Deloitte, Epstein Becker Alliance Hit Overdrive During Covid-19

Bloomberg Law Business & Practice

James P. Flynn, Managing Director, David W. Garland, Chair of the firm’s National Employment, Labor & Workforce Management Steering Committee, Steven Di Fiore, Chief Operating Officer, and Erika C. Collins, Member of the Firm, were quoted in Bloomberg Law Business & Practice, in “Deloitte, Epstein Becker Alliance Hit Overdrive During Covid-19,” by Sam Skolnik.

Following is an excerpt:

When Deloitte inked a partnership with workplace law firm Epstein Becker Green last year, skeptics wondered whether the two could compete with Big Law. Then Covid hit.

With furloughs and layoffs devastating the economy and remote work a new normal, labor and employment practices have benefited more than almost any other expertise, as corporations sought to navigate a patchwork of state and federal rules. …

At first the partnership meant trips between Europe and New York for meetings and dinners. The trips ended when coronavirus hit, but Guerra, Epstein Becker Managing Director Jim Flynn, COO Steven Di Fiore, board member David Garland, and others meet virtually every other Thursday morning.

The organizations also created a digital “collaboration platform” to communicate about clients …

Flynn said attorney-client privilege obligations have not become an issue.

The pact has yielded several joint bids for new work. In one, a large consumer products company sought to conduct an employee pay equity study that looked at gender and other metrics, “to make sure that they’re doing the right thing,” Di Fiore said.

The company—which the firms declined to identify—has 25,000 employees, half in the U.S. It initially awarded the work to a large law firm, but that arrangement faltered and the company chose the Deloitte/Epstein Becker bid, Di Fiore said. ... 

Erika Collins, formerly co-chair of Proskauer Rose’s international labor and employment practice, called Garland at Epstein Becker the day the partnership was announced. The chance to co-lead a similar practice at Epstein Becker was the main draw, she said.

Collins said she’d seen Big Four legal teams on the other side of international deals and wanted to work alongside Deloitte. The move was quickly accompanied by a workload she hadn’t seen since her days as an associate with Cooley Godward Kronish in Silicon Valley during the dot-com boom, she said. “It’s just been nonstop.”

Learn more about the Alliance for Employment Law and Workforce Management Services between Epstein Becker Green and Deloitte Legal.