Pro-Rated Annual Bonus for Recent Clerks, or Nothing?

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Pro-Rated Annual Bonus for Recent Clerks, or Nothing?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Dec 26, 2017 12:41 am

I'm at a V10 and came over this fall after clerking.

I just got a nice clerkship bonus and can't complain too much, but I also thought I might get a pro-rated share of my class year's annual bonus. My firm, however, apparently does not give annual bonuses to recent clerks. In fact, the firm even measures hours for next year's bonus (ie December 2018 bonuses) from a point starting earlier this past year, and so not only do I not get an annual bonus this year, I might get a lower one next year on account of the weird way this firm measures hours.

I know I'm still being paid a lot, and maybe not getting a pro-rated bonus now makes sense, but I think if next year's bonus gets docked on account of when I started in 2017 after clerking, I'll be pissed.

How do other firms handle bonuses for recent clerks, or recent laterals generally? Curious to hear datapoints. Also: Merry Christmas everyone.

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Re: Pro-Rated Annual Bonus for Recent Clerks, or Nothing?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Dec 26, 2017 4:06 am

Check your firm policy. My firm pro-rates bonus based on when you start. My assumption is that this is the norm.

ETA: I mean firm pro-rates your hours requirement and then adjusts your bonus accordingly.

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Re: Pro-Rated Annual Bonus for Recent Clerks, or Nothing?

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Dec 27, 2017 8:49 pm

Not OP but relevant to my interests.

Wow, that is kind of terrible. I was considering trying to clerk (finishing third year) but it just doesn't seem to make economic sense after first or second year at the latest. I was just coming to terms with the pay cut as a long term investment but losing a bonus the following year makes it really untenable.

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Re: Pro-Rated Annual Bonus for Recent Clerks, or Nothing?

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Dec 27, 2017 9:50 pm

Wow. Definitely varies by firm.

My firm gives incoming clerks a prorated bonus, but returning clerks (i.e., those who were associates here, went to clerk, and are now returning after clerking) a full bonus, even if they arrive back the day before bonuses are paid out. Imagine that. One week you get your annual bonus of $65,000, the next week you get your clerkship bonus of $50,000, and the next week you get your $9,000 paycheck. $124k for two weeks of work.

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rpupkin

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Re: Pro-Rated Annual Bonus for Recent Clerks, or Nothing?

Postby rpupkin » Wed Dec 27, 2017 10:08 pm

Anonymous User wrote:I'm at a V10 and came over this fall after clerking.

I just got a nice clerkship bonus and can't complain too much, but I also thought I might get a pro-rated share of my class year's annual bonus. My firm, however, apparently does not give annual bonuses to recent clerks. In fact, the firm even measures hours for next year's bonus (ie December 2018 bonuses) from a point starting earlier this past year, and so not only do I not get an annual bonus this year, I might get a lower one next year on account of the weird way this firm measures hours.

If I'm understanding your post correctly, you started working after your firm's 2016-17 bonus period ended. If that's the case, then there's nothing to "pro-rate," as you worked zero hours during the bonus period. So this sounds like less of a "does not give pro-rated bonuses to recent clerks" policy and more of a "only gives bonuses to associates who actually worked some amount during the bonus period" policy—which is totally normal.

jd20132013

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Re: Pro-Rated Annual Bonus for Recent Clerks, or Nothing?

Postby jd20132013 » Wed Dec 27, 2017 10:37 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Wow. Definitely varies by firm.

My firm gives incoming clerks a prorated bonus, but returning clerks (i.e., those who were associates here, went to clerk, and are now returning after clerking) a full bonus, even if they arrive back the day before bonuses are paid out. Imagine that. One week you get your annual bonus of $65,000, the next week you get your clerkship bonus of $50,000, and the next week you get your $9,000 paycheck. $124k for two weeks of work.



Out the firm :)

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Re: Pro-Rated Annual Bonus for Recent Clerks, or Nothing?

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Dec 28, 2017 12:38 am

rpupkin wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:I'm at a V10 and came over this fall after clerking.

I just got a nice clerkship bonus and can't complain too much, but I also thought I might get a pro-rated share of my class year's annual bonus. My firm, however, apparently does not give annual bonuses to recent clerks. In fact, the firm even measures hours for next year's bonus (ie December 2018 bonuses) from a point starting earlier this past year, and so not only do I not get an annual bonus this year, I might get a lower one next year on account of the weird way this firm measures hours.

If I'm understanding your post correctly, you started working after your firm's 2016-17 bonus period ended. If that's the case, then there's nothing to "pro-rate," as you worked zero hours during the bonus period. So this sounds like less of a "does not give pro-rated bonuses to recent clerks" policy and more of a "only gives bonuses to associates who actually worked some amount during the bonus period" policy—which is totally normal.


Pretty sure I work at OP's firm and also clerked so was in the same situation. If it's the firm I think it is, rpupkin is correct that you didn't work during the 2016-2017 bonus period and therefore wouldn't get your bonus for that period. However, you have already started earning your 2018 bonus, and based on the bonus I received, I believe the firm does pro rate to some extent (although it's hard to know for sure).



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