Retire Rich – Clifford Chance Make Big Changes – Retirement looms for increasing numbers of baby boomers and the legal media in the UK have covered moves by Magic Circle firm Clifford Chance to move its retirement practice in line with the new British age discrimination law – something larger firms are perhaps more aware of than ever with age, sex, race and religious discrimination cases on the rise. In fact, the firm waited for the outcome of the age discrimination lawsuit against Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer by its former insolvency partner Peter Bloxham, before implementing the new changes.

The new moves from CC mean that all reference to age has been removed

The lucky ones are those who made partner before 2005. Legal Week reports:

“Under the previous system, partner made up before 2005 could opt to take early retirement between the ages of 50 and 55 and receive five years of pension payments equating to up to 25% of plateau profits. CC has now discarded the age reference and will instead base the system on years of service.

The change, which applies to partners made up before 2005 under the firm’s old policy, means partners who have been in the equity for 15 years will now be entitled to a pension of about 17% of plateau profits for the five years after retiring. For partners of 20 years or more, that figure will increase to a cap of 23% or a financial limit of £276,000.”

Effectively, Clifford Chance partners who have been partners for 15 years could leave the mega firm in their relative youth – say, their mid 40s – on a handsome payout and then enter alternative gainful employment that could see them retire with the rest of us

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