Birmingham’s professional sector was dealt a further blow as law firm Cobbetts announced redundancies in response to deteriorating market conditions.
The firm, which has an office in Colmore Square, said it was likely to cut around 40 fee-earning positions across its Birmingham, Leeds and Manchester offices but added it was too early to say how many jobs would go in the Birmingham office.
A statement from the firm said: “Following a further deterioration in the market and the resulting impact on commercial law firms, we have taken the difficult decision to enter into a consultation period with a number of staff.
“We have spent the last few months reviewing our services in detail and it is essential that we respond to changing market conditions and restructure our business accordingly.
“Although numbers have not yet been confirmed, it is likely that around 40 fee-earning positions will be made redundant across the firm.
“While this has been a very difficult decision for the firm, it is an essential move in response to our changing economy.
“Flexibility is key for those firms intending to preserve their business in the coming months, until we begin to see economic recovery.”
Cobbetts said the practice areas affected by the job cuts were still under consultation.
Its announcement comes a week after another top Birmingham law firm Wragge & Co announced 30 redundancies from its 640 fee earners in response to the ongoing pressures of the credit crunch.
Wragge & Co will make the cuts from across the company although the firm’s Real Estate group, the largest at the company with 178 fee earners, is expected to be the hardest hit.
Wragge & Co’s senior partner Quentin Poole said the move was a direct response to the difficult trading conditions caused by the current economic downturn.
Cobbetts, which employs 740 people across the firm, is a top 50 full service law firm with offices in Birmingham, Leeds, London and Manchester.
The firm has over 110 partners with fee income for the current year of £58.5 million.