June 30th, 2010
The National Law Review
Five lawyers from Los Angeles-based Glaser Weil Fink Jacobs Howard & Shapiro have left to form their own litigation boutique firm.
Eric Early, managing partner of the new firm, Early Sullivan Wright Gizer & McRae, said the timing was right to leave Glaser Weil, an entertainment litigation firm where he worked for 15 years.
“We just wanted to go out on our own and give it a shot,” he said. “It’s a bunch of really great lawyers — up-and-coming lawyers — and we thought now was the time to do it.”
He noted that several other lawyers recently have founded new firms in Los Angeles, including Cypress LLP. That firm was created by former attorneys at Glaser Weil.
Patricia Glaser, chairwoman of the litigation department at Glaser Weil, said the split was amicable and that she expected to send work to Early Sullivan, as the firm does to Cypress.
Asked to explain the recent departures, she replied: “We breed entrepreneurial people.”
In addition to Early, the new firm, which opened its doors this week, was co-founded by Bryan Sullivan, William “Billy” Wright, and Scott Gizer, who were partners at Glaser Weil; and Devin McRae, who was an associate.
All five are business litigators. Their clients include Fidelity National Financial Inc.; EHR Aviation Inc., which is a subsidiary of EHR Investments Inc.; and Progressive Insurance Co. (Pago Pago) Ltd. in America Samoa. Entertainment clients include The Magnet Agency and actor Wayne Brady, who has hosted “Let’s Make a Deal.”
The departure comes two years after Glaser Weil changed its name from Christensen, Glaser, Fink, Jacobs, Weil & Shapiro following the conviction of its managing partner, Terry Christensen, on wiretapping charges. Federal prosecutors alleged that Christensen and Hollywood private eye Anthony Pellicano recorded the phone conversations of Lisa Bonder Kerkorian, the ex-wife of MGM Studios Inc. mogul Kirk Kerkorian, during a high-profile paternity dispute in 2002.
Christensen, who was sentenced to three years in federal prison, has appealed his conviction.
Source: The National Law Journal