Staff Attorney Salary

Average Staff Attorneys in the United States make around $66K per year. In the world of Staff Attorneys, overall cash allowance can occasionally include more than $10K from bonuses and, in some exceptional cases, $10K from profit sharing, causing incomes to vary widely between $46K and $107K. Career length and the particular city each impact pay for this group, with the former having the largest influence. Most workers in this position report high levels of job satisfaction. Women make up a slight majority of Staff Attorneys (57 percent) survey respondents. Medical benefits are awarded to a large number, and a fair number earn dental coverage.

$45,752 - $101,945
(Median)
$46K
$66K
$100K
MEDIAN: $65,589
10%
50%
90%

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$20.01 - $66.44
(Median)
$20
$32
$66
MEDIAN: $32.00
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$50K$100K$150K
Salary
$45,752 - $101,945  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $10,156  
Profit Sharing
$-0.49 - $9,635  
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).
)
$45,629 - $107,094  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 31 Mar 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 692
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
$20.01 - $66.44  
   
Overtime
$14.79 - $83.63  
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 - $10,156  
   
Profit Sharing
$-0.49 - $9,635  
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).
)
$45,629 - $107,094  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 31 Mar 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 56

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Job Description for Staff Attorney

Staff attorneys are legal employees who work for a variety of organizations, often as full-time employees. Staff attorneys use their legal expertise to help deal with the day-to-day legal issues with which their organization needs regular assistance. The daily duties of a staff attorney might include advising their employer on legal matters, performing pre-litigation analysis, conducting research as it pertains to legal matters within their organization, and carrying out legal proceedings. Staff attorneys usually work in an office within their company's legal department, where they look over paperwork, prepare analysis, and carry out other jobs required by their supervisors. Their supervisors might include senior staff attorneys and/or the head of the legal department. This is typically a full-time position, although overtime may be required as tasks require. In all tasks, staff attorneys must follow relevant privacy regulations.

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Staff Attorney Tasks

  • Gather evidence to formulate defense or to initiate legal actions; evaluate findings and develop strategies and arguments for presentation of cases.
  • Analyze and interpret laws, rulings and regulations with probable case outcomes for individuals and businesses.
  • Represent clients in court or before government agencies, present and summarize cases to judges and juries.
  • Advise clients in business transactions, claim liablility, advisability of prosecuting or defending lawsuits or legal rights and obligations.
  • Select jurors, argue motions, meet with judges and question witnesses during the course of a trial.

Common Career Paths for Staff Attorney


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Staff Attorneys do not often transition into General Counsel roles. The role averages $149K per year. Staff Attorneys most often move into positions as Attorneys or Senior Staff Attorneys; those groups report median salaries that are $13K higher and $31K higher, respectively.

Staff Attorney Job Listings

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Popular Skills for Staff Attorney


Staff Attorneys report using a wide range of professional skills. Most notably, skills in Contract Negotiation, Legal Compliance, Legal Document Review, and Litigation Case Management are correlated to pay that is above average. The majority of those who know Legal Research also know Litigation Case Management and Contract Negotiation. The majority of those who know Legal Document Review also know Contract Negotiation and Litigation Case Management.

Pay by Experience Level for Staff Attorney

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


Staff Attorneys generally obtain higher compensation for more plentiful past experience. The average worker who claims fewer than five years of experience earns around $60K. In contrast, however, individuals who report five to 10 years in this occupation see a much larger median of $73K. Staff Attorneys claiming one to two decades of experience make an estimated median of $86K. Staff Attorneys who have acquired more than 20 years of relevant experience earn significantly more than folks with fewer years on their resumes; the average income in this veteran group is $101K.

Pay Difference by Location


Surpassing the national average by 21 percent, Staff Attorneys in San Diego receive some of the highest pay in the country. Staff Attorneys will also find cushy salaries in Chicago (+21 percent), Houston (+15 percent), Seattle (+12 percent), and Boston (+6 percent). The lowest-paying market is Philadelphia, which sits 18 percent below the national average. Employers also pay below the national average in Baltimore (17 percent lower) and Los Angeles (11 percent lower).

Related Job Salaries

United States (change)

Experience Affects Staff Attorney Salaries




National Average
$67,000


Skills That Affect Staff Attorney Salaries



Legal Document Review
up arrow 2%

Litigation Case Management
up arrow 2%

National Average
$67,000

Legal Research
up arrow 3%

Job Satisfaction

Highly satisfied
Rated 4 out of 5
based on 132 votes.

Gender

Female
57 %
Male
43 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
6%
1-4 years
48%
5-9 years
25%
10-19 years
14%
20 years or more
6%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits Medical: 89% dental benefits Dental: 73%
vision benefits Vision: 58% employee benefits None: 10%