In-house lawyer salaries and bonuses are on the rise across the country, according to research commissioned by BCL Legal. While in-house lawyers in London have been reportedly gaining increased compensation and bonuses in the last few years, reports about the health of in-house law outside of the capital are less frequent. Yet the increasing importance of in-house lawyers is to be found in most places, and increases in salaries and bonuses broadly reflect this.
In Yorkshire and the North East have seen the biggest increase in remuneration, with 73% of respondents to the research reporting pay rises, while 68% of lawyers in the Midlands and the North West have stated they have received greater salaries over the last year. In-house lawyers with six to 10-12 PQE in particular are receiving greater dividends of their companies acknowledgment of the importance of their roles. In the North West, for example, salaries for this PQE bracket ranged from £72,500 to £115,000.
More recently qualified in-house lawyers do not have it so easy however. In-house lawyers with one to five years PQE in the Midlands were the only surveyed group to see wages fall, as their salaries ranged from £42,000 and £56,000 compared to an upper range of £58,000 the year before. Meanwhile, the North West was the only region to see an increase in salaries for newly qualified in-house lawyers, suggesting that lucrative salaries are either only available to in-house lawyers if they have come over from private practice, or if they have spent the majority of their career in-house already.
When it comes to bonuses, the Midlands are leading the way with 81% of respondents in the region reporting a bonus last year of around £21,000. Yorkshire and the North East had an average of £18,5000 bonuses with the North West at around £19,000.
The in-house role remains most lucrative in London, as you would expect; but it is a role that is attracting decent salaries and personnel across the country. Companies now recognise that to keep and attract the best talent, wherever they are in the country, they have to pay handsomely.