Slaughter & May is the latest major law firm in London to life its associate pay, which is £100,000 including bonuses
The pay increase follows recent moves by firms in The City, including Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer and Clifford Chance which both lifted their pay for newly-qualified (NQ) pay to £100,000 as the pay war started by the large US firms lifted NQ pay rates.
The ‘race to the top’ is a tough call for the firms as they fight for associates with the extravagant US law firm pay offers (as below).
In a statement Slaughters said: ‘In accordance with our policy of keeping our associate remuneration competitive in the market, we have decided to increase our newly qualified associates’ remuneration (salary and bonus) to a minimum of £100,000.’
It is not clear what increases would occur beyond the NQ pay rates, although there will be upward adjustments.
The increase is significantly more than Slaughters announced at the end of last year, when the NQ pay rates were lifted to £83,000.
All eyes now turn to Allen & Overy and Linklaters whose pay rates remain at the ‘lower’ end of the spectrum along with Slaughters’ end-of-year rate, but there will clearly need to be adjustments there as the pay war continues.
Even with the major lifts in pay, the amounts set by the UK firms remain significantly below what the US firms like Kirkland & Ellis and Latham & Watkins are offering with K&E starting at £143,000 and L&W has an eye watering $190,000.