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Law Clerk Salary

For Law Clerks, hourly average wages total $15.02 per hour. Career length is the biggest factor affecting pay for this group, followed by geography. Job satisfaction is high and work is enjoyable for most Law Clerks. While some workers in this profession — close to one-half — do not have any health coverage, close to one-half do receive medical benefits and over a third have dental insurance. Women Law Clerks who took the survey just slightly outnumber men. The figures in this rundown are based on the results of PayScale's salary questionnaire.
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$25,646 - $75,022
(Median)
$26K
$42K
$75K
MEDIAN: $41,789
10%
50%
90%

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$10.02 - $22.27
(Median)
$10
$15
$22
MEDIAN: $15.00
10%
50%
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$26K$52K$78K
Salary
$25,646 - $75,022  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $2,075  
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).
)
$21,325 - $61,046  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 2 May 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 255
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$12$24$36
Hourly Rate
$10.02 - $22.27  
   
Overtime
$11.63 - $34.23  
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$24K$48K$72K
Bonus
$0.00 - $2,075  
   
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).
)
$21,325 - $61,046  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 2 May 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 450

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Job Description for Law Clerk

A law clerk's primary function is to perform research pertaining to legal issues. They may work for a judge or a private attorney. Law clerks provide necessary assistance to those in professional law positions who cannot do all of the research and paperwork themselves. They may also assist a judge in making legal decisions.

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Law Clerk Tasks

  • 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.
  • Review and file pleadings, petitions and other documents relevant to court actions.
  • 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.

Common Career Paths for Law Clerk


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While not commonly seen, Law Clerks who transition into a General Counsel position may see a rise in pay. The median salary for General Counsels is $149K per year. Law Clerks typically move into roles as Attorneys or Associate Attorneys, and those positions pay $46K more and $37K more, respectively.

Law Clerk Job Listings

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Popular Skills for Law Clerk


Survey results suggest that Law Clerks use a fairly large toolkit of professional skills. Most notably, skills in Legal Writing, Legal Research, Legal Document Review, and Technical Writing are correlated to pay that is above average. Skills that are correlated to lower pay, on the other hand, include Client Interaction and Filing Court Documents. For most people, competency in Legal Research indicates knowledge of Legal Document Review.

Pay by Experience Level for Law Clerk

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


Law Clerks who reported more years of relevant experience also reported higher earnings. Salaries for inexperienced workers average out to $39K, and those with five to 10 years' experience earn a higher median of $33K. Law Clerks see a median salary of $39K after reaching one to two decades on the job. Seasoned workers who boast more than two decades of relevant experience enjoy a median salary of $61K, which is substantially larger than the medians reported by folks with fewer years on their resumes.

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United States (change)

Experience Affects Law Clerk Salaries

Late-Career
up arrow 77%



National Average
$34,000


Skills That Affect Law Clerk Salaries

Legal Writing
up arrow 12%


Legal Document Review
up arrow 3%

Technical Writing
up arrow 2%

Document Preparation
up arrow 2%

National Average
$34,000

Filing Court Documents
up arrow 9%

Client Interaction
up arrow 11%

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 129 votes.

Gender

Female
58 %
Male
42 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
16%
1-4 years
64%
5-9 years
12%
10-19 years
6%
20 years or more
2%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits Medical: 49% dental benefits Dental: 36%
vision benefits Vision: 28% employee benefits None: 50%
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