When fresh-faced summer associates arrive at law firms across the country in several months, will they find that the Free Lunch Express has run out of track? The economy is in shambles, prestigious law firms are sending associates and staffers packing right and left, and clients are railing against exorbitant legal fees and frivolous spending. Given the harsh climate, legal experts say it's no time to throw lavish parties, plan flashy outings and eat the cost of pricy lunches in an attempt to woo summer associates.

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