2L Small FIrm Salary Question

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Anonymous User
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2L Small FIrm Salary Question

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Feb 12, 2011 1:30 pm

So, I am in a secondary market (pretty large city though) and I have an interview with about a 10 person law firm. This firm seems pretty upscale and its office is in a high rise suite. I get the impression that this is more "boutique-ey" than just small law....Regardless, if they ask me my salary expectations, what should I say? I made about 4k a month last year at a firm in the same practice area. That equals close to about 48k a year. I originally thought that 1,250 a week might be a reasonable floor as that would equal about 60k a year. However, I was thinking that maybe I should say 1,500 a week as a starting point. Hopefully they have a set scale but seeing as how small they are I am not sure if they regularly hire 2L's. Help? Thanks. :)

Edit: I forgot to add- mid t1 with top grades. Thanks!

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holdencaulfield
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Re: 2L Small FIrm Salary Question

Postby holdencaulfield » Sat Feb 12, 2011 2:05 pm

Anonymous User wrote:So, I am in a secondary market (pretty large city though) and I have an interview with about a 10 person law firm. This firm seems pretty upscale and its office is in a high rise suite. I get the impression that this is more "boutique-ey" than just small law....Regardless, if they ask me my salary expectations, what should I say? I made about 4k a month last year at a firm in the same practice area. That equals close to about 48k a year. I originally thought that 1,250 a week might be a reasonable floor as that would equal about 60k a year. However, I was thinking that maybe I should say 1,500 a week as a starting point. Hopefully they have a set scale but seeing as how small they are I am not sure if they regularly hire 2L's. Help? Thanks. :)

Edit: I forgot to add- mid t1 with top grades. Thanks!



I was never asked salary expectations in any of my 1L or 2L interviews. Also, $1,500 might be a bit high for an average 10 person law firm. However, I don't think you are out of line in expressing it as your salary expectation if they ask. They certainly won't turn you away for hoping to earn above what they offer. If they ask I would simply say, "I would like to earn $1,500/week." Then be quite and see what they say.

Anyways...I bet they have a set scale unless they rarely hire SA's.

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Re: 2L Small FIrm Salary Question

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Feb 12, 2011 3:17 pm

holdencaulfield wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:So, I am in a secondary market (pretty large city though) and I have an interview with about a 10 person law firm. This firm seems pretty upscale and its office is in a high rise suite. I get the impression that this is more "boutique-ey" than just small law....Regardless, if they ask me my salary expectations, what should I say? I made about 4k a month last year at a firm in the same practice area. That equals close to about 48k a year. I originally thought that 1,250 a week might be a reasonable floor as that would equal about 60k a year. However, I was thinking that maybe I should say 1,500 a week as a starting point. Hopefully they have a set scale but seeing as how small they are I am not sure if they regularly hire 2L's. Help? Thanks. :)

Edit: I forgot to add- mid t1 with top grades. Thanks!



I was never asked salary expectations in any of my 1L or 2L interviews. Also, $1,500 might be a bit high for an average 10 person law firm. However, I don't think you are out of line in expressing it as your salary expectation if they ask. They certainly won't turn you away for hoping to earn above what they offer. If they ask I would simply say, "I would like to earn $1,500/week." Then be quite and see what they say.

Anyways...I bet they have a set scale unless they rarely hire SA's.


Thanks. Yeah, I hope they have a set scale, unless they really would consider 1,500 a week or something like that. That's nice to know that you don't think 1,500 a week is so unreasonable as to make a bad impression.

Edit: Also, would it be crazy in ITE to try to get them to up the salary if they come out with something like 900 a week?

Sup Kid
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Re: 2L Small FIrm Salary Question

Postby Sup Kid » Sat Feb 12, 2011 3:24 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Edit: Also, would it be crazy in ITE to try to get them to up the salary if they come out with something like 900 a week?

For a 1L summer position, $900/week at a 10-person firm is not out of the ordinary. It probably won't hurt to ask, but ITE ~$10k for a 1L summer firm job is significantly better than what many of your peers will receive. I would probably just take it and be happy you found a paying 1L job.

Edit: That's roughly $22/hour, and I think the basic rule of thumb for students working at small firms is that $20/hour is standard, so you'd already be (slightly) ahead at $900/week.
Last edited by Sup Kid on Sat Feb 12, 2011 3:26 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Nicholasnickynic
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Re: 2L Small FIrm Salary Question

Postby Nicholasnickynic » Sat Feb 12, 2011 3:26 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
holdencaulfield wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:So, I am in a secondary market (pretty large city though) and I have an interview with about a 10 person law firm. This firm seems pretty upscale and its office is in a high rise suite. I get the impression that this is more "boutique-ey" than just small law....Regardless, if they ask me my salary expectations, what should I say? I made about 4k a month last year at a firm in the same practice area. That equals close to about 48k a year. I originally thought that 1,250 a week might be a reasonable floor as that would equal about 60k a year. However, I was thinking that maybe I should say 1,500 a week as a starting point. Hopefully they have a set scale but seeing as how small they are I am not sure if they regularly hire 2L's. Help? Thanks. :)

Edit: I forgot to add- mid t1 with top grades. Thanks!



I was never asked salary expectations in any of my 1L or 2L interviews. Also, $1,500 might be a bit high for an average 10 person law firm. However, I don't think you are out of line in expressing it as your salary expectation if they ask. They certainly won't turn you away for hoping to earn above what they offer. If they ask I would simply say, "I would like to earn $1,500/week." Then be quite and see what they say.

Anyways...I bet they have a set scale unless they rarely hire SA's.


Thanks. Yeah, I hope they have a set scale, unless they really would consider 1,500 a week or something like that. That's nice to know that you don't think 1,500 a week is so unreasonable as to make a bad impression.

Edit: Also, would it be crazy in ITE to try to get them to up the salary if they come out with something like 900 a week?


Remember that if you honestly think there will be negotiations, you will not get what ever number you first ask for. I mean, think about how bartering works. I'm not saying to start at 2k and be aggressive, and I'm just reminding you to think about all the facts.

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JazzOne
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Re: 2L Small FIrm Salary Question

Postby JazzOne » Sat Feb 12, 2011 3:30 pm

They probably won't ask you about salary because they already know what they're willing to pay SAs. If they do ask, I think $1,500 is reasonable, but I also wouldn't be surprised if they pay less. Not every firm pays SAs the same weekly salary as first-year associates. You'll have to ask some questions to find out exactly how the firm operates. Also, there is more to a firm than salary. I am spending half my summer at a firm that pays below market, but the firm has no buy-in for partnership. I'm not exactly sure how that works, but they sold me on the firm's low leverage and attractive partnership policies.

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Re: 2L Small FIrm Salary Question

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Feb 12, 2011 3:51 pm

JazzOne wrote:They probably won't ask you about salary because they already know what they're willing to pay SAs. If they do ask, I think $1,500 is reasonable, but I also wouldn't be surprised if they pay less. Not every firm pays SAs the same weekly salary as first-year associates. You'll have to ask some questions to find out exactly how the firm operates. Also, there is more to a firm than salary. I am spending half my summer at a firm that pays below market, but the firm has no buy-in for partnership. I'm not exactly sure how that works, but they sold me on the firm's low leverage and attractive partnership policies.


OP: good point man. It looks that most of the attorney's have a partnership interest, so that'd be cool. I don't think they hire very often and if you can get into one of those firms where they only open up to a new associate like once every 5 years or so, that could be a golden opportunity.

To the dude earlier: I am a 2L, didn't you read the thread title and my post? :wink:

Sup Kid
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Re: 2L Small FIrm Salary Question

Postby Sup Kid » Sat Feb 12, 2011 4:02 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
JazzOne wrote:They probably won't ask you about salary because they already know what they're willing to pay SAs. If they do ask, I think $1,500 is reasonable, but I also wouldn't be surprised if they pay less. Not every firm pays SAs the same weekly salary as first-year associates. You'll have to ask some questions to find out exactly how the firm operates. Also, there is more to a firm than salary. I am spending half my summer at a firm that pays below market, but the firm has no buy-in for partnership. I'm not exactly sure how that works, but they sold me on the firm's low leverage and attractive partnership policies.


OP: good point man. It looks that most of the attorney's have a partnership interest, so that'd be cool. I don't think they hire very often and if you can get into one of those firms where they only open up to a new associate like once every 5 years or so, that could be a golden opportunity.

To the dude earlier: I am a 2L, didn't you read the thread title and my post? :wink:

Haha my bad, I guess I'm becoming dyslexic. Still, I wouldn't be overly surprised if a small firm (even if its a boutique) pays law students only $22/hour.




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