A&O restarts lawyer salary reviews and increases pay

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NQs receive pay rise which falls £5k short of pre-COVID six-figure sum

Allen & Overy’s London office

Allen & Overy has restarted lawyer salary reviews and increased levels of pay.

The magic circle firm introduced a firm-wide pay freeze and put annual salary reviews for lawyers and support staff on hold in the first quarter of the financial year when coronavirus hit.

“Following a recent review, we have taken the decision to increase lawyer salaries to align to the market as appropriate to their band or relevant discretionary increase for their role,” a spokesperson from the firm said. The increases will be reflected in their December pay, backdated to November.

This includes its newly qualified (NQ) solicitors, which, as Legal Cheek reported in June, received a 10% cut in pay from a minimum of £100,000, comprised of salary and sign-on bonus, to £90,000, in response to the coronavirus pandemic. However, the pay rise falls £5,000 short of the six-figure pre-COVID sum. The spokesperson confirmed to Legal Cheek that their total compensation package now stands at £95,000.

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The firm’s second year trainee solicitors, who had been held on year one pay, have now had their salaries reinstated, the spokesperson added.

The salaries of A&O business services and support staff, however, remain frozen.

A spate of City law firms cut solicitor salaries to curb the financial uncertainty brought about by the coronavirus pandemic. Some, including most recently, Hogan Lovells, have since restored NQ lawyer pay to their pre-COVID levels.

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