They say it's no domino effect, but Blank Rome lawyers have increased associate pay rates - as if they weren't high enough - and DLA Piper have followed suit. Starting pay in New York? $150,000 2

They say it’s no domino effect, but Blank Rome lawyers have increased associate pay rates – as if they weren’t high enough – and DLA Piper have followed suit. Starting pay in New York? $150,000

After a day of calling Philadelphia firms to see whether they planned on responding to the recent New York and California salary increases and getting answers to the tune of “it depends on what the market does,” one firm threw a curveball at about 4:30 p.m.

Blank Rome announced Wednesday that it would increase starting salaries in its New York, Washington, D.C., and Philadelphia markets.

First-year associates in Philadelphia will get a $10,000 increase to $135,000, firm managing partner Carl M. Buchholz said. New York first-years will get a $15,000 increase to $150,000 and Washington first-years will get a $10,000 bump to $145,000, he said.

And it wouldn’t be a normal day if 20 minutes after Blank Rome called, another firm called to say it too increased salaries — a coincidence, not a domino effect.

On Tuesday night, DLA Piper announced internally that it would raise starting salaries in many of its markets, releasing that information Wednesday. Philadelphia first-year associates will make $135,000, office Managing Partner James Brogan said. New York first-years will make $160,000, and Washington, D.C., and Chicago first-years will earn $145,000, he said.

“We want to attract and retain excellent lawyers,” Buchholz said.

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