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Weil Gotshal boosts newly qualified solicitor pay to £115,000

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The London office of US giant Weil Gotshal & Manges has increased pay by 15%, according to a report from a usually reliable blog.

This means that the firm’s newly qualified solicitors (NQs) will see their salaries shoot up from an already rather impressive £100,000 to a mildly mind-blowing £115,000.

To put things in perspective, that’s what a pupil barrister in a legal aid set earns + £100k. It’s of course less than the £124,000 NQs receive at Latham & Watkins and the dollar-tied £135,000 they walk away with at Kirkland & Ellis. Could the apocalypse be nigh?

Further up the ranks, Weil’s four-year qualified solicitors will now be earning £172,500. That’s significantly more than most equity partners at regional commercial law firms.

Weil hasn’t yet responded to Legal Cheek’s request for confirmation of the increases — but we’ll add it in as soon as we get it.

Update: Tuesday 13 September — Weil has confirmed the £115,000 pay rise.

58 Comments

Nostradamus NQ

The apocalypse is far from nigh. By the end of this bull market even Eversheds will be paying NQs £1000,000. This is just the beginning.

(7)(2)

Anonymous

I am sure their greedy partners will happily take a pay cut to make that happen.

Keep on dreaming.

(5)(0)

Nostradamus NQ

*£100,000*

(2)(0)

Northern HR command

Extra, extra! PAY RISES AT IRWIN MITCHELL!

Here’s a tasty bit of inside info: at 4:30pm today, just in time for Happy Hour, top City firm Irwin Mitchell are planning to drop the mother lode: Trainees are getting bumped up to 60k* and NQs straight up to 200k** together with potential fat, juicy 30% bonuses***. The partners have unanimously agreed to a pay cut to reward the toilers accordingly!

*paid in Vietnamese Dongs
** paid in Zimbabwean Dollars
*** upon billing 40,000 billable hours/p.a.

(43)(0)

Lolcano

This is top banter. 🗝

(16)(0)

Irwin Mitchell NQ

It’s 2:25am and still no news of my pay rise. Where are my dollars?!

(1)(1)

Anonymous

Anyone know about raises coming at the Northern titan DWF?

Andrew Leatherland promised me rivers of gold, milk and honey.

(7)(0)

Anonymous

They’ve got a sale on leather sofas I hear

(12)(0)

Trumpster

You have to lick the honey off his leather chapz.

(0)(0)

Anonymous

“Play with me leather, the honey will soon flow.”

(4)(0)

Anonymous

This is getting pretty crazy now.. Predictions for when the Magic Circle will hit £100k NQ?

(3)(2)

US NQ

Not crazy at all. Just another Wall Street firm which is reaching the current market rate for firms of its kind in London.

Skadden is bound to up its NQ rate any moment now too, Shearman might follow up to £100k soon too. But that’ll be it, and the gulf between MC and US will still be a thing.

(6)(0)

Anonymous

So you think future rises will be modest rather than the significant boost of this year? Is that really likely if the US firms continue to pull ahead with their salaries?

(0)(1)

Anonymous

Why don’t you go and ask the equity partners over at Slaughters and Links mate?

Judging by the facts that SM hadn’t raised NQs past £71k and Links pay ~£82k with bonus included, I think you’ve got your answer right there.

(5)(0)

Anonymous

@US NQ 12:14 – Skadden upped its UK pay to the US rate 2 months ago…

(0)(0)

Lolcano

Tell that to the hacks at LC who know nothing.

(5)(0)

Anonymous

Skadden have upped theirs to 118k but hasn’t been published yet

(1)(0)

Anonymous

What other US firms have upped but not published?

(1)(0)

Anonymous

Any word if Ropes & Gray will be moving theirs?

(1)(15)

Weightman

No one gives a flying f*ck.

(2)(4)

Anonymous

LOLZ

(0)(0)

Anonymous

When will similar rises take place in the City mid-market?

(2)(0)

Anonymous

Doubt it, far too greedy and leveraged to go for big raises.

Better jump ship mate.

(3)(0)

Anonymous

Re 12.18pm

I would be seriously surprised if the MC rate isn’t £100k within 2-3 years, and then circa £80k for the mid-market (re. 1.00pm). Who agrees with me?

Bmx.

(6)(2)

Clergs

Hi BMX, ROF no longer interests you?

(2)(0)

Anonymous

I agree..surely more than £100k though, or more associates will jump ship.

(0)(0)

Anonymous

Surely the MC firms can’t afford to pay upwards of £100k to their NQs and the adjusted rate to those more senior. They aren’t as profitable as the US firms and I can’t see partners wanting their share reduced.

(1)(1)

Chinny

Any idea on raises at Dorsey & Whitney? Locke Lord? Faegre Baker? Cooley?

(4)(0)

Anonymous

McDermot? K&L Gates?

(1)(0)

Anonymous

Dewey Botchit & Howe?

(1)(0)

Anonymous

Turd & Turd?

(2)(0)

Anonymous

A usually reliable blog?

Lmao

(2)(1)

Anonymous

A bit of a change from the usual description by Alex of RoF as “Partner’s version of Bebo, RoF…”

(0)(0)

Pongobulb

Let’s be honest – law firms have SO many applicants, that they don’t need to be “too” hasty when it comes to increasing salaries. People will still be very willing to work at Slaughters regardless of it not increasing pay.

I think the MC rates and US will stay the same for the next few years (i.e. no dramatic uplift) apart from those firms that haven’t already increased pay.

(1)(0)

Concerned associate

What about top City firm Addleshaws?

When are they increasing the NQ rate to 80k+?

(1)(1)

Anonymous

The banter is delightful in the comments to this article – I bet Alex & Co must secretly love it and laugh all day.

(5)(1)

US NQ

Many of these US firms require 2400 billables for the year. The renumeration that Magic Circle firms offer are only acceptable if you are working 1900 (or less) per year.

Sadly, I feel trapped as I have become accustomed to my generous pay and really couldn’t deal with a pay cut – I appreciate that sounds crazy but you become used to a certain lifestyle and it is difficult to unsubscribe from that. I despise the hours I work, the fact that weekends are unpredictable and the awful mood that I am in 24/7.

Perspective.

(20)(0)

Anonymous

Being a lawyer is easy. I rock up to the office at 11am, eat some chocolate cake, bill some clients for an hour and go for lunch in the Shard. Lunch gets boozy, I have about 4 pints and start to feel sleepy so I head home for the afternoon. Don’t know why people complain.

(2)(0)

K

You must be a barrister.

(6)(0)

Trevor (Future Trainee)

Would you have trained at the Magic Circle on reflection? I suppose on £80-85k a year (NQ) you can have a pretty good lifestyle anyway!

(2)(0)

Lydia

Hi bmx.

(0)(0)

Trevor (Future Trainee)

Do people on RoF sleep with each other? Would give a whole new dimension to the blog’s famed ‘inside knowledge’.

(0)(2)

Anonymous

“Trevor”, “Future Trainee”.

Ok.

(1)(1)

Anonymous

Yes, definitely!

(0)(0)

Anonymous

Except the majority of NQs at MCs aren’t on 80-85k I’m afraid. Even that amount as a base (at least) is still reserved for the US shops.

(1)(0)

Anonymous

@US NQ

Which US firms require 2400 billable hours a year?

The target billable hours at at least 3 of the US firms that are paying £115k+ are <1900

(1)(1)

US 3PQE

That’s the bare minimum which you need to pump out in order to survive.

Anyone who’s aiming to take a shot at partnership must churn out at least the 2,200+ mark, which will also qualify you for a tasty bonus.

Serious players are up near the 2,500-2,700 marks, the more the better.

God-like characters try to tackle the mythical 3k barrier. There are some in my shop’s D.C. office who had reportedly managed 3,100 in good years. Utterly INSANE.

(3)(0)

Anonymous

3100? Yeah… OK!

(1)(0)

V8

Whoa, to bill 3000+ in a year you must squeeze out 12-14 hour days 5 times a week + weekends on a regular basis, probably without taking any holiday leave either.

Talk about living to work…but then I guess the Yanks love that kind of high octane work ethic.

(0)(0)

Anonymous

It’s not even 12-14 hour days, it’s 12-14 hours of billable time each day. That’s at least 18 hours each day 5 days a week for 48 weeks a year. Sounds like BS to me.

(1)(1)

Destitute

Any news on raises at Bindmans?

I’d love to be paid more than the current £350 a fortnight as a 4PQE associate.

(2)(0)

Anonymous

What other US firms are for rises I wonder… obviously other than Reed Smith, which is obvs a granted

(0)(0)

Anonymous

No major raises mate, currently considerations to go up to £65k max. – this is info straight from HR.

(1)(1)

Rumours

BLP upped to £70k but you didn’t hear it from me.

(0)(1)

Equity Partner

Where are we on CPs?

(1)(0)

V8

Come again?

(0)(0)

NQ

Norton Rose Fulbright chucked up NQ rates to £72k.

I ain’t complaining.

(0)(0)

Extra extra

Lol @ Ashurst to be stuck in the NQ mid-60s rate like a bad smell. All of the SC well above it.

I’d be thinking of jumping ship outta there, the shop is going from bad to worse.

(0)(0)

Comments are closed.