paralegal salaries

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DavidYurman85
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paralegal salaries

Postby DavidYurman85 » Mon Aug 09, 2010 10:11 pm

does anyone have any information regarding starting salaries for paralegals? specifically for big law firms in the dc/ny market?

thanks!

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Re: paralegal salaries

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Aug 09, 2010 10:18 pm

For DOJ positions, usually around 40,000 with a 10,000 raise after a year or so. Almost no OT required.

For biglaw, usually between 38,000 to 40,000 with a 1,000 bonus and few thousand dollar raise after a year. OT required, and usually boosts the salary at least 12,000.

Both are usually 2 year positions for new grads, career paralegals are a whole different ballgame.

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Re: paralegal salaries

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Aug 09, 2010 10:30 pm

I made 35k as a base salary in biglaw in NYC in 2007. As an other poster mentioned it is your OT that really bumps up your paycheck. I think I made around 55k for the year. For what it is worth, I hated the experience and I never got to spend the money since I spent 50-60 hours a week working. Some firms treat their paralegals like gold too, I'd check with Akin Gump.

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General Tso
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Re: paralegal salaries

Postby General Tso » Mon Aug 09, 2010 10:39 pm

the internet legal research group salary data page has salary ranges for paralegals http://www.ilrg.com/employment/salaries/

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DavidYurman85
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Re: paralegal salaries

Postby DavidYurman85 » Tue Aug 10, 2010 8:32 am

thanks everyone!!

any info on if compensation varies by practice group? i hear that paralegals in patent groups/litigation make more than other practice areas?

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Re: paralegal salaries

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Aug 10, 2010 11:11 am

I started in 2007 at $40,000. OT was based on any hour after 7 in a day. My "hourly" salary was also calculated on a 35 hour work week, so that boosted the amount I was paid per hour of overtime. I got $800-1700 in yearly bonus. I got 5-7% raises in 2008 and 2009, so that by 2009 if I worked even 50 hours a week on average I easily surpassed $70,000 per year. I got a $15 allowance for dinner after 6:00, which was generally enough to also buy myself something to eat for lunch the next day, so I spent very little of my personal money on food. I got a car home after 8:00 or 9:00 (I forget).

This was a V10 firm in NYC.

Why did I go to law school again!??

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Re: paralegal salaries

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Aug 10, 2010 11:18 am

V20, DC. Started at 42,500 in 2008, with small ~3% raises each year in 2009 and 2010. 1K bonus at the end of 2009. OT any hour past 8 in a day, hourly rate based on a 41 hour work week (no clue why). In 2009, I almost doubled my salary with OT pay.

Similar benefits to the above poster: $25 for meals ordered via seamless if working 1.5 hours of overtime, or $20 for meals ordered by other means or at restaurants. Taxis after 8pm and on weekends.

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Re: paralegal salaries

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Aug 10, 2010 11:25 am

V50 NYC for 1 year. $37,500 starting salary + time and a half for overtime + $1,000 bonus + tons of vacation time. For the year that I worked I probably made roughly $45,000, maybe closer to $50,000.

It should be noted that I worked for a generally quiet practice group (in corporate) right when the economy fell apart, so opportunities for overtime were slim.

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Re: paralegal salaries

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Aug 10, 2010 5:34 pm

At one NYC boutique firm, I made 50K base and 60K bonus, with the offer of a significant increase for a second or third year. Same benefits as described below. Look beyond the major firms, where you get less responsibility and pay at a commensurate level.

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johnnyutah
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Re: paralegal salaries

Postby johnnyutah » Tue Aug 10, 2010 6:13 pm

Can you get a paralegal job with a JD, or will they be nervous you'll leave?

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General Tso
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Re: paralegal salaries

Postby General Tso » Tue Aug 10, 2010 6:16 pm

how does one land a paralegal job at a large firm? seems like fairly desirable work.

oneforship
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Re: paralegal salaries

Postby oneforship » Tue Aug 10, 2010 6:17 pm

Anonymous User wrote:At one NYC boutique firm, I made 50K base and 60K bonus, with the offer of a significant increase for a second or third year. Same benefits as described below. Look beyond the major firms, where you get less responsibility and pay at a commensurate level.


Was this 60K WITH a bonus, or a 60K bonus? If the latter, then wow.

2009 Prospective
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Re: paralegal salaries

Postby 2009 Prospective » Tue Aug 10, 2010 6:55 pm

General Tso wrote:how does one land a paralegal job at a large firm? seems like fairly desirable work.


It's especially desirable for those who like compiling three ring binders.

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DavidYurman85
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Re: paralegal salaries

Postby DavidYurman85 » Wed Aug 11, 2010 11:31 pm

General Tso wrote:how does one land a paralegal job at a large firm? seems like fairly desirable work.


there a few different ways but one of the most effective methods (at least that i know of in dc) is to work with a head hunter or legal recruiting firm. another option is to start looking around for big law paralegal announcements during the spring. apparently this is when most firms begin to recruit new grads.

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Re: paralegal salaries

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Aug 14, 2010 11:17 pm

oneforship wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:At one NYC boutique firm, I made 50K base and 60K bonus, with the offer of a significant increase for a second or third year. Same benefits as described below. Look beyond the major firms, where you get less responsibility and pay at a commensurate level.


Was this 60K WITH a bonus, or a 60K bonus? If the latter, then wow.


It was 110K total. And (to 2009 Prospective) I rarely made binders. There's a lot of variety in paralegal work; you just have to find the right place.

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Re: paralegal salaries

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Aug 15, 2010 1:50 am

johnnyutah wrote:Can you get a paralegal job with a JD, or will they be nervous you'll leave?


Guy with a JD, middling credentials, applied for my job when I was leaving. They didn't even look at him because he had the JD. Feels bad, man.

I made 35k-40k working at a V20 as a paralegal, depending on raises. They didn't give OT, but they gave a raise when they got rid of it (was outside the US, I think it's mandatory to have OT in the US). Worked average of 50 hours a week, not bad at all.

Pretty sure they pay better and with more benefits inside the US. But the paralegal-abroad schtick is f'n sweet if you can get it.

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johnnyutah
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Re: paralegal salaries

Postby johnnyutah » Tue Aug 17, 2010 11:24 am

Anonymous User wrote:
johnnyutah wrote:Can you get a paralegal job with a JD, or will they be nervous you'll leave?

Guy with a JD, middling credentials, applied for my job when I was leaving. They didn't even look at him because he had the JD. Feels bad, man.

Lame.

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clintonius
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Re: paralegal salaries

Postby clintonius » Tue Aug 17, 2010 11:28 am

Anecdotal, the V25 or so paralegal sister of an acquaintance of mine (who was also a paralegal at a V10) said their firm received multiple paralegal applications from HLS grads in 2008. I don't think any of them got jobs. Of *course* you're going to leave when you get better options.




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