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Lawyer Salary


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Lawyer Salary

Lawyer Salary By Percentile
Percentile 10% 25% 50% 75% 90%
Hourly Wage $26.11 $36.00 $54.58 $80.77 $90.00+
Annual Wage $54,300 $74,900 $113,500 $168,000 $187,200+

How much does a lawyer make? Lawyers are professionals who represent clients in legal matters. In addition to handling criminal and civil cases and advising clients, a substantial part of a lawyer's job involves researching legal issues and filing documents on behalf of clients. There are many areas in which a prospective lawyer can choose to specialize such as environmental law, tax law, and family law. To become a lawyer, it will require about 7 years of schooling, and then additional time is spent in preparation to take the bar exam which must be passed in order to practice law. A breakdown of the full process of becoming a Lawyer can be found here.

Salary

According to The Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median salary of a lawyer in 2012 was $113,530. The top 10 percent of lawyers earn $187,200 or more. The lowest 10 percent of lawyers made $54,310 or less.

Variables Impacting Salary

Those lawyers who are employed with large law firms, usually command a higher salary than those who have their own private practice. In addition, lawyers who are employed in the public sector will make less money than those in the private sector. Years of experience can also be a factor in the amount lawyers earn, since experienced lawyers generally earn a higher salary than those who are just starting out in their careers. Law students who graduate with excellent grades and are at the top of their class will also have more opportunities for employment and the potential to command a higher salary than other graduates.

Another factor influencing salary is geographic location. Law firms located in larger cities will almost always offer employees higher salaries than firms located in smaller cities or less populated areas.

Schedule and Work Environment

Most lawyers work long hours, and many lawyers have schedules that well exceed 40 hours a week. Lawyers usually work in offices, but they often need to travel to meet with clients and appear at hearings.

Job Outlook

The job outlook for lawyers is average. Job opportunities for lawyers are projected to grow by 10% until 2022. In 2012, there were 759,800 jobs for lawyers, and by 2022, there will be an additional 74,800 jobs added to the field. Law is a competitive field, since there are a large number of law school graduates entering the work force each year.

Top Paying Industries

Industry Employment % of industry employment Hourly mean wage Annual mean salary
Offices of Physicians - - $112.99 $235,020
Resin, Synthetic Rubber, and Artificial Synthetic Fibers and Filaments Manufacturing - - $97.12 $202,010
Securities and Commodity Contracts Intermediation and Brokerage 1,360 0.31 $95.67 $198,990
Other Information Services 780 0.41 $95.63 $198,910
Petroleum and Coal Products Manufacturing 90 0.08 $94.64 $196,850

Salary By State

State 10% 25% Median 75% 90% Jobs (2010) Jobs (2020) Outlook
Alabama $46,600 $65,200 $95,500 $141,000 $187,200+ 7,350 8,390 +14%
Alaska $69,700 $85,100 $108,500 $136,700 $187,200+ 990 1,050 +6%
Arizona $59,200 $75,700 $102,400 $147,600 $187,200+ 11,640 13,910 +20%
Arkansas $37,200 $51,500 $74,500 $117,600 $173,200 4,550 5,030 +11%
California $73,900 $99,900 $138,600 $187,200+ $187,200+ 86,700 95,100 +10%
Colorado $56,000 $73,900 $115,200 $166,700 $187,200+ 14,160 14,900 +5%
Connecticut $64,000 $89,100 $121,500 $185,300 $187,200+ 9,210 9,400 +2%
Delaware $78,000 $100,700 $150,800 $185,000 $187,200+ 3,040 3,060 +1%
District of Columbia $92,000 $124,100 $155,500 $187,200+ $187,200+ 41,670 48,040 +15%
Florida $44,600 $63,700 $98,900 $156,000 $187,200+ 54,090 63,380 +17%
Georgia $44,100 $69,600 $120,600 $187,100 $187,200+ 18,300 21,730 +19%
Hawaii $60,600 $72,500 $92,700 $130,500 $187,200+ 2,260 2,400 +6%
Idaho $45,400 $60,800 $82,200 $127,500 $179,200 2,620 2,810 +7%
Illinois $55,700 $80,800 $128,600 $179,500 $187,200+ 32,870 36,330 +11%
Iowa $45,400 $62,500 $88,200 $122,800 $187,200+ 4,470 4,950 +11%
Kansas $46,600 $59,100 $86,200 $128,600 $185,800 5,060 5,530 +9%
Kentucky $41,800 $52,300 $72,000 $110,100 $160,900 6,860 7,460 +9%
Louisiana $47,900 $64,000 $93,100 $137,100 $187,200+ 9,300 10,250 +10%
Maine $47,400 $58,300 $83,600 $124,700 $177,100 2,810 3,010 +7%
Maryland $57,600 $74,500 $101,300 $151,200 $187,200+ 13,990 15,350 +10%
Massachusetts $60,100 $74,200 $114,800 $174,500 $187,200+ 21,110 24,090 +14%
Michigan $48,300 $67,800 $97,900 $145,400 $187,200+ 14,790 15,180 +3%
Minnesota $53,400 $76,500 $107,600 $152,500 $187,200+ 12,060 12,940 +7%
Mississippi $33,200 $47,700 $77,900 $123,900 $187,200+ 3,770 4,110 +9%
Missouri $45,800 $64,900 $97,100 $140,500 $187,200+ 12,430 14,440 +16%
Montana $35,500 $44,800 $64,900 $86,100 $126,300 2,550 2,720 +7%
Nebraska $44,000 $59,500 $82,000 $117,600 $175,400 3,250 3,370 +3%
Nevada $56,300 $79,600 $106,000 $149,500 $187,200+ 5,430 5,710 +5%
New Hampshire $55,600 $68,400 $90,800 $125,000 $183,800 2,440 2,570 +5%
New Jersey $60,400 $76,200 $111,600 $162,200 $187,200+ 26,170 28,690 +10%
New Mexico $53,000 $64,300 $85,900 $118,300 $153,200 3,020 3,120 +3%
New York $65,200 $86,500 $132,200 $187,200+ $187,200+ 66,700 70,080 +5%
North Carolina $47,200 $60,400 $92,900 $145,600 $187,200+ 13,650 15,630 +15%
North Dakota $43,900 $58,600 $74,100 $102,900 $152,600 1,320 1,450 +10%
Ohio $48,800 $66,700 $94,500 $139,700 $187,200+ 20,200 21,820 +8%
Oklahoma $41,800 $53,200 $81,100 $118,600 $187,200+ 8,870 9,880 +12%
Oregon $55,300 $70,400 $93,300 $127,000 $175,300 5,050 5,800 0%
Pennsylvania $57,400 $74,300 $113,900 $170,400 $187,200+ 27,950 30,070 +8%
Rhode Island $47,500 $57,200 $82,200 $117,700 $151,600 2,400 2,520 +5%
South Carolina $45,100 $60,800 $87,200 $134,400 $187,200+ 6,700 7,370 +10%
South Dakota $52,400 $62,400 $77,900 $94,000 $156,000 1,520 1,610 +6%
Tennessee $49,800 $65,900 $91,100 $133,000 $187,200+ - - -
Texas $54,000 $74,900 $113,600 $169,100 $187,200+ 44,330 52,220 +18%
Utah $54,100 $71,300 $101,200 $142,600 $187,200+ 5,400 6,460 +20%
Vermont $42,900 $52,100 $73,700 $115,000 $150,100 2,000 2,110 +6%
Virginia $59,700 $78,000 $115,700 $163,000 $187,200+ 19,390 23,280 +20%
Washington $61,700 $72,600 $100,100 $143,700 $187,200+ 14,230 16,000 +13%
West Virginia $31,000 $51,600 $74,700 $111,300 $170,400 3,060 3,260 +6%
Wisconsin $45,000 $58,200 $89,500 $134,200 $187,200+ 9,710 10,400 +7%
Wyoming $38,900 $59,100 $78,400 $106,200 $167,100 760 860 +14%


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