A recent ABA Journal story had the headline, "NALP: 75% of Part-Timers are Female." The article was making the point that although virtually all law firms have part-time policies, they are (a) rarely used, and (b) disproportionately female. But the 75% female/25% male breakdown understates the true disparity. In reality, a huge proportion of female attorneys exit firms as they have children. Thus a better measure of differences between the genders is a comparison of the percentage of part-timers in the firm by gender.
The chart below [Click to Enlarge], which is generated from this NALP data, suggests a much larger imbalance among the male and female associates.
Two observations: (1) Among those associates who chose to work at corporate law firms [in reality, that is the type of firm listed in the NALP Directory], female associates are between 10.5 to 13.9 times more likely to work part-time than their male counterparts; (2) this dynamic -- surprisingly, to my mind -- has little or no relationship to firm size.