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Career Center Survey Results: A Generation of Debtors (Part 1)

We received an overwhelming number of responses – 3,700 – to last week’s Career Center survey on debt and how it contributes to your decision on where to work.  We will introduce an overview of the results today, and present a more detailed analysis later in the week.

Overall, 93% of respondents report being in some kind of debt.  And for the vast majority of them, that debt plays a role in their decision on where to work:

  • 38% of respondents said they considered debt about as much as other factors.
  • 37% said they considered debt more than any other factor.
  • 24% said debt contributed very little or did not contribute at all.

Exactly how much debt are we talking about here?

Thanks to the astronomical (and rising) cost of attending law school, the most common type of debt burdening respondents is student loan debt:

  • 45% of respondents have $100,000 or more in outstanding student loans.
  • 40% have less than $100,000 in outstanding student loans.
  • 15% say they have none.

Most respondents don’t have a home to call their own:

  • 66% don’t have a mortgage.
  • 27% owe less than $500,000 on their mortgage.
  • 7% owe $500,000 or more on their mortgage.

On the brighter side, most respondents don’t have credit card or other debt:

  • 61% have no credit card or other debt.
  • 24% have less than $10,000 in credit card or other debt.
  • 15% have more than $10,000 in credit card or other debt.

To find out which law firms are paying top dollar in salaries and/or bonuses, head on over to the Career Center.  If you’re considering making a lateral move to another law firm or going in-house, experienced search consultants at Lateral Link can help you with your job search.

Earlier: Career Center Survey: Debt — The New Four-Letter Word