There has also been analysis of future trends in the legal profession to help find candidates with skills that are becoming important. Trainees and vacation scheme students will be assessed in this way from January.
Squire Patton Boggs hires senior US government official
The deputy chief of staff from the US House Speaker’s office is to join Squire Patton Boggs to advise on public policy. David Schnittger has worked with the current House Speaker for more than 20 years and is his longest serving member of staff. The public policy practice of Squires is headed by a former Senate majority leader, Trent Lott.
Are top lawyers starting to attract sports star salaries?
Competition for the top performing partners may be hot but if reports are to be believed then Kirkland & Ellis may be responding with exceptional compensation packages. The figure being reportedly paid by the firm for James Hurst, who had joined from Winston & Strawn, is an eye-watering US $9 million (AU$ 10.9m) a year guaranteed for 4 years. Additional sources say that Kirkland has paid large sums to other recent hires.
Report shines a light on lawyers’ online marketing
A Canadian academic report has criticized the way lawyers in the country advertise their services online. The study looked specifically at websites of criminal defence lawyers and found that many use approaches which are worrying, particularly with reference to sexual assault. Assistant law professor Elaine Craig of Dalhousie University in Halifax who wrote the report says that some of the language used is aggressive and trivialises sexual assault cases. She says that it could breach ethics codes and is calling for law societies to update their guidelines for the digital age.