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  #7151 (permalink)  
Old 28-06-2020, 11:05 PM
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Does anyone know whether CHP law is related to CNP law? Colin Ng is on their site...
Yes. It is related.

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  #7152 (permalink)  
Old 29-06-2020, 12:09 AM
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Can anyone enlighten me on the perception of fla firms within the industry? like norton rose fulbright/ascendant, K&L gates/straits etc. does it actually affect the type of work the local office does?

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  #7153 (permalink)  
Old 29-06-2020, 12:47 AM
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Can anyone enlighten me on the perception of fla firms within the industry? like norton rose fulbright/ascendant, K&L gates/straits etc. does it actually affect the type of work the local office does?
I've heard from my friends and peers in several FLAs that FLAs are all East and West Berlin structures. There is no exception in this industry (correct me if I'm wrong with what little and uninformed knowledge I have). You are and will always be a second class citizen compared to international peers in the same firm.

Most of the time the international side seems to give work to the domestic side for cheaper cost and labour, but even if you do 20-50% international and 20-50% domestic, it doesn't magically transform you to a true international lawyer from the MC or SC or White Shoe side, where the work is 100% international. Your last drawn will still reflect that you were a second class citizen.

Simply put, unless your pay reflects it, the cost saving measure of having a lower paid employee do higher paid work doesn't make any real difference to your status as a second class citizen. If you were truly worth tour name, they'd be paying you international rates and not local rates.

Source: I mean, this is what I hear from my friends so idk. I'm in a mid sized SG non-FLA. I don't think (and I'm sure the majority would agree) it makes any real or substantial difference in prestige, prospects etc. The real prospects are when you are paid international pay. If not, forget it.

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  #7154 (permalink)  
Old 29-06-2020, 12:54 AM
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I've heard from my friends and peers in several FLAs that FLAs are all East and West Berlin structures. There is no exception in this industry (correct me if I'm wrong with what little and uninformed knowledge I have). You are and will always be a second class citizen compared to international peers in the same firm.

Most of the time the international side seems to give work to the domestic side for cheaper cost and labour, but even if you do 20-50% international and 20-50% domestic, it doesn't magically transform you to a true international lawyer from the MC or SC or White Shoe side, where the work is 100% international. Your last drawn will still reflect that you were a second class citizen.

Simply put, unless your pay reflects it, the cost saving measure of having a lower paid employee do higher paid work doesn't make any real difference to your status as a second class citizen. If you were truly worth tour name, they'd be paying you international rates and not local rates.

Source: I mean, this is what I hear from my friends so idk. I'm in a mid sized SG non-FLA. I don't think (and I'm sure the majority would agree) it makes any real or substantial difference in prestige, prospects etc. The real prospects are when you are paid international pay. If not, forget it.
I am aware that my question may seem very ignorant. But I have seen many associates from these FLAs being featured on the international firm websites. Does this mean that they from the international side? (My friend got hired from a local partner from an FLA. he got featured on the international firm website. So Iím abit confused.)
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  #7155 (permalink)  
Old 29-06-2020, 12:59 AM
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I've heard from my friends and peers in several FLAs that FLAs are all East and West Berlin structures. There is no exception in this industry (correct me if I'm wrong with what little and uninformed knowledge I have). You are and will always be a second class citizen compared to international peers in the same firm.

Most of the time the international side seems to give work to the domestic side for cheaper cost and labour, but even if you do 20-50% international and 20-50% domestic, it doesn't magically transform you to a true international lawyer from the MC or SC or White Shoe side, where the work is 100% international. Your last drawn will still reflect that you were a second class citizen.

Simply put, unless your pay reflects it, the cost saving measure of having a lower paid employee do higher paid work doesn't make any real difference to your status as a second class citizen. If you were truly worth tour name, they'd be paying you international rates and not local rates.

Source: I mean, this is what I hear from my friends so idk. I'm in a mid sized SG non-FLA. I don't think (and I'm sure the majority would agree) it makes any real or substantial difference in prestige, prospects etc. The real prospects are when you are paid international pay. If not, forget it.
Basically, what I also heard is if you are SG side, you will always be the SG side and not some excellent hire they picked up from elsewhere (international and/or reputable domestic firms that actually produce good hires). If they can get cheap labour from the SG side to do some menial international tasks, they don't have an impetus to pay you international rates. Doesn't magically convert a spade into a heart or club.

To go to an international and get paid to do truly international work, you'd have to be from another international firm or a reputable domestic firm. The PQE or salary cut you can negotiate later, even if it is at a small intl firm. What I've also heard is that large international outfits will negotiate a lesser PQE if you trained at or were working in a small international outfit. The same practice seems to exist throughout the industry.

Basically 1 PQE at X firm with 9-5 is not 1 PQE at a MC firm with 9-3, as the PQE at MC firm is worth 2x the PQE at X.

The work that you do doesn't matter tbh - international or domestic, clients are clients. You got an opportunity to work on a big domestic file, great, that says nothing about you and more about what the firm caught in the net while you were there. What really truly matters is whether the firm recognises your legitimacy as an international lawyer by paying international rates.
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  #7156 (permalink)  
Old 29-06-2020, 01:11 AM
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I am aware that my question may seem very ignorant. But I have seen many associates from these FLAs being featured on the international firm websites. Does this mean that they from the international side? (My friend got hired from a local partner from an FLA. he got featured on the international firm website. So Iím abit confused.)
Not uncommon. My friends say that the real distinguishing factor is the sensitive issue of pay. This is whether the firm recognises you and truly values your worth as an international side lawyer. The rest is all fluff and no substance i.e. money really talks.

As a corollary of pay, it is also inherent that there are in any tie-up that employs East and West Berlin pay structures, two strands of quality/merit. The international side drawing international pay where the hiring is selective (NUS/overseas reputable FCH etc, international side pay at another outfit, B4 A&G or another T1 practice) or the local side that is less selective about hires and pays less (basically, less than 90K annual starting etc). Employers are not dumb, they pay you what you are worth until you make a better value proposition.

The 'holding out' is so that you can do more cheap labour on the international clients. Keep them happy so they do work for you while you pay them less money than your expensive hires. Second, most international firms I hear would like to represent to their counterparts and clients that they have local capabilities, which cld be why they hold them out as part of the structure.

Says nothing about pay (sensitive, but I think mostly accurate given my friends' accounts both from FLA SG side and international side).
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  #7157 (permalink)  
Old 29-06-2020, 01:11 AM
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Basically, what I also heard is if you are SG side, you will always be the SG side and not some excellent hire they picked up from elsewhere (international and/or reputable domestic firms that actually produce good hires). If they can get cheap labour from the SG side to do some menial international tasks, they don't have an impetus to pay you international rates. Doesn't magically convert a spade into a heart or club.

To go to an international and get paid to do truly international work, you'd have to be from another international firm or a reputable domestic firm. The PQE or salary cut you can negotiate later, even if it is at a small intl firm. What I've also heard is that large international outfits will negotiate a lesser PQE if you trained at or were working in a small international outfit. The same practice seems to exist throughout the industry.

Basically 1 PQE at X firm with 9-5 is not 1 PQE at a MC firm with 9-3, as the PQE at MC firm is worth 2x the PQE at X.

The work that you do doesn't matter tbh - international or domestic, clients are clients. You got an opportunity to work on a big domestic file, great, that says nothing about you and more about what the firm caught in the net while you were there. What really truly matters is whether the firm recognises your legitimacy as an international lawyer by paying international rates.
Thanks for the detailed and clear cut answer. But that also relates back so my question: Why do the international firms feature the local hires as the firmís associate, even though they are not being paid international rates. I realise that international firms tend to feature associates across the FLAs, doesnít matter which rates they are paid. Correct me if Iím wrong.
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  #7158 (permalink)  
Old 29-06-2020, 01:13 AM
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Basically if youíre already in big4 or good mid sized there is no incentive to join the sg arm of an FLA. Some of these FLAsí international hire sg lawyers directly. In that case, it would be worth it if you are getting 20-30% increases or more. Otherwise, wait for an opportunity to go to a real international. Assuming your goal is a higher salary only.
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  #7159 (permalink)  
Old 29-06-2020, 01:17 AM
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Not uncommon. My friends say that the real distinguishing factor is the sensitive issue of pay. This is whether the firm recognises you and truly values your worth as an international side lawyer. The rest is all fluff and no substance i.e. money really talks.

As a corollary of pay, it is also inherent that there are in any tie-up that employs East and West Berlin pay structures, two strands of quality/merit. The international side drawing international pay where the hiring is selective (NUS/overseas reputable FCH etc, international side pay at another outfit, B4 A&G or another T1 practice) or the local side that is less selective about hires and pays less (basically, less than 90K annual starting etc). Employers are not dumb, they pay you what you are worth until you make a better value proposition.

The 'holding out' is so that you can do more cheap labour on the international clients. Keep them happy so they do work for you while you pay them less money than your expensive hires. Second, most international firms I hear would like to represent to their counterparts and clients that they have local capabilities, which cld be why they hold them out as part of the structure.

Says nothing about pay (sensitive, but I think mostly accurate given my friends' accounts both from FLA SG side and international side).
Thanks again for your detailed answer! So does this mean there is also no way to find out if the person is from the international or local side (because the international firms feature all the associates across the FLAs anyways).

I also know of some local hires (ie, those hired by local LFA partners) have gone to secondments. So it is abit perplexing to me. But yes I agree, perhaps the difference is the sensitive issue of pay and only them and their prospective employees would know.
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  #7160 (permalink)  
Old 29-06-2020, 01:20 AM
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Basically if youíre already in big4 or good mid sized there is no incentive to join the sg arm of an FLA. Some of these FLAsí international hire sg lawyers directly. In that case, it would be worth it if you are getting 20-30% increases or more. Otherwise, wait for an opportunity to go to a real international. Assuming your goal is a higher salary only.
Agreed. Also you gotta think on their side - why are they ever going to let you go to the international side for international pay when you do their menial tasks for them for cheap? They are not going to do that esp when they can make out a quick and easy case on a difference in the quality of hires. They'll keep you on the Singapore scale.

Any intra-firm hopping to intl side is frowned upon and sets a dangerous precedent (not that it has not been done). It is dangerous because hey now even A can get intl pay why cant B get it.
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