Law Clerk Salary

Law Clerks in the United States can expect to earn an average of $15.13 per hour. Geography and career length each impact pay for this group, with the former having the largest influence. Women are just slightly outnumbered, with male Law Clerks making up 52 percent of survey respondents. The greater part of professionals in this line of work do not receive benefits; however, more than two-fifths report medical coverage and slightly less than a third claim dental coverage as well. The majority of Law Clerks claim high levels of job satisfaction. The data for this synopsis comes from respondents who took the PayScale salary survey.
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$28,807 - $77,852
$29K
$43K
$78K
MEDIAN: $43,239
10%
50%
90%

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$10.94 - $20.78
$11
$15
$21
MEDIAN: $15.13
10%
50%
90%

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National Salary Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$26K$52K$78K
Salary
$28,807 - $77,852  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $3,959  
Profit Sharing
$4,250  
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).
)
$24,260 - $57,456  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 25 Mar 2017 | Individuals Reporting: 156
© PayScale, Inc. @ www.payscale.com
National Hourly Rate Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$13$26$39
Hourly Rate
$10.94 - $20.78  
   
Overtime
$16.79 - $37.28  
National Annualized Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$26K$52K$78K
Bonus
$0.00 - $3,959  
   
Profit Sharing
$4,250  
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).
)
$24,260 - $57,456  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 25 Mar 2017 | Individuals Reporting: 327
© PayScale, Inc. @ www.payscale.com

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United States (change)

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Job Description for Law Clerk

A law clerk's primary function is to perform research for a judge pertaining to legal issues before their court; they may work at the federal, state or municipal levels. Specific tasks performed by law clerks include drafting memoranda and opinions, preparing files for hearings and providing other support to judges as hearings are underway. They also review briefs to ensure they are accurate, as well as provide advice to the judge and others on their team related to cases.

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Law Clerk Tasks

  • Search for and study legal documents to investigate facts and law of cases.
  • Deliver or direct delivery of subpoenas to witnesses and parties to action, serve copies of pleas to opposing counsel.
  • Review and file pleadings, petitions and other documents relevant to court actions.
  • Research and analyze law sources to prepare drafts of briefs or arguments for review, approval and use by attorney.
  • Prepare affidavits of documents and maintain document files and case correspondence.

Common Career Paths for Law Clerk


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Law Clerks do not often transition into General Counsel roles. The role averages $153K per year. When Law Clerks are ready for the next step in their careers, they often become Attorneys or Associate Attorneys. Those roles pay an additional $47K and $38K, respectively.

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Popular Skills for Law Clerk


Law Clerks report using a pretty varied skill set on the job. Most notably, facility with Legal Writing and Technical Writing are correlated to pay that is significantly above average, leading to increases of 34 percent and 4 percent, respectively. Skills that are correlated to lower pay, on the other hand, include Filing Court Documents, Client Interaction, and Document Preparation. Most people familiar with Legal Document Review also know Technical Writing.

Pay by Experience Level for Law Clerk

Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.


For many Law Clerks, extensive experience does not lead to significantly more money. Workers in their first five years can expect to earn $33K, but people who have been around for five to 10 years earn a noticeably bigger sum of $41K. Law Clerks bring in $43K after working for 10 to 20 years. Ultimately, more time spent in the workforce does seem to translate to bigger paychecks; seasoned veterans with more than 20 years of experience report a median income of $46K.

Pay Difference by Location

National Average: $34,278

Larger city markers indicate a job is popular in that location.

Surpassing the national average by 44 percent, Law Clerks in Washington receive some of the highest pay in the country. Law Clerks will also find cushy salaries in Seattle (+36 percent), New York (+23 percent), San Francisco (+22 percent), and Newport Beach (+22 percent). With compensation 15 percent below the national average, Tampa is not known for hefty paychecks and actually represents the lowest-paying market. Employers also pay below the national average in Dallas (12 percent lower) and Fort Lauderdale (9 percent lower).

Related Job Salaries

Key Stats for Law Clerk

Gender

Female
48 %
Male
52 %

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 39 votes.
Less than 1 year
17%
1-4 years
62%
5-9 years
11%
10-19 years
7%
20 years or more
3%
Location:
Years in Fields/Career:
United States (change)

Experience Affects Law Clerk Salaries

Late-Career
▲34%

▲24%

▲20%

National Average
$34,000

▼4%

Skills That Affect Law Clerk Salaries

Legal Writing
▲34%




National Average
$34,000

Document Preparation
▼7%

Client Interaction
▼8%

Filing Court Documents
▼18%

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 39 votes.

Gender

Female
48 %
Male
52 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
17%
1-4 years
62%
5-9 years
11%
10-19 years
7%
20 years or more
3%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits
Medical: 42%
dental benefits
Dental: 28%
vision benefits
Vision: 21%
dental benefits
None: 56%
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