Lawyers’ salary increases at 4-year low

Lawyers’ salary increases at 4-year low

23 April 2018 By Emma Ryan
Salary increase

A new report shows a look into remuneration in the legal profession, revealing a four-year low in salary increases.

New research by the Australasian Legal Practice Management Association (ALPMA) surveyed 288 Aussie law firms to find out the current statistics on salaries and remuneration in the profession.


The report revealed that wages are continuing to flatline across the legal industry, with the average increase in salaries across the legal industry at 0.7 per cent, reaching a four-year low.

“Most Australian law firms are predicting modest wage increases at CPI, with 28 per cent expected to negotiate with employees above CPI and a further 17 per cent expect to increase salaries for all employees between 3 to 5 per cent,” said Dion Cusack, ALPMA president and corporate services manager at K&L Gates.


“While only 3 per cent of firms will freeze wages for all staff, 14 per cent expect to implement a limited freeze for some positions only.”

Despite the flat-line, the survey revealed that the legal employment market is growing.

Forty-two per cent of firms indicated that staff levels at their firm grew over the previous 12 months, and 53 per cent expect further employment growth at their firm over the next 12 months.

Seventy-six per cent of firms said they are likely to recruit lawyers in various positions in the coming 12 months, while nearly half of firms surveyed also expect to hire paralegals/law clerks and 42 per cent expect to hire support staff.

“These figures reflect national forecasts of growth in legal and professional services jobs over the next five years in Australia, with Victoria leading the way with 62 per cent of firms planning to increase staffing levels,” said Mr Cusack.

“Positively, recruitment intentions reflect expectations of firm growth (64 per cent), while 39 per cent is expected to replace departures.”

Lawyers’ salary increases at 4-year low
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