LATERAL LOGJAM – Demand remains strong for lateral candidates in the Bay Area, but sky high pay is keeping actual lateral moves at bay, Law.com’s Jessie Yount reports. Average partner pay in the Bay Area was around $1.5 million last year, above the national average of $1.12 million. Macrae analysts are anticipating 112 total lateral moves in the Bay Area in 2022. That compares to 131 in 2021, 114 in 2020 and 118 in 2019. “The biggest rub heading into 2023, whether there is a slowdown or not, is the compensation that partners received in the last year or two,” said Macrae legal recruiter Suzanne Kane, adding, ““Firms made use of the money they made in 2021 and locked down their partners with huge bumps in compensation. As a buyer, you could take advantage of a small slowdown in hiring, but compensation is still very high. A year from now, we might be having a different conversation.”
JUDGE YE NOT? – An appellate court has intervened in U.S. District Chief Judge Colm Connolly of the District of Delaware’s unprecedented inquiry into patent assertion entity (PAE) litigation funding to determine… well, basically, whether he should mind his business. As Law.com’s Scott Graham reports, the PAEs accuse Connolly of overstepping his authority, and one accused-infringer appears to have some concerns about the level of transparency Connolly is seeking. Shaw Keller partner Andrew Russell, who’s been chronicling the cases on his IP/DE blog, said it’s hard to say what the Federal Circuit will do, though he did note that the court issued the stay “pretty quickly”—the day after the the writ petition was filed. He also noted that the Federal Circuit stayed only the disclosure order, and not any additional proceedings or upcoming hearings involving different patent owners.
ON THE RADAR – Celebrity hair stylist Kristin Ess and her company Kristin Ess Inc. filed a breach-of-contract lawsuit against Maesa LLC on Tuesday in California Central District Court. The suit arises from a partnership agreement under which Maesa was granted exclusive rights to sell hair care products under the Kristin Ess brand. The complaint, brought by Cooley, accuses Maesa of refusing to sell the company despite being valued at more than $40 million and making numerous changes that have harmed the brand’s reputation. Counsel have not yet appeared for the defendant. The case is 2:22-cv-08553, Ess et al. v. Maesa LLC. Stay up on the latest deals and litigation with the new Law.com Radar.
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