23 November 2017

Sedgwick to shut up shop after 85 years

American law firm Sedgwick is to close in January after some 85 years in business.

The closure follows a raft of lawyers exiting the firm in recent years, most recently a defection to UK law firm Kennedys. ‘We have concluded that the best way to allow our lawyers to continue providing great service to our clients is by ceasing operations and moving to other excellent law firms,’ a letter from the firm read revealing the news. It added: ‘We are pleased that most of our lawyers and staff have opportunities with very fine firms.’ 

Humble beginnings

After being set up by two lawyers almost a century ago in San Francisco, the firm now has offices in Chicago, Dallas, Kansas City, London, Los Angeles, Miami, New York and Seattle. 'From that humble beginning, the firm expanded across the United States and overseas to London and beyond, serving its clients wherever it was needed,’ the letter stated. ‘From its founding partners to all those who have shared their talents with us over the decades, the firm has made an indelible impact on thousands of clients and colleagues and in hundreds of courtrooms and boardrooms across this country and others.’ 

Sad but proud

The statement continued: ‘While this news deeply saddens all of us, we are very proud and appreciative of all those who helped make Sedgwick the great firm it has been since 1933...From the bottom of our hearts, we thank our clients, attorneys and staff for everything you have done for us for decades, and we wish anyone who has ever crossed paths with this wonderful law firm the best and brightest future.’ 

Difficulties

In recent times the firm has been plagued with partner defections and in the past few weeks suffered another set-back when attempts to merge with Clyde & Co fell through.In 2017, Sedgwick reported income of $170.5 million and 274 lawyers.