Poor Kirkland & Ellis associate ripped to shreds by judge who wanted to speak to a partner instead

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“I think it’s outrageous, irresponsible and insulting”


A bewildered third-year associate at global mega-firm Kirkland & Ellis has discovered life as a corporate lawyer isn’t all long lunches and freebies.

According to US media reports, poor Aulden Burcher-DuPont (pictured below) — a litigation specialist at Kirkland’s New York office — felt the wrath of a federal judge this week, because the firm had sent him and not a partner to an important conference.


Judge Nicholas Garaufis was less than impressed the elite MoneyLaw firm, which pays its London NQs a staggering £124,000 a year, sent rookie Burcher-DuPont to defend its client, Facebook, against very serious lawsuits reportedly filed by more than 20,000 claimants.

It’s no doubt an important case — one which involves accusations the social networking giant connected terrorists — so when junior lawyer Burcher-DuPont rocked up to a status conference, Judge Garaufis couldn’t help but make his feelings known.

He is reported to have told a presumably trembling Burcher-DuPont he thinks it’s “outrageous, irresponsible and insulting” the firm “didn’t send a partner here to talk about this kind of problem which implicates international terrorism and the murder of innocent people in Israel and other places”.

The enraged judge continued:

I’ve been a lawyer for 41 years and a judge for 16 years and I’m not having this discussion with you.

When former Mayer Brown lawyer Burcher-DuPont stepped in to tell Garaufis the top lawyers on the case had been called out to Texas the day before, the red-eyed judge responded:

Maybe Kirkland & Ellis can scrounge up a partner who isn’t busy in Texas to come see a lowly judge in the Eastern District of New York.

Ouch, ouch and ouch.

Parties have been told to return to court later this week. We hope for poor Burcher-DuPont’s sake he will not be in attendance.



Judge Garaufis sounds like a bit of a self important knob.



Low level American state judges are mostly like that because they’re elected. In a lot of states you don’t have to even be a lawyer to get elected. What an absolutely shitheap of a judicial system.



What is the purpose of such a conference – presumably if it’s only about case management, surely a junior can easily handle it?



“life as a corporate lawyer isn’t all long lunches and freebies”

No, it isn’t. You should have said:

“life as a corporate lawyer isn’t all getting beasted by a partner who promised a client an unrealistic turnaround time then dropped you in it by having to achieve that timeframe”



My first thoughts when I read the headline were “but I thought Peter Smith wasn’t sitting any more”.


mr pineapples

Me to


Mrs Pineapples

It should be “too” not “to”, dear. Do improve your grammar.



Do less.



You’re grammar



Oooooh, check her out!


Lord Lyle of Law

LC. Can you please get people who are qualified lawyers to comment on legal stuff. This article is incomprehensible. What about a transcript? Then lawyers might have some prospect of understanding it.



A corporate lawyer, why not even a litigator.



“Aulden Burcher-DuPont (pictured below) — a litigation specialist at Kirkland’s New York office”

Try again.


Not Amused

US judges are notoriously bad.

What happens therefore is that most commercial contracts in the US contain an arbitration clause in order to avoid these crazy local courts. That is the market speaking – most people given the choice, choose not to use the domestic courts. I can’t think of a more damming indictment.



I think most commercial contracts contain arbitration clauses as they are normally private and confidential and therefore the companies practices and methods (among others) avoids public scrutiny.

Although I do not disagree with you that some judges are pretty unprofessional – as in this instance.



This isn’t a crazy local court like a county court….. This it the US Federal Court.



Poor chap will probably never work again after this publicity.



Bollocks. He will continue to have a much more successful career than you and Katie



That lad will dine out on this story.

Boring lawyers love to latch onto any court story, regardless of what it entails.


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