The Firm Leading The Law Firm Pay Rate War in London . . Any Why Layoffs May Not Be Bad This Recession

The Firm Leading The Law Firm Pay Rate War in London . . Any Why Layoffs May Not Be Bad This Recession 2

The London City-based US law firms continue on their wage-hiking ways with Weil Gotshal & Manges lifting the salaries for newly qualified lawyers to £165,000 a year (USD311,000). But it still sits behind the firm leading the pay rate war in London.

Akin Gump, another of the Big Law US law firms, pays its newly qualified lawyers £179,000 a year (USD320,000).

And the slumping UK currency has been a boon for those City lawyers working for US law firms as they are paid in US dollars.

The move by the firm places Weil Gotshal salary level, which take effect from 1 January 2023, behind fellow US-based law firms Latham & Watkins, Kirkland & Ellis, both of which come in at £170,000 per annum. And of course behind the leading pay rate made by Akin Gump.

Weil Gotshal’s decision to liftNQ salaries to £165,000 comes as the firm’s third NQ pay rise this year, after the firm, which specializes in bankruptcy work, lifted its starter salaries from £145,000 to £150,000 in April, and later to £160,000 a year.

Toughter Times Ahead

However despite the great money, it is clear that there will also be higher attrition rates with the top law firms, as those lawyers who do not quite make the billing or output demands sought by their employers let them go.

However, following the 2008-2009 recession there was a purge of associates by many larger law firms which saw them struggling to meet demand for the rebounding market, which is why it is unlikely that major layoffs will occur now.

Many law firms remember those days well and do not want to be left ‘short changed’ by having too few lawyers ready to reap the legal rewards that come from a stronger market and yet another talent war.

But some under performing sectors, like tech and IPO deals, are likely to see layoffs occurring.

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