Bird & Bird boosts junior lawyer pay packets to £62,000

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By Thomas Connelly on

City law firm keeps hold of 88% of its autumn NQs


Bird & Bird has treated its London-based newly qualified (NQ) lawyers to a modest pay boost, which will see salaries upped by 5% to £62,000.

The move means NQs — who were until today on £59,000 — will now pocket an extra £3,000.

Trainees have also had extra cash chucked their way. First year trainees will now walk away with £38,000, up from £36,000 (a rise of 6%), and those in year two will now take home £40,000, up from £38,000 (a rise of 5%).

Today’s salary boost puts Bird & Bird’s NQs on par with junior lawyers at a host of City outfits including Eversheds, Nabarro, Pinsent Masons, Stephenson Harwood and Trowers & Hamlins.

Bird & Bird — which offers around 18 trainee lawyer positions each year — also took the opportunity to trumpet a solid autumn 2016 retention rate of 88%.

Holding on to 15 of its 17 qualifiers, the firm revealed that its intellectual property team will take seven new associates. Five are heading to commercial, two will be based in finance, and one will begin life as a lawyer in Bird & Bird’s corporate team. All will be based at the firm’s London headquarters.

Bird & Bird’s head of graduate and trainee management, Lynne Walters, said:

We are delighted to have retained so many of our trainees and look forward to seeing them take their careers to the next level here at Bird & Bird.

Today’s result marks a slight improvement on the firm’s 2015 performance. Then, Bird & Bird saw three trainees — from a cohort of 18 — head for the exit, resulting in a retention figure of 83%.