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Coudert Brothers Declares Bankruptcy

International law firm Coudert Brothers has filed a Chapter 11 bankruptcy petition in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Manhattan, according to this news item from the WSJ Online (9/22/06). According to the article, Coudert originally announced a plan to wind down business after failing to find a suitable merger partner. 

So if Coudert was planning to wind up business anyway, why file for bankruptcy now? Apparently, Coudert has since lost two lawsuits, including a $2.5 million malpractice suit, and claims it does not have the money to pay the judgment. At a minimum, the bankruptcy will stay collection of the judgment. In addition, Coudert's former partners have put away funds that Coudert says belong to the firm.   

Coudert isn't the first major law firm to file for bankruptcy. In 2003, following the collapse of the dot-com bom, San Francisco-based firm Brobeck filed for bankruptcy, soon after Tower Snow moved his lucrative practice to Clifford Chance (apparently the right decision!). Time will tell how things will work out for those departing Coudert.

Posted by Carolyn Elefant on September 22, 2006 at 07:28 PM | Permalink | Comments (1)


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