A few years ago, we met with a young lawyer at a mid-market litigation firm who expressed a great deal of annoyance with a story that said partners at a certain group of Am Law 200 firms made, on average, the same amount as senior associates at elite firms.

Factual? Yes. The average compensation for all partners, including equity and nonequity, is less than $400,000 at several Am Law 200 firms. And at some of the most profitable Big Law firms, especially when taking bonuses into account, some associates make more than that in a year.