Law firm Russell McVeagh is investigating a complaint about a partner making inappropriate comments while attending a client event.

The partner allegedly made the comments at the event while under the influence of alcohol and has been restricted from the workplace while an independent investigation is underway.

Chair Malcolm Crotty said a more detailed statement following the outcome of the investigation will be released in the next 10 working days.

Dame Margaret Bazley, and Russell McVeagh chairman Malcolm Crotty, after releasing the findings of her independent report on the firm. Photo / Mark Mitchell
Dame Margaret Bazley, and Russell McVeagh chairman Malcolm Crotty, after releasing the findings of her independent report on the firm. Photo / Mark Mitchell

"The seriousness with which we are treating this investigation confirms our commitment to building a culture of trust and transparency.

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"Everyone in the organisation knows what is expected of them and we will not tolerate any inappropriate behaviour," Crotty said.

Dame Margaret Bazley released a damning report in July after a "work hard, play hard" culture of excessive drinking was exposed at the law firm amongst alleged incidents of sexual harrassment.

Bazley interviewed 250 people from the firm to get to the bottom of allegations that five summer clerks were sexually harassed over the summer of 2015/2016.

The 89-page report found junior lawyers and young staff were encouraged to "drink to excess" in a culture where crude, drunken and sexually inappropriate behaviour was rife throughout the firm.

Crotty acknowledged they made "serious mistakes" in how the 2015/16 allegations were handled.

"The board and partners of Russell McVeagh are deeply sorry for the impact that the incidents of 2015/16 have had on the young women involved and our people.

"We have apologised to the young women for the hurt and damage we caused. We recognise that they have shown great courage and applaud them for this.

"Their actions will result in meaningful change," Crotty said earlier this year.