When partners decide to leave a law firm, they often want to take some or all of their team with them. There is not a per se prohibition on such a practice, but partners should be careful on the timing of any solicitation of staff or associates. Robert Hillman has provided some guidance on this issue. Basically, it all depends on the timing.
A partner planning to withdraw from a firm should not recruit associates or staff of the law firm prior to giving the partnership notice of withdrawal. However, prior to notifying firm, a partner may recruit other partners.
Prior to withdrawal but after notice of withdrawal has been given, a partner should not recruit staff or associates of the firm “except to the extent reasonably necessary to provide services to clients likely to remain with the lawyer, and then only if the firm is notified in advance of the identity of individuals to be recruited.”
After withdrawal from a firm, a former partner may recruit associates and staff of the firm.