Louisiana Commercial, Transactional, and Litigation Attorneys
Overview: We view our associates as the future of our firm, assuring our ability to maintain our preeminent position among law firms in North Louisiana. Therefore, we hire associates with a goal of developing lawyers of the highest legal ability and ethical standards. Each associate is encouraged and assisted early on in developing the technical and client management skills necessary to function as independently as possible and to handle significant legal matters.
Generally, associates are considered to become shareholders after seven years with the firm. Credit for clerkships and prior years of practice is given against this time and also for the purpose of compensation. Although associates are usually considered to become shareholders after these times, we have, on at least one occasion, acted to offer an associate whose performance was outstanding the opportunity to become a shareholder a full year early.
Associate Compensation: Our associate compensation not only pays our associates at the top of our market but also reflects the core values that make Cook, Yancey an exceptional place to practice law: a commitment to client service, a focus on overall associate performance rather than billable hours, an emphasis on teamwork and collegiality and significant associate participation in management. It is our policy to be the leader in North Louisiana in terms of compensation paid to associates by law firms. In addition, although such is not a formal part of our associate compensation system, we have paid merit bonuses ranging as high as an additional 25% of an associate’s salary to associates whose performance has been exceptional. Generally such bonuses have been to associates after two years with the firm.
Benefits: We have a comprehensive benefits package, which includes:
- Coverage for you under our group health and dental insurance plan at firm expense (Dependent coverage is available at your expense)
- A $20,000 life insurance policy for you at firm expense
- Participation in the firm’s 401K retirement program to which you may make contributions from your salary and to which we will make contributions and matching contributions for a total possible contribution by the firm of 10.49% of your salary towards your 401K retirement program
- A group benefit cafeteria plan, under which unreimbursed medical expenses, child care expenses, and premiums for dependent medical coverage may be paid on a pre-tax basis
- A group disability insurance policy (in which we require participation) to protect you
- Two weeks of paid vacation each year
- Several social functions throughout the year
- The firm pays membership dues for the Shreveport, Louisiana and American Bar Associations, and other approved legal organizations
- The firm encourages attendance at approved seminars, and attorneys’ expenses related to those seminars are paid by the firm
- We encourage attendance at the Louisiana State and American Bar Association conventions, and expenses related to those conventions are reimbursed up to $1,000 annually
- The Firm reviews the performance of associates annually and we discuss the reviews with the associate
Resources: To enhance practice support, all associates are provided with a firm-owned computer at no cost to the associate. All computers are configured by our technology personnel, who provide firm-approved software. Attorneys who prefer notebook computers are provided those with an in-office docking port. Every attorney has available at his or her desk resources such as Westlaw, Internet access, e-mail, calendaring, etc. We employ a full group of runners and other assistance.
Other: Each associate is assigned a shareholder as a mentor who gives advice and direction to the associate and monitors the associate’s work volume to assure that he or she is not overwhelmed with work from too many shareholders and clients. Our associates are given periodic feedback from their mentor and other attorneys with whom the associate is working. Additionally, the associate is provided with an annual formal review and raise.
Because we strive to hire only the most qualified individuals who have a proven ability to excel among their peers, our firm does not utilize minimum billable hour or dollar production requirements. We hire quality, self-motivated attorneys who take pride in providing the best possible legal representation to their clients. As a result, we find that we can provide to our associates general ideas of our expectations, and that they perform based upon their own ambitions.
For more information, please contact David Hemken by e-mail, or by phone at (318) 227-7701.