City Attorney Salary
City Attorneys in the United States can expect wages of $83K per year on average. Something to celebrate is that most people in this position are highly satisfied with their jobs. Making up 75 percent of those who took the survey, male City Attorneys greatly outnumber their female counterparts. This report is based on answers to PayScale's salary questionnaire.
Job Description for City Attorney
City attorneys represent their city or municipality in legal matters. They may be elected or appointed; depending on the size of the city or municipality they represent, they may be full-time public employees or lawyers in private practice on contract to represent the city as needed. Tasks performed by the city attorney may include reviewing contracts or agreements under consideration, handling lawsuits brought against the city and providing legal guidance to the city and its leaders as needed. They may also prosecute minor crimes depending on their city or municipality's needs.Read More...
Aspiring city attorneys should earn a doctoral degree in the law, as well as have substantial legal experience. They also need to be licensed to practice law in their city or municipality.
City attorneys must have an excellent understanding of current laws, the legal system and their municipality or city. They often offer their city or municipality legal advice on a wide range of issues - such as open records, human resources and contracts, among others - and so they must be knowledgeable about relevant laws and able to conduct the legal research necessary to provide accurate, useful advice to their client.
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Pay by Experience Level for City Attorney
Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.
In general, experience and pay appear to be strongly linked; those with more experience usually bring in higher incomes. Relatively untried employees who have fewer than five years of experience earn around $65K on average. People who have worked for five to 10 years can expect a higher median salary of $85K. Six-figure salaries surface after one to two decades on the job — experienced professionals in this group reap a six-figure median of $117K. People who have worked for more than 20 years report a median income of $130K, which is barely higher than the median for folks with 10 to 20 years of experience.