Waller Lansden Dortch & Davis has laid off more than 30 people, including six attorneys, at its three offices.
John Tishler, chairman of Nashville's largest law firm, said the moves – which amount to about seven percent of the firm's total staff – cut across all practice groups and were made in response to a slowing economy. Tishler said the cuts "have made our work force fit the current business climate" and that certain groups within the firm will continue to hire.
In addition to the six associates let go, Waller also laid off nine paralegals and 17 administrative support staffers. That leaves the firm with 26 paralegals and 178 support staff.
"We made this difficult decision in order to maintain the health of the firm and set a course for future growth," Tishler said. "We do not anticipate any future reductions."
Waller's move echoes those of some large coastal and national firms in recent months. Universally cited as a factor is the slowing economy, which also has forced other firms to trim their summer associate programs or delay first-year attorneys' start dates.
Tishler said Waller is leaving its summer programs and hiring dates intact.
"We're suffering in the same ways larger firms in larger cities are," Tishler said. But, he added, "we frankly thought that wasn't the right place to go."
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