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Entry-Level Attorney Salary (United States)

Nearly all of Entry-Level Attorneys report less than five years' experience, making for a field full of relatively fresh workers who earn around $54K annually on average. While just under one in three report receiving no health benefits, most do receive medical coverage, and just over two-fifths have dental, as well. Men make up a slight majority of Entry-Level Attorneys (52 percent). Job satisfaction is reported as high by the vast majority of workers. This synopsis is derived from the responses of individuals who took PayScale's salary survey.
Entry-Level Attorney Salary (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$38,290 - $81,804
(Median)
38K
54K
65K
82K
MEDIAN: $53,949
10%
50%
75%
90%
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Entry-Level Attorney Salary (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$12.15 - $55.47
(Median)
12
20
34
55
MEDIAN: $20
10%
50%
75%
90%
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National Salary Data

 (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$31K$62K$93K
Salary
$38,290 - $81,804  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $10,154  
Profit Sharing
$1,487 - $10,084  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$35,844 - $91,073  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 3 Sep 2014 | Individuals Reporting: 664
National Hourly Rate Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$28$56$84
Hourly Rate
$12.15 - $55.47  
   
Overtime
$21.62 - $82.43  
National Annualized Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$60K$120K$180K
Bonus
$0.00 - $10,154  
   
Profit Sharing
$1,487 - $10,084  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$35,844 - $91,073  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 3 Sep 2014 | Individuals Reporting: 98
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Job Description for Entry-Level Attorney

Entry-level attorneys are normally employed in larger law firms for work that must be performed by persons with legal training. As the most inexperienced lawyers at a firm, entry-level attorneys may not be asked to present a casein a courtroom. Instead, they generally assist more senior legal personnel with casework, research, writing, and information collecting. They typically work with partners to ensure the firm’s clients receive the best possible legal representation.
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Entry-Level Attorney Tasks
  • Assist attorneys with gathering evidence to formulate defense or to initiate legal actions.
  • Evaluate findings and work with upper level attorneys to develop strategies and arguments for presentation of cases.
  • Analyze and interpret laws, rulings and regulations with probable case outcomes for individuals and businesses.

Common Career Paths for Entry-Level Attorney

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Compensation usually increases greatly for Entry-Level Attorneys who advance to upper-end positions like Attorney. Attorneys usually make $80K per year.

Entry-Level Attorney Job Listings

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Popular Skills for Entry-Level Attorney

Entry-Level Attorneys who responded to the survey indicated only a few skills that they use on the job. Those who have experience with Legal Research, Litigation Case Management, and Legal Document Review can expect to be compensated well for these skills. At the other end of the pay range are skills like Legal Document Review and Litigation Case Management. Those familiar with Legal Research also tend to know Legal Document Review.

Pay Difference By Location

Washington
up arrow 21%
New York
up arrow 18%
Philadelphia
up arrow 14%
Los Angeles
up arrow 12%
San Francisco
up arrow 11%
Chicago
up arrow 10%
Miami
up arrow 10%
Houston
up arrow 10%
National Average
$55,000
Larger circles over a city indicate a job is popular in that location.
Entry-Level Attorneys in search of higher pay head east. Washington, New York, and Philadelphia all offer salaries above the national rate.

Related Job Salaries

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Skills That Affect Entry-Level Attorney Salaries

Legal Research
up arrow 2%
National Average
$55,000
Litigation Case Management
up arrow 4%
Legal Document Review
up arrow 5%

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied Image
Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5 based on 102 votes.

Gender

Female
48%
female alumni
 
Male
52%
male alumni

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
44%
1-4 years
54%
5-9 years
2%
10-19 years
1%
20 years or more
0%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits Medical: 72% dental benefits Dental: 45%
vision benefits Vision: 33% employee benefits None: 28%