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Legal Business Leaders Release Law Firm Compensation Benefits Research Data

  • Aug 10

Legal Practice Mangers’ average pay rose 18% in 2014

CHICAGO, ILLINOIS — The latest industry-leading research findings on compensation and benefits trends in law firms was released today by the Association of Legal Administrators (ALA). The Enhanced Law Firm Compensation & Benefits Survey data shows that practice area administrator salaries increased by an average of 18% in 2014, with principal law firm administrators faring nearly as well with a 15.3% increase, and Paralegal Mangers a 12.6% increase.

The 1,169 participants in the survey receive a discount on the final data, which include enhanced features such as staffing ratios and billable hours, and also allows participants to electronically benchmark their own firms’ response data against the marketplace. The survey data and an executive summary is available to both participants and non-participants at:

The reports provide comparative salary and benefits by country, city, region and ZIP code. Foreseeing trends in new responsibilities and positions in firms, ALA also added ten new management positions and 15 staff-level positions in 2014, as well as paid leave benefits and turnover rates. ALA’s Large Firm Key Staff Compensation Survey provides a deep dive into C-level compensation at firms with more than 100 lawyers. 27% of respondents are firms with more than 400 lawyers.

More than half (56%) of the U.S. locations that offered a medical plan for employees cover 75-99% of premiums, and about one in five cover the entire premium. One-third of the U.S. locations indicated they do not pay any part of the premium for their employees, while one-fifth of locations pay the entire premium for their employees. The majority of U.S. locations that offer short-term disability, long-term disability, life insurance and accidental death and dismemberment cover the entire premiums.

The web-based questionnaires were designed jointly by ALA and iLumen Inc., based on similar surveys conducted in previous years. Survey programming and data collection were handled by iLumen. To avoid compromising respondent confidentiality, results were not reported for items that had fewer than four valid responses (fewer than three for the Large Firm Survey, due to the relatively small data set).  Of 1,169 respondents, private law firms accounted for 95% of the total population.

For an Executive Summary of the research, and to purchase the full reports, which include a breakdown of benefits offered by organization type, firm size and region visit or call 847-267-1252.

About the ALA Enhanced Legal Compensation and Benefits Survey

Conducted annually for more than 25 years, the Enhanced 2014 Legal Compensation and Benefit Surveys included 1,169 responses from law firms and law departments reporting on 48 positions in 25 metropolitan areas.  Data includes annual base salary and total benefit and compensation data for non-lawyer positions, including wage and bonus information. Participants can easily benchmark against the marketplace and create custom reports and dashboards, using their firm data with highly customized reporting capabilities. Download the Executive Summary or purchase the full reports at:

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