Fross Zelnick Lehrman & Zissu Reviews | Glassdoor

Fross Zelnick Lehrman & Zissu Reviews

Updated July 19, 2017
21 reviews

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21 Employee Reviews

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  1. "Great Company Culture and Benefits, Mediocre Salary/Growth Potential"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Legal Assistant in New York, NY
    Former Employee - Legal Assistant in New York, NY
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    I worked at Fross Zelnick Lehrman & Zissu full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Fross was a great company to work for. The environment was relaxed, benefits were generous, and everyone I worked with was very kind.

    Cons

    Ultimately the salary wasn't competitive enough for NYC and the position itself is not designed for much growth.

    Advice to Management

    Offer higher salaries to legal assistants.


  2. Helpful (2)

    "Disorganized, "high-school like" environment"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - International Trademark Paralegal in New York, NY
    Former Employee - International Trademark Paralegal in New York, NY
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    I worked at Fross Zelnick Lehrman & Zissu full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    You very rarely work overtime here, and a lot of times are left without work to do. If you are preparing to go to law school, this is a great opportunity for you to be able to get paid while studying for the bar and making good connections with the attorney's at the firm.

    Most of the attorneys here are extremely bright, but some of the younger associates are often entitled and want you to be more of a personal assistant. However if you get to work for some of the more established partners, you can form great references for future employers.

    Cons

    As a Paralegal, you are not valued at all and are considered easily replaceable, which is probably one of the main reasons for the massive turnover. Each attorney has their own preference of how things should be done, so when cases are moved around teams, there is a complete lack of organization which leads to many hefty mistakes.

    A lot of "lifers" there tend to be very clicky, and frankly abuse their close relationships and pass their work on to more junior people with little instruction. Then when mistakes are made, the new person is often blamed for making mistakes on things they were never trained on

    Advice to Management

    -Design a proper training program to last longer than just the first week.
    -Make sure there is more oversight over firm policies
    - Create a standard procedure on how to operate files and cases

  3. Helpful (2)

    "RUN FOR YOUR LIFE"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Legal Assistant in New York, NY
    Former Employee - Legal Assistant in New York, NY
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    I worked at Fross Zelnick Lehrman & Zissu full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Some of the attorneys and support staff are extremely kind. Free lunches once every three or four months. Literally nothing else.

    Cons

    Where do I begin? For starters - I should have been tipped off with the hard sell from my recruiter, and the fact that they extended an offer about 2 hours after my interview. This shows how little time they take because turnover is INCREDIBLY high there. I worked there for less than a year and in that time span more than half of the legal assistants/support staff quit. As a legal assistant, you will mostly be printing out emails and putting them in the appropriate folders. You will occasionally get to draft emails yourself, or file trademarks. You learn very little to nothing about trademark law, and absolutely nothing about copyright or patent law. The work is extremely boring when there is any (I typically had about an hour's worth of work to do a day). Human Resources is terrible and does not listen to new employees. There is a lot of shady crap that goes on here. You get paid for 35 hours of work a week and are REQUIRED to take an hour lunch break. You get time and a half after 40 hours of work. Meaning - you work 5 hours of overtime at your normal rate and then hit time + half after that, which means unless you are getting a lot of overtime (which is not at all common), you will make very little money. The pay is terrible, the commute is terrible, and the staff is largely untrustworthy. There are a few assistants who have been there long enough that they think it is a high school environment and that they "run the place" and do whatever they please with absolutely no consequences. This is absolutely the worst job imaginable and I cannot recommend enough that you stay away. The only people who continue to work here are people who likely cannot get a job anywhere else. All of their IT systems are ridiculously antiquated and will never be updated because half of the attorneys can't read email or use Microsoft Word. I've saved the best for last - they hosted a sexual harassment seminar where we were informed that a woman being in the same room as a man constitutes consent! We also received frequent emails about how to dress appropriately for work and reminding us of basic hygiene. If there is anything that is indicative as to how bad this firm is - there is a woman at the firm who frequently literally POOPS on the wall in the bathroom. That is what you're getting yourself into.

    Advice to Management

    Get your Human Resources some support - it is a vastly understaffed department . Listen to your staff when they have complaints of sexual harassment and other forms of harassment. Learn to treat people with respect and dignity. Designate a legitimate and official paralegal manager who oversees people's workload and can help with support staff issues.


  4. Helpful (2)

    "Paralegal"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Paralegal in New York, NY
    Former Employee - Paralegal in New York, NY
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    I worked at Fross Zelnick Lehrman & Zissu full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    I would say the only pro was a lot of free lunches for group meetings.

    Cons

    This is by far the worst place I've ever worked. I have never seen employees treated worse. There is one HR person for the entire firm, but, there might as well be none because she could not care less about any of the staff. No one here even pretends to value the secretaries / paralegals. If you are unemployed and desperately need a pay check, you should take this job. Otherwise, if you value your life at all, you should run the other way.

    Advice to Management

    The atrocities a staff member has to deal with in the day-to-day are unforgivable.


  5. Helpful (3)

    "Frankly abusive"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Paralegal in New York, NY
    Former Employee - Paralegal in New York, NY
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    I worked at Fross Zelnick Lehrman & Zissu full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Most people are nice, casual dress is allowed and ubiquitous

    Cons

    There is a very high turn around at Fross. At some point in the firm's history, they decided on a suspect business model: save money by investing very little in support staff, and stomach the cost of the inevitable revolving door. Raises are nonexistent, as is agency in your position. I was moved from attorney to attorney over night with no negotiation. The number of attorneys I worked for doubled without a respective increase in salary. My negotiation requests were met with flat nos.

    On top of that, this firm is exceptionally disorganized. There is no universal protocol - every attorney has their own particular routine. However, assistants are often moved from attorney to attorney, and different paralegals fill in for each other to cover absences. Multiple attorneys regularly work on the same file and accordingly, bring their teams with them. Because in these cases, assistants usually work separately on the same file, they each employ their own attorney's filing protocol and the files are often very disorganized as a result. The lack of a universalized system is bad enough, but add to that the high turn over. Not only is everyone maintaining records differently and in conflicting manners, but every couple months, there's a huge wave of new, green employees. When I left, it was standard for new people to train newer people. By new people, I mean 22 year olds fresh out of college with no paralegal experience to speak of. That is how major mistakes are made in a law firm.

    In short, there is no incentive to work hard here. The work is not particularly interesting - maybe that's a personal opinion, but the position of legal assistant consists of mostly glorified data entry. And if you're not getting paid a competitive salary or receiving competitive benefits (the firm's health insurance is terrible), then there isn't any motivation to produce high quality work. Additionally, as mentioned, the firm is extraordinarily disorganized, which makes it difficult to complete projects in a satisfactory manner.

    Since I've left, I've realized more and more how abusive Fross's employee policies are. I would avoid working in this office if at all possible.

    Advice to Management

    Invest more in your support staff - you will be pleased with the results.


  6. Helpful (4)

    "Terrible Environment"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Legal Assistant in New York, NY
    Current Employee - Legal Assistant in New York, NY
    Doesn't Recommend

    I have been working at Fross Zelnick Lehrman & Zissu full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    It's an easy job if that's what you're looking for. Depending on your department you can get some exposure to IP law working with big name clients. Casual dress code. Once you get efficient in your job, you can use the other 6-7 hours of doing nothing while you're there (forget leaving work early- you'll have a timecard so you'll have to make up the time) to apply for jobs.

    Cons

    Where do I even begin. The firm is just a depressing place...It's a stale, cold, and depressing environment where your eyes hurt from staring at a crappy computer screen all day long. If you're looking for rewarding, substantial work, look elsewhere - as a legal assistant you'll spend your time going through your bosses emails and docketing deadlines. You become a personal calendar. Some of the partners treat their paralegals like butlers, so if you end up working for one have fun ordering them food and fetching them water on a daily basis. There's really no culture - no social events or intramural teams or anything. I was offered the position after a 20 minute interview. That should tell you how much they value a fit and hiring the right person, it's a revolving door of young people coming in and out.
    The pay is a joke compared to other firms in the city - really, if you're interested in law school, find another firm to work at that has a more general practice, better pay, and treats their employees better. If you're dead set on IP then sure, Fross is renowned for their work in that area, but realize that this is the ONLY area of practice they do.

    Advice to Management

    How about an actual formalized training program to start? Spend a week or two with legit classroom type events teaching legal assistants the RIGHT way to navigate IPPO and address different matters, instead of rushing to have someone else give them a brief 5 min run through when they actually encounter the issue and have no idea what to do.


  7. Helpful (3)

    "Helps you figure out what you DON'T want in a job"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Legal Assistant in New York, NY
    Former Employee - Legal Assistant in New York, NY
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook

    I worked at Fross Zelnick Lehrman & Zissu full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Hours are flexible in terms of what you can make-up. Come in late? Leave late. Come in early? Go ahead and leave early, or leave at your regular time and get that OT, kiddo.

    Casual dress. Quiet office (unless you are in an area with a certain attorney).

    Tip: always dress semi-professionally. That way, nobody questions you on your way to a job interview. Tip 2: schedule job interviews around your lunch hour.

    Cons

    As a paralegal, the person/people you work for can make or break your 8 hours. Personally, I love it when people snap their fingers at me to get my attention, or beckoning me over like you would a dog - in fact, I really, really love communicating with my boss primarily via post-its, too.

    For someone fresh out of college, it's not a terrible place to start as you'll figure out pretty quickly what you want from a boss and from a career. You will be overworked as a paper pusher, but when you think about it, it's just typical admin stuff.

    Advice to Management

    Get over yourself - literally nobody knew the FZLZ name in the legal world, broadly speaking. Sure, you may be a titan of the trademarks sector, but don't pretend you're something you're not.

  8. Helpful (2)

    "Staff Accountant"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Staff Accountant in New York, NY
    Former Employee - Staff Accountant in New York, NY
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook

    Pros

    Job Experience for field of study (limited to what management knows)

    Cons

    Environment becomes stale, too shady when people get fired, just not a very good environment to be in. if you can weather this then it might be the place for you

    Advice to Management

    Have more social events. sports events, activities that actually requires team development.


  9. Helpful (3)

    "Discouraging Finance"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Accounts Representative in New York, NY
    Former Employee - Accounts Representative in New York, NY
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    I worked at Fross Zelnick Lehrman & Zissu full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    All legal staff were very professional & some of the secretary staff were also.

    Cons

    The finance department was very disorganized. The staff comradery and cross train were nonexistence, new employees suggestions were not accepted. Their logic was the firm has been around a long time changes are not needed. I hated working there.

    Advice to Management

    Re-train your HR Representative, she do not understand when an employee wants to keep something private she should not go to the employee's immediately supervisor and revealing the discussion without permission from the said employee or to other Dept Heads.


  10. Helpful (4)

    "Waste Of My Time: Minimal New Skills Acquired."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Legal Assistant in New York, NY
    Former Employee - Legal Assistant in New York, NY
    Doesn't Recommend

    I worked at Fross Zelnick Lehrman & Zissu full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Roomy, personal work space. The ability to make up missed work hours via coming in early, or leaving later than regularly scheduled hours was convenient. Also, there are more than a few, personable and friendly people in various departments, who are easy to converse with and helpful as it relates to questions revolving around work/the office.

    Cons

    Interviewed and was offered one position, however on my start date, I was told that things had changed within the firm and that I was needed in another department. I was taken aback, as I would have preferred to have been made aware of new changes before coming in. However, being an optimist, I did not view this as unprofessionalism or gross disorganization; I instead assumed that HR was being gracious and was avoiding retracting the initial offer. I was told that I'd be trained for the new position and I accepted. Unfortunately, that didn't quite happen. I did receive one formal training regarding the document management software that was used. Aside from that, I was given menial, inconsistent tasks, from day to day and learning nothing else in regards to training. My time was terribly under utilized by my manager. I requested work daily and was told, that there was nothing for me, or that I needed a specific training on another system to be able to perform certain tasks. Other times I asked for work, I was told that it was really slow but that things would pick up in a matter of weeks. After a while, it seemed that I was simply bothering the department manager and assistant when I asked for work. With that said, often I found myself sitting at my desk for hours with no work, all the while Partners and other employees were walking by glancing at me with a confused look as to why I was even there. Embarrassing! After weeks of this, when I came in one morning, I was told by HR that I was being let go. I asked the reason, and I was told that the manager of my department felt as though I weren't catching on and that I'd made too many mistakes. I was floored. I was not even presented with a notice of separation. As mentioned above, I simply didn't work on anything enough to make any critical mistakes or to even catch onto anything for that matter. With that said, it's difficult for me to believe I was let go due to poor performance. I feel as though they evaluated their workload and determined I wasn't needed. I also feel as though the manager of my department and manager's assistant simply were not fond of me.

    Whatever the reason, I am relieved to be out of that environment. I like to work, and I enjoy receiving direction and learning things. I also like to work in an environment in which people aren't walking around rolling their eyes , cursing and speaking disparagingly of others.

    Advice To New Hires: I made the mistake of not going to HR when I wasn't given work. I was concerned with stepping on toes and honestly believed work would pick up. Don't do this! Speak up, or else things can be insinuated that actually did not occur.

    Advice to Management

    Be prepared for new hires. Map out what it is that you want them to learn and what projects you want them to work on daily. Let them know what your expectations are of their performance and be clear on what their job responsibilities are. Be cognizant of their training. Don't simply pass them off on other employees and assume that they are getting concise & consistent training from others. Check in with them to determine if they are in fact getting the training they need to perform their job. Don't allow your indifference to an individual to result in wasted money for the company and wasted time for the employee.


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