Law partnerships grow as firms reverse firing and retiring trend

Elizabeth Fournier
THE NUMBER of partners at UK law firms rose significantly last year, reversing the decline seen in 2011-12 as the sector moved away from redundancies and early retirement.

During the 2012-13 financial year there was an overall net increase of 2,795 partners, compared to a net loss of 153 partners the previous year. According to accountancy firm Wilkins Kennedy, which compiled the numbers, the shift was due to a 44 per cent fall in the number of partnership posts being terminated – reversing the so-called firing and retiring trend.

“After the unprecedented partner redundancies and forced retirements which have taken place recently, most firms have by now already taken the opportunity to offer early retirement to those partners that perhaps were not performing and contributing to profitability,” said Tommy White, partner at Wilkins Kennedy.

A total of 5,872 posts were created last year, up from 5,334 the year before. In total there were 38,740 partners practising at UK law firms.