The revenue picture for law firms in 2012 was bright for large law firms — and bleak for smaller shops.

The Survey of Law Firm Economics, a joint project of The National Law Journal and ALM Legal Intelligence, shows that at law firms with more than 150 attorneys, revenue per lawyer (RPL) rose by 8.5 percent last year. But at law firms on the other end of the spectrum — those with one to nine attorneys — revenue plunged by 8.1 percent. The average per-lawyer gross receipts at larger firms were $499,518, compared with $302,818 at the small firms.

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