November 17, 2011
Whilst CapeClarke commented on the decline of training contracts a few months ago, it is interesting to note the recent press release from the Office for National Statistics.
Solicitors working in private practice law firms are now paid 6.4% more than they were in 2007. You may say that the rise is not outstanding – it certainly is not – but given the recession and the measures law firms have had to take during difficult times, we still feel it is a statistic, when seen in black and white, is a startling one. The general perception is that solicitors have had to take drops in pay (certainly new NQ solicitors) or at least had their pay frozen. This news perhaps shows that many firms have coped better than the general market thinks they have.
Another figure disclosed by the press release is that there has been a 10.3% rise in the number of legal professionals in full time employment since 2007. This is, perhaps, less of a surprise given that it would seem to include trainees who have now qualified and may offset the decline caused by any redundancies in law firms.
Whether you view the statistics as being reasonably expected, we still feel that they must be viewed with positivity. More solicitors working with an, albeit slight, rise in average nominal pay is a hopeful sign that law firms have reacted well to the financial crisis and can look more optimistically to the future.
Should you wish to discuss this article or, indeed, want to discuss your career options, please feel free to contact Terry Cape or Chris Clarke on 0113 2385965.