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Hogan Lovells ups newly qualified pay to £90k plus bonus in package worth up to £117k

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Exclusive: Transatlantic firm makes MoneyLaw move

International player Hogan Lovells has upped the pay packets of its newly qualified (NQ) solicitors by a whopping £12,000.

Until recently, those qualifying into the firm’s swish City of London headquarters enjoyed a not too shabby salary of £78,000. Now, the corporate outfit has bumped this figure by 15% and will be paying its newbie associates £90,000 a year, Legal Cheek can reveal. Hogan Lovells confirmed its junior lot will also be eligible for a discretionary bonus of up to 30% on top of the new and improved salary, giving a potential total pay package of up to £117,000. The rise — which is effective from 1 May 2019 — is more than seven times the rate of UK inflation which is currently at 2%.

News of today’s MoneyLaw move means Hogan Lovells has leapfrogged a host of City law firms — including two out of five of the magic circle — in the NQ pay league. As things stand, NQs at Herbert Smith Freehills earn £85,000, while their counterparts at elite duo Allen & Overy and Linklaters receive base rates of £83,000 respectively.

The 2019 Legal Cheek Firms Most List

Confirmation of the pay uplift follows similar moves made by the magic circle in the last month which has been sparked by soaring US law firm London office NQ salaries. In May Freshfields raised the game when it announced it was increasing its NQ salary to £100,000. Clifford Chance and Slaughter and May followed Freshies’ lead in June and matched the six-figure sum. It’s worth noting that both CC’s and Slaughters’ NQ pay figure is a combination of basic salary and bonus. While it is unclear exactly how much CC pays out bonus aside, Slaughters has confirmed a baseline salary of £92,000. You can check out what all the top firms pay on Legal Cheek’s Firms Most List.

Hogan Lovells confirmed trainee pay has also increased by £1,000 for both first and second years. The firm’s London trainees will earn £46,000 in their first year, rising to £51,000 in their second year — representing a rise of 2% across the board. The firm offers around 50 training contracts each year.

Aside from the very enviable salaries, what’s it like working at the transatlantic giant? Hogan Lovells scored A*s for training, peer support and those all-important perks, and received commendations in all three categories at the Legal Cheek Awards earlier this year.

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77 Comments

Kirkland NQ

Where’d you get that picture I took last Friday on the way to the yacht?

(14)(4)

Anonymous

If you actually were a lawyer at Kirkland you wouldn’t be posting dross on Legal Cheek at 1:21pm.

(42)(2)

Anonymous

Due diligence you gimp. Lots of due diligence.

(4)(0)

Kirkland NQ

Ha, you’re thinking of the usual drones, not the NQ thoroughbreds with the ear of the top brass at the ‘land, on the highspeed non-stop service to partnership, with a designated Lambo spot in the office parking garage.

(0)(0)

citylawyer

It is important to remember this is a headline figure only. Most of the information provided by good UK these days around remuneration is smoke and mirrors designed to make pay look better than it is.

It’s misleading for outfits like Legal Cheek to report salary figures inclusive of the maximum possible discretionary bonus. The reality is that bonuses at most good UK firms are pretty meagre and always have been. They are rarely above 10%. Very few NQs at HL will be taking home anything close to £117,000.

(0)(0)

citylawyer

It is important to remember this is a headline figure only. Most of the information provided by good UK these days around remuneration is smoke and mirrors designed to make pay look better than it is.

It’s misleading for outfits like Legal Cheek to report salary figures inclusive of the maximum possible discretionary bonus. The reality is that bonuses at most good UK firms are pretty meagre and always have been. They are rarely above 10%. Very few NQs at HL will be taking home anything close to £117,000.

(24)(9)

Anonymous

It may well be an hours linked bonus – i.e. get top marks in your appraisal and bill 2500 hours you get 30%.

Dentons is like this. You can in theory get up to something like a 30% bonus. Most people don’t get one at all or get a small one as they don’t meet their targets or bill just over it.

(4)(0)

Anonymous

Billing 2,500 hours is a mug’s game that will make you shoot blood out of your c*ck. no point in working so hard for a little bit of extra cutter

(11)(0)

Captain Lear

@RoF – Seriously – wtf is with the photo on this article? It has absolutely zero relevance.

Are you suggesting that NQs on £90k are going to be able to afford private jets?

Or more likely, that only earning £90k as an NQ will force them to moonlight as hookers to be able to afford to live in London?

(18)(2)

Rupert; a US Firm associate

Feed for fowl.

(2)(1)

Anonymous

You pooed yourself at school.

(2)(0)

Anonymous

Surely CMS has to follow soon?

(5)(6)

Anonymous

why?

(14)(0)

£70k TOO LOW

ANY NEWS ON RAISES AT WATSON FARLEY WILLIAMS?!?!?!

(9)(0)

Anonymous

Is it really just £70k still?

(2)(0)

Anonymous

70k seems generous for WFW

(15)(2)

Anonymous

Retard

(2)(3)

Lager fiend

Surely CMS has to follow soon?

(0)(4)

Anonymous

why?

(2)(0)

CMS

Because we are so topppppp

(8)(2)

Anonymous

CMS will hand over extra biscuits from 1 July. You heard it here first.

(0)(0)

Anonymous

‘MoneyLaw’ is such a nauseating phrase.

(43)(0)

Anonymous

Indeed!

Prime Minister Jeremy Corbyn will end this greed!

A supertax of 75% on all moneylaw incomes!

A wealth tax on partnerships and banks!

A socialist governor of the Bank of England!

FOR THE MANY, NOT THE FEW!

VOTE CORBYN

(3)(31)

Anonymous

DDD LLL

(1)(0)

Anonymous

Meanwhile we are forced to work in bunk-beds and still sat on £70k. With the latest financial results there is no chance of a raise for us and I expect my bonus to be paid (in arrears) in digestive biscuits. Thank god I am off.

(10)(1)

Anonymous

Rich Tea only this year.

(4)(0)

Anonymous

Where are you off? What area?

(0)(0)

Anonymous

PE

(1)(0)

Anonymous

NQs at HSF do not earn £85,000. The base salary is £78,000. Please stop reporting NQ salaries incorrectly.

(35)(1)

Anonymous

Any news on HSF?

(1)(0)

Anonymous

Apart from that it is not £85,000 currently, no.

(12)(0)

Anonymous

This is the stuff wet dreams are made of

(0)(0)

Anonymous

http://www.drynites.co.uk can help
You there.

(1)(0)

Anonymous

HL is a considerably nicer place to work than the Magic Circle and most American firms – I think it’s a pretty good deal overall.

(37)(6)

Anonymous

Yessss all the moneyyys will eversheds follow?

(0)(0)

Anonymous

No.

(9)(0)

Anonymous

How do you know fooool

(0)(0)

Anonymous

Cos the Shed is supa shet

(0)(0)

Anonymous

Eversheds have got to be the most two-bit outfit I’ve ever come across in my life – the font they use as default in their (usually poorly drafted) documents makes it look like a bloody A-level project

(8)(1)

House of the Rising Sun

I just assumed that they have become so high-tech, AI, app-tastic, that they have gotten rid of a mouse and keyboard in favour of a new-age stencil for Paint.

The only thing is the reality is not the movies, so it looks like they’ve let their kids loose in the office.

(0)(0)

Anonymous

Important question – did other PQE levels see similar jumps? Or was it just the headline grabbing NQ rate that went up?

(2)(0)

Anonymous

It’s been increased for all PQEs too

(6)(1)

Anonymous

Not by anywhere near the same % though

(1)(0)

Anonyman

I wonder how long it will be until NQ salaries hit £200k…given how lean some US outfits are (along with the often brutal working environments) surely such a high salary isn’t actually that far off?

(4)(1)

K&E Trainee (PE Team)

Within 5 years we should see the likes of Kirkland, Simpson Thacher, Vinson & Elkins all offer NQs £200k.

(5)(12)

Anonymous

Word.

Let’s hope the MC follow suit!

(3)(1)

Anonymous

Whether we should is different to whether we will.

(0)(1)

Anonymous

Vinson & Elkins?! Give me a break.

(8)(0)

Anonymous

What’s wrong with Vinsons lol? They currently pay comparable dough to LW/KE, its entirely likely they will keep that position and go for the 200k mark once other firms start reaching it. Dont think that just because Legal Cheek dont mention them theyre not top.

(3)(3)

Anonymous

Latham pay less than K&E and V&E.

Anonymous

Even worse then, whats all this hype on this website over LW and KE and virtually no mention of VE? Not lining Legal Cheek’s pockets with enough sponsorship money?

Anonymous

Cause despite the money, VE are nowhere near LW and KE in terms of the work it does.

If LW and KE are Chelsea and Man City, VE is some random Chinese team.

(4)(2)

Anonymous

I can hardly imagine a commercial lawyer whod complain about being in a “random Chinese team” paying 150k whack at NQ. Or are you after the social prestige and bragging rights of names like LW / KE? If so, you shouldve been a barrister.

Anonymous

They will not hit £200k. This would require the top US firms to raise their starting salaries to $250k in the States which simply will not happen any time soon.

In 10 years salaries have moved from $160k – $190k, it will take another 10 years for them to get anywhere near $250k.

(10)(1)

QMUL Law Student

What does this mean for my TC at Dorsey & Whitney? Will they be raising NQ rates to keep ahead?

(0)(1)

A&O

Are you having a laugh? Dorsey is a second rate law firm, not prestigious at all. You won’t see an increase in NQ salaries at all.

(11)(1)

QMUL Law Student

its a us firm everyone wants to go there these days so may as well start there

(1)(12)

mc trainee

I believe current Dorsey & Whitney NQ rate is £65,000.

(9)(2)

Anonymous

McTrainee?

I’ll have fries with that!

(7)(1)

Anonymous

Mate you could do so much better with a QMUL law degree. Are your grades good? Got extra curriculars and work experience? Can you write an application well? GTFO Dorsey shet, go for US/MC.

(1)(1)

QMUL Law Student

I got 73% overall in my second year so hopefully on track for a first and play for the university 2nds football

(5)(4)

Life Lessons

*Knock Knock* “Who’s there?” “Second place”. “Second place who?”

“Exactly”.

(3)(0)

Anonymous

Disagree

(0)(1)

Anonymous

Literally ask any employer at top firms if theyll consider a QM grad with the above listed and most will say yes. You dont need to be Oxbridge to get in.

(1)(2)

QM Grad - ex MC now in US firm

I second this. I’m a QM grad who trained and qualified at an MC firm and then moved onto a Whiteshoe US firm (one that pays c.GBP143k for NQs). I graduated with a 2;1, so you’re in much better shape (to gun for MC/US firms should you wish) than I was.

Anonymous

Wow!! You could get x2.5 of me with that salary! It makes me realise how poor my pay is – A LOT of civil service solicitors are currently in the middle of a mass exodus due to how poor our pay and lack of inflation rises. I do wonder how much these firms expect in return.

(3)(3)

Criminal Barrister

You would probably do 2.5x the hours to earn it though.

Money isn’t everything.

(7)(1)

Anonymous

Are they really all senile and swivel eyed over there as people say?

(0)(0)

Anonymous

Are people seriously considering Herbies to be a magic circle firm these days? LOL

(4)(13)

Anonymous

The number of people who say they worked at MC firms, and then when you ask them what firms, they mention this rubbish… Trolololing all the way home at their ignorance.

(4)(0)

Mike Hunt

If the people that comment on this site are at all representative of the people I will come across in the profession, I don’t think I’ll touch it with a 10 foot barge pole.
Honestly, I hope you all get hit by a bus.

(15)(5)

Anonymous

What in the world is ‘MoneyLaw’? Sounds like something my girlfriend Gillian would come up with… man I miss Gillian….

(3)(0)

Anonymous

What % of Hogan Lovell’s NQs actually enjoy the 30% “discretionary bonus”?

(0)(0)

Anonymous

0.001%.

(0)(0)

Comments are closed.

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