Troutman Sanders LLP Abovethelaw Above the Law blog.jpgThe dominoes are falling in Atlanta. Last night, Troutman Sanders made its associate pay raise announcement.
From the Fulton County Daily Report:

Troutman Sanders raised associate pay $15,000 across the board in its Atlanta, Washington, Virginia and North Carolina offices Thursday, with the starting salary going from $130,000 to $145,000.

The firm’s managing partner, Robert W. Webb Jr., announced the pay increase to associates at 5 p.m. Thursday.

The raises are effective Jan. 1, 2008, the same date the pay raise that Alston & Bird announced to its Atlanta associates last week goes into effect. Earlier this week, King & Spalding matched Alston’s $15,000 increase in starting pay, also effective Jan. 1, but did not raise pay for more senior associates.

Correction: According to a source at the firm, as well as various commenters, “Troutman’s DC and Tysons Corner offices have starting salaries of $160K as a result of the increase. (Troutman’s Atlanta office is starting at $145K).”
What’s most noteworthy about this raise, as pointed out to us by several tipsters, is that it’s “across the board” — not just for first- or second-year associates. In Atlanta, where salary compression for more senior associates is a serious issue, an across-the-board raise of $15,000 is good news indeed. It’s better than what has been announced thus far by Alston & Bird and King & Spalding.
More discussion, after the jump.


To those who complain about Atlanta associate pay, the partners at ATL firms would probably point out this fact, from the FCDR article:

When the raise takes effect in January, it will mean a 45 percent increase in starting pay in a mere two years for associates at Troutman, Alston & Bird and King & Spalding.

Now what about compression — will the Troutman Sanders raise help out on this front? One source at a rival firm notes: “[T]he scale appears less compressed than Alston & Bird’s — though Troutman was previously on a merit-based system, so I am not sure what 15K across the board translates to in terms of a scale.”
Update: A source at Troutman sheds more light on the matter:

1. After the first year, salaries are determined individually (“there’s no transparency at all”).

2. In terms of this raise, “$15K across the board means that whatever you make today, you’ll make 15k more” after the raise takes effect.

3. “This $15K is in addition to any merit raise an associate might get after the review process this fall. Both raises take effect on January 1, 2008.”

P.S. Random aside, from a tipster: “Troutman Sanders offers zero clerkship bonus. Nada. Zilch.”
Question: According to the firm’s NALP form, Troutman Sanders pays no clerkship bonus. But according to this comment, the firm offers a $10,000 clerkship bonus. If you can clear up the confusion, please email us.
Correction: Multiple sources have informed us, by email, that (1) Troutman now offers a $10K clerkship bonus and (2) this fall will be the first year of this policy.
Troutman Sanders joins bandwagon, raises first-years’ pay [Fulton County Daily Report]


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