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In-House Salary Range Breakdown: Not a Good Time to Be One of the Little Guys
[EDITOR'S NOTE: This is part II in an ongoing series rolling out exclusive data on salaries in the legal departments of large companies and the salary range for in-house lawyers. Click here to read part I on the recent salary bump for division GCs.]
Apparently, 2010 was a TERRIBLE year to be the little guy.
Last week we gave you a sneak peek at ALM's "Law Department Compensation Benchmarking Survey, 2010 Edition," which revealed that the middle-men (division GCs) really cleaned up in 2010. Well, unfortunately the same cannot be said for their lower-ranking compatriots.
All five non-management in-house positions in the survey saw their wages drop this year, with the "attorney" position taking the biggest hit. The median salary for that position dropped from $117,500 in 2009 to $111,200 this year for an adjusted trend of -7.5 percent. That position also saw a 6.6 percent drop in its median bonuses.
The market did not get much better for recent graduates, either, as those legal greenhorns saw median salaries drop nearly 4.8 percent. Thanks to a 5.3 percent bonus increase, though, those grads ended up with their total cash compensation numbers down by only 3.3 percent. Meanwhile, senior attorneys saw their numbers go down across the board and ended up with their total cash dropping 3.6 percent.
In the non-management category, high-level specialists and staff attorneys fared the best, but still saw their wages fall off by around 0.5-0.6 percent. Both of those positions saw a healthy boost in the form of bonuses, though, as high-level specialists saw their bonuses jump up by 12.9 percent and staff attorneys got a whopping 15.6 percent cherry-on-top.
All five positions saw their total cash numbers fall, with the attorney position again taking the biggest hit: An 8.2 percent decrease. (For a national look at GC pay don't forget to peek at Corporate Counsel's 2010 GC Compensation Survey.)
[CorpCounsel.com will be rolling out more pieces of data from the "Law Department Compensation Benchmarking Survey, 2010 Edition" over the coming days, so be sure to keep checking back.]
Thomas Huddleston Jr. can be contacted at THuddleston@alm.com.