D.C. law firm Patton Boggs lays off lawyers, sources say

The Washington, D.C. law firm Patton Boggs has laid off a unknown number of lawyers and administrative staff, according to two sources inside the firm and two sources outside the firm with direct knowledge of the matter.

The law firm, which has more than 550 attorneys in nine offices worldwide, is known best for its lobbying and public policy work in Washington and is expected to have a firm-wide meeting early on Friday to discuss the state of the firm, according to a Patton Boggs partner.

At the meeting, in which partners will be able to call in via telephone, the leaders of the firm are expected to formally announce details about the layoffs, among other changes at the firm, the partner said.

"I think the firm is just rightsizing," said one partner, who noted he wasn't worried about the firm's financial health.

It could not be determined how many lawyers, or which ones, are affected by the layoffs, but one source with knowledge of the matter said that the layoffs affect lawyers in both partner and associate ranks.

The layoffs come as many law firms throughout the United States have sought to lay off partners and junior associates after the legal industry has faced low legal demand and significant pricing pressure from clients after the recession.

A Patton Boggs spokesman contacted on Thursday said: "We have nothing formal to announce at this time. We'd be glad to share any information when we do."

Thomas Boggs, the firm's chairman, did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

(Reporting by Casey Sullivan)