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Telecommuting Policies and Alternative Work Schedules

Covington recognizes and fully supports the need to balance one’s personal life and personal obligations with the demands of law practice. We are committed to excellence in the practice of law, and we are also committed to the proposition that our lawyers should enjoy fulfilling, enriching lives outside of practice.

The firm’s norm is that lawyers working on a full-time schedule are expected to be in the office during the work week unless they are away for client or firm business, or if they have personal or other needs to be out of the office on a given day. This norm both arises from and helps promote the firm’s deep-seated culture of collaboration, teamwork and sharing. This collaborative culture is promoted by regular and often informal interactions among lawyers in the office during the work week. Such interactions also provide opportunities for informal mentoring, consultations and guidance that flow from presence together in the office during the work week.

All lawyers have needs to be out of the office on occasion. On the other hand, some lawyers may prefer a regularized schedule where they telecommute on a regular basis. For associates and counsel who regularly telecommute, their base compensation is set as a percentage of a five-day-per-week-in-the-office schedule, but is then adjusted upward at the end of each quarter if that lawyer’s workload exceeds the pro-rated level.

Other lawyers may prefer to work on a reduced overall workload. Associates and counsel who seek a reduced overall workload are also compensated based on the relationship of their overall workload to a full-time schedule, subject to an upward adjustment at the end of each quarter if the lawyer’s workload is higher than anticipated. We encourage part-time schedules of at least 70% to 75% of a conventional workload, and such schedules should be at least 60% -- on the view that these levels provide sufficient involvement in firm and client matters to make the arrangements workable.

Covington has a long history of actively supporting alternative work schedules, and the firm accommodates all reasonable requests for such schedules. Associates and counsel on alternative work schedules remain fully eligible for partnership consideration, although the timing of such a decision may be affected by the lawyer’s level of engagement in the work of the firm. More than 20 lawyers have become partners in the firm while working on an alternative schedule.