The Talent

December 19, 2008 2:01 PM

Thacher Loses Litigation Chief to DLA

Posted by Nate Raymond

H214916409 Amid talk of a merger or possible dissolution of Thacher Proffitt & Wood, the firm's head of litigation has quietly decamped to DLA Piper.

Richard Hans, who joined Thacher only two years ago from DLA and became head of litigation in January, recently returned to his old firm. DLA did not announce the move, but Hans confirmed it when reached at his new office. He declined to answer other questions, including whether other lawyers would follow him.

"For a variety of reasons, I don't want to talk about it until after the first of the year, and I just don't want to provide any comment at all," he says.

The move comes as chatter swirls about the possible collapse of Thacher Proffitt, a heavy hitter in securitization that saw profits fall and partners leave with the collapse of the real estate and credit markets.

In 2007 Thacher Proffitt grossed $194.5 million, up only 1.6 percent. Profits per partner last year dropped 22.1 percent to $1.02 million. A raft of partners have departed for other firms. Thacher Proffitt shutdown its White Plains office in October as partners there, including vice chairman Thomas Leslie, departed for Greenberg Traurig. In November, Hogan & Hartson hired two partners, including executive committee member Richard Schaberg.

Legal Times reported last week that King & Spalding was in talks to acquire most of Thacher, though the state of those talks is uncertain. (A King & Spalding spokesman declined comment.) Bloomberg reported last week that all of Thacher's New York office at Two World Financial Center has been put on the market.

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