As in the past, the vast majority of New Jersey homegrown law firms aren’t in a position to compete in the recent associate salary arms race pervading Big Law in New York and elsewhere, a race that seems to be more an object of curiosity for firm leaders in the Garden State rather than extra motivation to examine their own pay scales.

“I really think the firms we’re reading about are a relatively small group of firms serving a different type of client than we are,” said W. Raymond Felton, co-managing partner of 90-lawyer Greenbaum, Rowe, Smith & Davis in Iselin, where the starting salary has sat at $125,000 for several years.

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