The San Diego firm cut 12 attorneys and 15 staff positions, firm Managing Partner Kurt Kicklighter told us this afternoon in an e-mail, citing current economic conditions. The cuts came in San Diego and San Francisco, and the transactional practice took the brunt.
One partner was cut, and the rest were junior-level associates, Kicklighter said. The firm had started seven first-years in January and Kicklighter declined to say how many of the laid off associates were in that group. It was not all of them, he said.
The decision comes just as Kicklighter takes over as firmwide managing partner, tasked with helping the firm to grow out of its San Diego centrism and build its presence across California. The partnership had been considering this decision for a while, he said. “We do not make snap decisions that affect people’s lives,” he said, adding that the firm has pursued other cost saving measures. Associate salaries were also frozen across the board today, he said.
Though the move curbs its immediate headcount, the firm had about 190 lawyers in December when we profiled it on CalLaw.com. The firm did not have an updated headcount available immediately this afternoon.
Kicklighter said that the layoffs don’t derail Luce, Forward’s wider plans for statewide growth. “Our practices in non-San Diego are generally strong,” he said. “The one’s we’ve adjusted are now at the appropriate size to be solid foundations for growth.”
— Petra Pasternak