CMS raises NQ solicitor pay to £73,000 plus bonus in package worth up to £87,600

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By Aishah Hussain on

A rise of 4%

CMS has confirmed its newly qualified (NQ) talent will be 4% better off.

Those qualifying into the global giant’s London office were previously remunerated a base rate of £70,000. Their salaries have now grown to £73,000, with bonuses of up to 20% (£14,600) based on performance and “contribution to the firm”. This means newbie associates can receive a total pay package worth up to £87,600 with bonuses applied.

Legal Cheek’s Firms Most List shows NQs at CMS now out earn their peers at a plethora of London-headquartered outfits including Addleshaw Goddard, Mishcon de Reya and Osborne Clarke — all of whom award junior lawyers £70,000. CMS’ lot draw level with those at Squire Patton Boggs (£73,000).

The 2019 Legal Cheek Firms Most List

The firm confirmed regional pay remains unchanged. Bristol and Sheffield NQs are paid £50,000 and £41,000 respectively, while those in Scotland earn £40,000. CMS — which offers 65 training spots each year — remunerates its London-based trainee solicitors £43,000 in their first year rising to £48,000 in their second year.

CMS became the sixth largest firm in the UK by revenue and the sixth largest in the world by lawyer headcount in 2017 thanks to a three-way tie-up between CMS Cameron McKenna, Nabarro and Olswang.

In November 2016 we revealed CMS trainees-to-be had been offered sizeable sums of money if they agreed to defer their training contract start dates to February 2018. It is understood this was an attempt to accommodate the intakes of two additional firms. In April 2017 CMS confirmed 25 of its 46 would-be trainees had taken up the voluntary deal, equating to a pay out of £250,000.

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