Biglaw, Money, Paralegals, Skaddenfreude

Skaddenfreude: A Peek at Paralegal Pay

100 dollar bill Above the Law Above the Law law firm salary legal blog legal tabloid Above the Law.JPGAssociates, curious about how much your paralegal handmaidens earn? Paralegals, curious about how much your colleagues around the country make? We’ve collected some data points for you.
We asked you for information about paralegal salaries. We received these responses (all class years are undergraduate rather than law school years):

(1) intellectual property manager (“essentially a high-level paralegal position”), in-house position, Boston’s South Shore, class of 2001: $80,000 (plus bonus and stock options; “straight 9 to 5 workday”; also attending law school in the evening);

(2) paralegal / case assistant, complex litigation defense, in the San Francisco office of a large law firm, class of 2004: $38,000 (plus bonus; last year’s bonus was ~$1,000; roughly 45 hours/week, but if in trial, 50-60 hours/week);

(3) paralegal, real estate and tax, in the Washington, D.C. office of a large law firm, class of 2005: $41,000 (plus bonus of ~$1,500, and overtime pay of ~$15,000; 45-50 hours/week);and

(4) paralegal, litigation, at a large New York law firm, class of 2004: $38,000 (“plus lots of and lots of overtime; I haven’t completed a year, but expect to make about $60K-$65K”).

Our last respondent, who expects to earn about $60K-$65K this year, had these additional comments:

That won’t be at the high-end among our paralegals — I know of at least a couple people here who have made over $90K in a year as a paralegal.Workload varies depending on case demand, but I personally vacillate between 50 – 60 hour weeks and 100+ hour weeks, when I feel like I can stand to bank some extra cash or am caught up in the middle of a big production. The highest earning paralegals are basically working 17 hour days every day and making double time the whole time.

Interesting stuff. If you’re a paralegal willing to share your salary information, feel provide it in an anonymous comment to this post.
We are always looking for more income info for future installments of Skaddenfreude, our legal professional salary survey. If you’re willing to contribute, please see the submission guidelines provided here. Thanks!
Earlier: Skaddenfreude: Paralegal Salaries, Please

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