Field Fisher Waterhouse suspends London partner

February 15, 2013 In a move unprecedented in the firm’s history, Field Fisher Waterhouse has suspended one of its partners.

Head of IP and technology Mark Abell has fallen out with some of his fellow partners, and their disputes have become increasingly public over recent months. The firm decided to suspend the high-earning partner last friday when Abell publicly announced that he had "outgrown" the firm and was heading to Bird & Bird.

Roll on Friday points out that Field Fisher Waterhouse has had two failed merger attempts recently, and that the firm may need to lose a number of partners before it can conduct an effective merger. The suspension, asserts Roll on Friday, is designed to ensure Abell’s departure while holding on to his team and clients, at least for the short term. The suspension allows FFW the power to stop Abell from joining another firm for at least a year, and affords them real bargaining power in negotiations with him.

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