Staff Attorney Salary

Median pay for Staff Attorneys in the United States is around $66K annually. Cash earnings for Staff Attorneys — which occasionally include more than $11K from bonuses and more than $10K from profit sharing — stretch from around $46K to approximately $109K. Experience level is the biggest factor affecting pay for this group, followed by geography. Most report receiving medical coverage from their employers and a strong majority collect dental insurance. Work is enjoyable for Staff Attorneys, who typically claim high levels of job satisfaction. Men are slightly outnumbered by their female counterparts who answered the questionnaire, who make up a slight majority at 58 percent.

$45,919 - $103,067
(Median)
$46K
$66K
$100K
MEDIAN: $65,707
10%
50%
90%

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$19.96 - $63.87
(Median)
$20
$32
$64
MEDIAN: $32.00
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$50K$100K$150K
Salary
$45,919 - $103,067  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $10,584  
Profit Sharing
$-0.49 - $10,033  
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).
)
$45,819 - $108,574  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 12 Jan 2016 | Individuals Reporting: 809
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$25$50$75
Hourly Rate
$19.96 - $63.87  
   
Overtime
$15.00 - $73.73  
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$50K$100K$150K
Bonus
$0.00 - $10,584  
   
Profit Sharing
$-0.49 - $10,033  
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).
)
$45,819 - $108,574  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 12 Jan 2016 | Individuals Reporting: 59
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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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Though it's uncommon, some Staff Attorneys move into roles as Senior Counsels, where pay is an average $170K per year. Staff Attorneys typically move into roles as Attorneys or Senior Staff Attorneys, and those positions pay $14K more and $30K more, respectively.

Staff Attorney Job Listings

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Popular Skills for Staff Attorney


Staff Attorneys seem to require a number of specific skills. Most notably, skills in Contract Negotiation, Legal Compliance, Legal Document Review, and Litigation Case Management are correlated to pay that is above average. At the other end of the pay range are skills like Legal Writing. Most people who know Legal Document Review also know Litigation Case Management and Contract Negotiation.

Pay by Experience Level for Staff Attorney

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


Staff Attorneys with a lot of experience tend to enjoy higher earnings. Salaries for the relatively untried average out to around $60K, but survey participants with five to 10 years of experience earn a significantly higher median of $76K. Staff Attorneys see a median salary of $88K after reaching one to two decades on the job. Professionals who boast more than 20 years of experience reap the fruits of their labor to the six-figure tune of $101K — the plum median salary in this group.

Pay Difference by Location

National Average: $67,237

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

For Staff Attorneys, working in the bustling city of Chicago has its advantages, including an above-average pay rate. Staff Attorneys can also look forward to large paychecks in cities like San Diego (+20 percent), New York (+18 percent), Houston (+18 percent), and Seattle (+17 percent). The lowest-paying market is Philadelphia, which sits 25 percent below the national average, proving that location is a significant contributor to overall pay. Below-median salaries also turn up in Baltimore and San Francisco (13 percent lower and 6 percent lower, respectively).

Related Job Salaries

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Experience Affects Staff Attorney Salaries




National Average
$67,000


Skills That Affect Staff Attorney Salaries



Legal Document Review
up arrow 2%

National Average
$67,000

Legal Research
up arrow 3%

Litigation Case Management
up arrow 3%

Legal Writing
up arrow 13%

Job Satisfaction

Highly satisfied
Rated 4 out of 5
based on 124 votes.

Gender

Female
58 %
Male
42 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
6%
1-4 years
50%
5-9 years
24%
10-19 years
13%
20 years or more
7%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits
Medical: 90%
dental benefits
Dental: 74%
medical benefits
Vision: 59%
dental benefits
None: 9%
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