Please Explain AD Payscale

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valleyrat

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Please Explain AD Payscale

Postby valleyrat » Sun Sep 30, 2018 6:12 pm

Could someone provide an in depth explanation of the AD payscale ?

andythefir

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Re: Please Explain AD Payscale

Postby andythefir » Mon Oct 01, 2018 11:02 am

It’s essentially an elaborate ruse to justify paying AUSAs less than other attorneys, including FPDs. You can conceptually make anywhere between minimum and maximum on the scale, but almost everyone where my friends work (im not an ausa) makes the 25th or close to it. You also always lose ½ to ¾ of a year because the adjustment asks how much experience you have as of December, so unless you graduated in December, you won’t get credit for May-December.

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Re: Please Explain AD Payscale

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Oct 01, 2018 11:52 am

Yeah, your grade is determined by how many years of experience you have and then where you fall on the scale is up to your office. I agree that everyone I know is paid around the 25th percentile; although there are rumors of offices that handle it differently, I’ve never encountered that.

That said, you can get raises within the scale if you’re in the same grade for a while (I got a raise while sitting in AD 23 I think). That’s discretionary depending on whether the office has any money to give out raises in a given year and whether they decide to give you one, of course.

Keep in mind the AD scale doesn’t include locality pay.

Not sure it’s really a ruse, but yeah, it’s lower than the GS-scale, which is lower than the financial regulator agencies.

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Re: Please Explain AD Payscale

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Oct 01, 2018 4:05 pm

andythefir wrote:It’s essentially an elaborate ruse to justify paying AUSAs less than other attorneys, including FPDs. You can conceptually make anywhere between minimum and maximum on the scale, but almost everyone where my friends work (im not an ausa) makes the 25th or close to it. You also always lose ½ to ¾ of a year because the adjustment asks how much experience you have as of December, so unless you graduated in December, you won’t get credit for May-December.


Sorry, this is confusing to me (unsurprisingly given the AD scale). I'm starting in November at AD-25. In January I will be eligible for AD-26. When/how (if at all) will I get that raise?

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Re: Please Explain AD Payscale

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Oct 01, 2018 4:56 pm

IME the adjustment is done in April/May, so that’s when you’d get the raise. That’s assuming you are actually eligible in January - it’s based on your years of legal experience from the date you start working (not the year) and IME the problem is that most people don’t start working until the fall after graduation. So if you started working as an attorney in, say, October of the year you graduated, the following May isn’t yet an additional year of experience, but when you hit that year in October, you have to wait for the next May to get the raise. (Short answer: movement up a grade happens when the office makes its adjustment each year, same time each year, and not based on when you personally actually hit the years required to move up.)

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Re: Please Explain AD Payscale

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Oct 01, 2018 5:18 pm

Got it. Thanks. And there's no catch up or make up for the time in between? I started in January (deferred associate start time), so Jan is my actual date to go to 26. I thought HR said there was some type of catch up but could be totally wrong.

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Re: Please Explain AD Payscale

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Oct 01, 2018 5:33 pm

So if I’m coming in as an AD-21 in January 2019 as a 2016 grad, I will become an AD-23 in April 2020? Then in April 2021, I’ll become an AD-25?

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Re: Please Explain AD Payscale

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Oct 01, 2018 5:44 pm

So if you started working as a lawyer in Jan 2017, yes, you should move to AD 23 in April 2020 (first adjustment after you hit 3 years). Then you have to be at AD 23 for 2 years so will go up to AD 25 in April 2022 (or May. I just forget when the change takes effect).

I don’t know what a catch-up even is, so I’m not a good source for that question. I would just ask HR for your office - they’ll have all the answers to this.

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Re: Please Explain AD Payscale

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Oct 01, 2018 7:55 pm

Anonymous User wrote:So if you started working as a lawyer in Jan 2017, yes, you should move to AD 23 in April 2020 (first adjustment after you hit 3 years). Then you have to be at AD 23 for 2 years so will go up to AD 25 in April 2022 (or May. I just forget when the change takes effect).

I don’t know what a catch-up even is, so I’m not a good source for that question. I would just ask HR for your office - they’ll have all the answers to this.


I have to be at AD23 for two years before going to AD25? I thought I only had to have 5 years post-JD experience to become AD25

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Re: Please Explain AD Payscale

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Oct 01, 2018 9:33 pm

AD 25 does require 5 years experience, but if you started working in January 2017, 5 years of experience comes January 2022, so you'd move up to AD 25 the following April/May; unless you started with 4 years of experience (in the middle of AD 23) you're going to have to wait 2 years to get to AD 25, because AD 23 is years 3 and 4 of experience. (When the pay scale says years 0-2 for AD 21, that means anything above zero and less than 2 years; when it says 3-4 years for AD 23, that means anything over 3 years and less than 5.)

(I understand your timeline to look like this:
- graduate 2016
- start working = Jan 2017
- one year experience = Jan 2018 --> get hired at this level, AD 21
- two years experience = Jan 2019 --> no change in April/May, still AD 21
- three years experience = Jan 2020 --> move up to AD 23 in April
- four years experience = Jan 2021 --> no change in April/May, still AD 23
- 5 years experience = Jan 2022 --> move up to AD 25 in April)

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Re: Please Explain AD Payscale

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Oct 01, 2018 9:49 pm

And what happens at 9+? Do you move up steps or anything like you do in JS/GS? Or do you just stay stagnant unless you become deputy chief or something?

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Re: Please Explain AD Payscale

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Oct 01, 2018 10:16 pm

I'm afraid I haven't got there yet, so I don't know. I don't think it's automatic (if steps are automatic - not sure), but I think you can get raises within that range. Again, probably depends on the office and how much money they have for raises and your evaluation.

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Re: Please Explain AD Payscale

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Oct 02, 2018 7:17 am

I feel like the AD pay scale is really unfair, compared to other attorneys in the Government, even within DOJ. I am a DOJ prosecutor at Main Justice and our pay in comparison is 30-45k more, guaranteed.

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Re: Please Explain AD Payscale

Postby andythefir » Tue Oct 02, 2018 10:47 am

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Anonymous User wrote:And what happens at 9+? Do you move up steps or anything like you do in JS/GS? Or do you just stay stagnant unless you become deputy chief or something?


Most folks I know get little raises year over year until they max out (at 20-30 years in) and cruise there for the rest of their careers.

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Re: Please Explain AD Payscale

Postby andythefir » Tue Oct 02, 2018 10:48 am

Anonymous User wrote:I feel like the AD pay scale is really unfair, compared to other attorneys in the Government, even within DOJ. I am a DOJ prosecutor at Main Justice and our pay in comparison is 30-45k more, guaranteed.


In my state prosecutors just got considerable raises past what AUSAs make. The DOJ has assumed the prestige of the job will entice people to take less money, but that won’t be true forever.

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Re: Please Explain AD Payscale

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Oct 02, 2018 11:51 am

andythefir wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:I feel like the AD pay scale is really unfair, compared to other attorneys in the Government, even within DOJ. I am a DOJ prosecutor at Main Justice and our pay in comparison is 30-45k more, guaranteed.


In my state prosecutors just got considerable raises past what AUSAs make. The DOJ has assumed the prestige of the job will entice people to take less money, but that won’t be true forever.

I think this depends very much on the state. AUSAs still make much more than state prosecutors where I am (I make probably $30k more than a state prosecutor at my level).

Don’t get me wrong, I’d happily take more, but I’m just under 6 figures and can live on that where I am just fine. No interest in going biglaw (and in my market even biglaw is pretty puny). I get if you’re weighing SDNY against a NYC biglaw firm your calculus might be different.

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Re: Please Explain AD Payscale

Postby JakeTappers » Tue Oct 02, 2018 12:34 pm

andythefir wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:I feel like the AD pay scale is really unfair, compared to other attorneys in the Government, even within DOJ. I am a DOJ prosecutor at Main Justice and our pay in comparison is 30-45k more, guaranteed.


In my state prosecutors just got considerable raises past what AUSAs make. The DOJ has assumed the prestige of the job will entice people to take less money, but that won’t be true forever.


Don't you max out at 9+? Or are you confirming that you slowly move up within that range until you get to "max"? I (apparently mistakenly) figured that with locality you'd be making about 140-150 after 9+ years in all major markets.

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Re: Please Explain AD Payscale

Postby andythefir » Tue Oct 02, 2018 3:01 pm

JakeTappers wrote:
andythefir wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:I feel like the AD pay scale is really unfair, compared to other attorneys in the Government, even within DOJ. I am a DOJ prosecutor at Main Justice and our pay in comparison is 30-45k more, guaranteed.


In my state prosecutors just got considerable raises past what AUSAs make. The DOJ has assumed the prestige of the job will entice people to take less money, but that won’t be true forever.


Don't you max out at 9+? Or are you confirming that you slowly move up within that range until you get to "max"? I (apparently mistakenly) figured that with locality you'd be making about 140-150 after 9+ years in all major markets.


Nooope, not the way that works at all. Management will deliberately slow you down on the scale so that when you hit 9+ there’s room for raises for many years. Most AUSAs I know at the 9 year mark make $90ish, you don’t hit $140-150 until year 25 or 30.

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Re: Please Explain AD Payscale

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Oct 02, 2018 4:08 pm

andythefir wrote:
JakeTappers wrote:
andythefir wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:I feel like the AD pay scale is really unfair, compared to other attorneys in the Government, even within DOJ. I am a DOJ prosecutor at Main Justice and our pay in comparison is 30-45k more, guaranteed.


In my state prosecutors just got considerable raises past what AUSAs make. The DOJ has assumed the prestige of the job will entice people to take less money, but that won’t be true forever.


Don't you max out at 9+? Or are you confirming that you slowly move up within that range until you get to "max"? I (apparently mistakenly) figured that with locality you'd be making about 140-150 after 9+ years in all major markets.


Nooope, not the way that works at all. Management will deliberately slow you down on the scale so that when you hit 9+ there’s room for raises for many years. Most AUSAs I know at the 9 year mark make $90ish, you don’t hit $140-150 until year 25 or 30.


Well, 1) holy shit. 2) I'm making 100+ with locality and 80+ at AD-25 without locality. I figured this was going to be 5k pay raises from here on out but it sounds like they will be even more incremental and meaningless (without some sort of leadership role). Particularly with Trump taking out raises to locality and civil servants, my outlook on the whole thing just got pretty dim. I knew a guy who was at 140+ after 8 years but didn't take into account his prior prosecutorial years in the state and other fed agencies. Probably was at year like year 15. Fuckkkkkk

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Re: Please Explain AD Payscale

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Oct 02, 2018 5:45 pm

Crazy that 9th year AUSAs are making what 3rd year DOJ attorneys are making. When and why were AUSAs put on the AD scale instead of GS? What radical self hating lawyer thought this was a good idea

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Re: Please Explain AD Payscale

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Oct 02, 2018 6:14 pm

andythefir wrote:
JakeTappers wrote:
andythefir wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:I feel like the AD pay scale is really unfair, compared to other attorneys in the Government, even within DOJ. I am a DOJ prosecutor at Main Justice and our pay in comparison is 30-45k more, guaranteed.


In my state prosecutors just got considerable raises past what AUSAs make. The DOJ has assumed the prestige of the job will entice people to take less money, but that won’t be true forever.


Don't you max out at 9+? Or are you confirming that you slowly move up within that range until you get to "max"? I (apparently mistakenly) figured that with locality you'd be making about 140-150 after 9+ years in all major markets.


Nooope, not the way that works at all. Management will deliberately slow you down on the scale so that when you hit 9+ there’s room for raises for many years. Most AUSAs I know at the 9 year mark make $90ish, you don’t hit $140-150 until year 25 or 30.


From AD-25 -> AD-29, you're getting like 5k raises though, right?

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Re: Please Explain AD Payscale

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Oct 02, 2018 6:17 pm

andythefir wrote:
JakeTappers wrote:
andythefir wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:I feel like the AD pay scale is really unfair, compared to other attorneys in the Government, even within DOJ. I am a DOJ prosecutor at Main Justice and our pay in comparison is 30-45k more, guaranteed.


In my state prosecutors just got considerable raises past what AUSAs make. The DOJ has assumed the prestige of the job will entice people to take less money, but that won’t be true forever.


Don't you max out at 9+? Or are you confirming that you slowly move up within that range until you get to "max"? I (apparently mistakenly) figured that with locality you'd be making about 140-150 after 9+ years in all major markets.


Nooope, not the way that works at all. Management will deliberately slow you down on the scale so that when you hit 9+ there’s room for raises for many years. Most AUSAs I know at the 9 year mark make $90ish, you don’t hit $140-150 until year 25 or 30.

Um, what? This just isn’t universally the case at all. I’m AD-25 and I’m just under 6 figures. 9+ year folks definitely make a chunk more than I do.

Keep in mind the published scale doesn’t include locality pay.

andythefir

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Re: Please Explain AD Payscale

Postby andythefir » Tue Oct 02, 2018 9:49 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Um, what? This just isn’t universally the case at all. I’m AD-25 and I’m just under 6 figures. 9+ year folks definitely make a chunk more than I do.

Keep in mind the published scale doesn’t include locality pay.


That's true, locality pay can make a big difference. All the AUSAs I know are in border/rural districts.

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Re: Please Explain AD Payscale

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Oct 03, 2018 9:33 am

andythefir wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Um, what? This just isn’t universally the case at all. I’m AD-25 and I’m just under 6 figures. 9+ year folks definitely make a chunk more than I do.

Keep in mind the published scale doesn’t include locality pay.


That's true, locality pay can make a big difference. All the AUSAs I know are in border/rural districts.


Not to double up but from AD-25 -> AD-29, you're getting like 5k raises though, right? That seems somewhat mandatory.

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Re: Please Explain AD Payscale

Postby JakeTappers » Thu Oct 18, 2018 1:45 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
andythefir wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Um, what? This just isn’t universally the case at all. I’m AD-25 and I’m just under 6 figures. 9+ year folks definitely make a chunk more than I do.

Keep in mind the published scale doesn’t include locality pay.


That's true, locality pay can make a big difference. All the AUSAs I know are in border/rural districts.


Not to double up but from AD-25 -> AD-29, you're getting like 5k raises though, right? That seems somewhat mandatory.


Tripling up on this question, since it was never answered. I'm pretty okay with my starting salary in major market (even though 1/2 take home will goto rent). But want to make sure the next five years I'm getting some raises, not just nominal ones--even if it peters out at AD29+.



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