Clifford Chance restores NQ lawyer pay following COVID cut

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Exclusive: £100k package returns

Clifford Chance has restored salaries for its newly qualified (NQ) lawyers after opting to cut them earlier this summer in response to the coronavirus pandemic.

Legal Cheek can reveal that NQ pay packets have returned to £100,000, compromising salary and bonus. The magic circle player — which doesn’t report its NQ base rate — reduced total remuneration to £94,500 in June.

Trainee pay remained unaffected — £48,000 in year one, rising to £54,000 in year two.

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The money move comes just a month after fellow MC member Allen & Overy upped its NQ package to £95,000, made up of salary and sign-on bonus, after reducing it earlier this year to £90,000. It’s worth noting that this sizeable £95,000 sum falls short of the £100,000 pre-COVID package previously offered by the firm.

Meanwhile, Slaughter and May confirmed last week it is dishing out improved Christmas bonuses but sticking with its firm-wide pay freeze. The firm reduced the base rates of its NQs in May, from £92,000 to £87,000.

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