YaleLawWomen2014

Yale Law Women Announces 2014 Top Ten Family Friendly Firms

Yale Law Women (YLW) is pleased to announce its ninth annual Top Ten Family Friendly Firms list. YLW congratulates these firms for their leadership in developing and implementing family friendly policies and practices. The 2014 Top Ten Firms, in alphabetical order, are:

ARNOLD & PORTER
BAKER BOTTS
HOGAN LOVELLS US
HUNTON & WILLIAMS
KIRKLAND & ELLIS
MORRISON & FOERSTER
MUNGER, TOLLES & OLSON
ORRICK, HERRINGTON & SUTCLIFFE
PAUL, WEISS, RIFKIND, WHARTON & GARRISON
VINSON & ELKINS

Below are key areas of progress and opportunities for improvement from this year’s survey results.  We hope that these findings will enhance awareness and dialogue about family friendliness and gender equality in the legal profession. For the full report, please visit http://yalelawwomen.org/top-ten-list.

 

Work/life balance: defining “family friendliness” broadly

Billable Hour Requirements

  • Participating firms reported average full-time billable hour credits of 1,828 for associates, with female attorneys billing about 70 hours less than male attorneys.
  • Over half of participating firms required full-time associates to work a minimum number of billable hours to receive a bonus; the average threshold was over 1,900 hours. The highest target was over 2,100 hours.
  • A majority of firms counted pro bono work as fully billable. Only a handful of firms considered committee participation, mentoring, or professional development activities as billable at all; even for those firms, these hours were typically subject to a cap.

Part-Time and Flex-Time Policies

  • On average, 80.5% of the attorneys who utilized part-time options were women.
  • On average, an attorney working part-time billed 1,348 hours in 2013, compared to 1,828 hours for full-time associates and 1,590 hours for full-time partners. These figures show that, consistent with the results from last year’s survey, part-time associates worked 60% of the hours of full-time associates on average.

Family Care

  • On average across all participating firms, primary caregivers were offered 16 weeks of paid leave, while secondary caregivers were offered 5.6 weeks of paid leave.
  • Approximately 9% of female attorneys and 9% of male attorneys took some form of parental leave in 2013. Out of those associates taking any parental leave, over 90% of women took the maximum amount of parental leave, whereas only about 50% of men took the maximum amount of leave.

Leadership of law firms: women continue to be under-represented

  • In 2013, women comprised about 44% of associates with less than three years of experience and of associates with three or more years of experience, but only 18% of equity partners.
  • Women’s representation on Executive or Management Committees also remained low; only 21% of Executive or Management Committee members were women. Women also only made up 22% of Compensation Committees.
  • By comparison, 40% of Hiring Committees and over 50% of Diversity Committees were comprised of women.

Yale Law Women produces its annual Top Ten Family Friendly Firms List to monitor trends in family friendliness in the Vault 100, raise awareness of gender disparities within the legal profession, highlight progress and innovative solutions, and identify areas for improvement. We believe that the legal profession should allow all attorneys to cultivate their best selves in their work and balance a challenging and engaging career with personal interests and obligations. For more information, please visit our website at http://yalelawwomen.org/top-ten-list/.

Please direct all inquiries to Luci Yang at luci.yang@yale.edu.

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