Legal Secretary Salary

The majority of Legal Secretaries in the United States — just under two-thirds — boast more than 10 years of experience in their profession. Salaries stretch from $26K to $72K per year, and the median is $50K annually. In the world of Legal Secretaries, overall cash allowance can occasionally include more than $3K from bonuses and, in some exceptional cases, $7K from profit sharing, causing incomes to vary widely between $26K and $72K. While geography and years of experience impact pay for this group, the specific employer is the most influential factor. Health benefits are not claimed by all — just under one in three lack any form of coverage — but more than half have medical insurance, and close to one-half have dental, too. Most Legal Secretaries report high levels of job satisfaction. The figures in this overview were provided by individuals who took PayScale's salary questionnaire.

$30,531 - $72,444
(Median)
$31K
$50K
$72K
MEDIAN: $49,599
10%
50%
90%

Add this chart to your site: 640px    300px

$10.69 - $28.89
(Median)
$11
$17
$29
MEDIAN: $16.00
10%
50%
90%

Add this chart to your site: 640px    300px

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$25K$50K$75K
Salary
$30,531 - $72,444  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $3,092  
Profit Sharing
$796 - $6,981  
Commission
$0.00 - $0.00  
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).
)
$26,456 - $71,806  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 2 Jul 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 5,674
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$18$36$54
Hourly Rate
$10.69 - $28.89  
   
Hourly Tips
$0.00 - $0.38  
Overtime
$14.77 - $53.76  
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$50K$100K$150K
Bonus
$0.00 - $3,092  
   
Commission
$0.00 - $0.00  
Profit Sharing
$796 - $6,981  
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).
)
$26,456 - $71,806  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 2 Jul 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 2,988
United States (change)

Find Out Exactly What You Should Be Paid

United States (change)


Comp Managers: Start Here »

Job Description for Legal Secretary

A legal secretary works to assist the attorneys and paralegals of the law firm and has a number of different responsibilities largely dependent on the daily needs of the firm. The secretary may be asked to prepare and process legal documents such as summonses, complaints, subpoenas, appeals, affidavits, motions, and pretrial agreements. The employee will take care of mailing, faxing, or arranging for alternate delivery of correspondence to clients, witnesses, and court officials. A legal secretary schedules appointments, answers the main line for the firm, makes copies, and drafts office memos. The secretary will organize and maintain the firm's law libraries, documents, and case files as well as assist attorneys in collecting employment, medical, and other records related to cases. Taking notes at legal meetings, client interviews, and hearings or depositions will be required. A legal secretary will also spend time reviewing legal publications and searching databases to identify laws and court decisions relevant to the firm's cases. A professional demeanor is required in dealing with the firm’s attorneys and clients, and good grammar and spelling are expected in any written correspondence whether it is emailed, faxed, or sent through the postal service. Office hours vary based on the caseload and schedule for the firm, but often exceed forty hours per week. A legal secretary must be able to efficiently use standard office equipment such as computers, printers, copiers, scanners, fax machines, telephones, and calculators. A legal background is required, whether through a degree in a related field or by previous experience working for a law firm.


Legal Secretary Tasks

  • Organize and maintain law libraries, documents and case files.
  • Schedule appointments, answer phones, make photocopies, draft and type office memos.
  • Mail, fax, or arrange for delivery of legal correspondence to clients, witnesses and court officials.
  • Assist attorneys in collecting employment, medical and other records.
  • Prepare and process legal documents and papers; summonses, subpoenas, complaints, appeals, motions and pretrial agreements.

Common Career Paths for Legal Secretary


Add this chart to your site:   640px 640px    300px 300px


As Legal Secretaries transition into upper-level roles such as Attorney, they may see a strong upturn in salary. Attorneys earn $81K on average per year. Many Legal Secretaries advance into roles as Legal Assistants or Paralegals, but the median salaries are $9K lower and $4K lower, respectively.

Legal Secretary Job Listings

Search for more jobs:

Popular Employer Salaries for Legal Secretary


Known for taking on a considerable number of Legal Secretaries, Kirkland & Ellis Llp, Greenbergs Traurig Llp, Mayer, Brown & Platt, Morgan Lewis & Bockius Llp, and Geico are leading firms in the industry. Legal Secretaries seeking a sizable paycheck can earn the most at Cooley Godward Kronish Llp, where the median salary comes to $84K, though the large pay difference between employees at the top ($55K) and those starting out ($106K) creates a rather diverse pay scale. Legal Secretaries will also find cushy salaries at Gibson Dunn and Crutcher (+$81K), Sidley & Austin Llp (+$78K), and Mayer, Brown & Platt (+$77K).

Employees at Geico, Buchanan Ingersoll PC, and K&L Gates LLP can also expect below-average earnings of $37K, $48K, and $54K.

Popular Skills for Legal Secretary


Survey results imply that Legal Secretaries deploy a substantial tool kit of skills at work. Most notably, skills in Litigation Case Management, Word Processing, Proofreading, and Microsoft Word are correlated to pay that is above average, with boosts between 6 percent and 12 percent. Skills that are correlated to lower pay, on the other hand, include Client Interaction, Filing, and Typing. Those familiar with Document Preparation also tend to know Drafting Correspondence and Client Interaction.

Pay by Experience Level for Legal Secretary

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


Experience seems to be a major factor in determining the incomes of Legal Secretaries. Salaries of relatively inexperienced workers fall in the neighborhood of $32K, but folks who have racked up five to 10 years see a notably higher median of $41K. The average pay reported by folks with 10 to 20 years of experience is around $49K. Individuals who have achieved more than 20 years of experience don't seem to earn much more than people who have 10 to 20 years under their belts; the more senior group reports an average income of $56K.

Pay Difference by Location


For Legal Secretaries, busy San Francisco offers a higher-than-average pay rate, 62 percent above the national average. Legal Secretaries can also look forward to large paychecks in cities like Washington (+54 percent), New York (+46 percent), Los Angeles (+41 percent), and Boston (+39 percent).

Legal Secretary Reviews

What is it like working as a Legal Secretary?

Legal Secretary in Nanuet:
"Searching for a rewarding, exciting and challenging career."
Pros: I work independently, my boss does not bother me. I work at my own pace and everyone mainly works on there own.
Cons: I would like to do and learn more about law. My job does not reward me nor do I have any benefits nor room for growth.

Legal Secretary in Muncie:
"100%"
Pros: I love the job that I do and the person I work for. I leave every day feeling as though I have truly accomplished a lot. We help people on a daily basis and that makes it easy to love my job.
Cons: I have no complaints about my current position.

Related Job Salaries

United States (change)

Find Out Exactly What You Should Be Paid

United States (change)


Comp Managers: Start Here »

Experience Affects Legal Secretary Salaries



National Average
$45,000



Skills That Affect Legal Secretary Salaries






Microsoft Office
up arrow 4%

Filing Court Documents
up arrow 3%

Transcription
up arrow 3%

National Average
$45,000

Document Preparation
up arrow 1%

Drafting Correspondence
up arrow 1%

Scheduling
up arrow 2%

Organizing
up arrow 2%

Typing
up arrow 4%

up arrow 8%


Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 1610 votes.

Gender

Female
98 %
Male
2 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
3%
1-4 years
19%
5-9 years
15%
10-19 years
27%
20 years or more
36%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits Medical: 69% dental benefits Dental: 49%
vision benefits Vision: 36% employee benefits None: 29%
ADVERTISEMENT