Legal Law

Biglaw Agency Boosts Salaries For The THIRD Time This Yr, However…

How badly does your firm want to compete in the white-hot lateral market? For some firms, the answer can be evidenced in its compensation. Did your firm raise salaries once this year? Great, a lot of firms did that. But did your firm raises salaries twice this year? Eh, probably not, only a few did. Did your firm raise salaries three times this year? Only two firms that we know of can say that they did, and one of them did it earlier this week.

As noted above, this firm has bumped associate salaries three times thus far in 2021… but it still hasn’t quite reached the $205K starting salary that associates have long been dreaming of. Which firm could it be?

Stoel Rives — a firm that brought in $259,328,000 gross revenue in 2020, ranking it at No. 124 in the most recent Am Law 200 — has committed to putting more cash in associates’ pockets three times this year. The firm’s first announcement was made in July, when all associates received a $10,000 salary bump. Then, in August, the firm announced that effective October 1, starting salaries would rise once again, with commensurate raises for more senior associates (along with a yearly requirement for 1900 billable hours). Here’s what the firm’s salaries looked like in October across all of its office:

  • Anchorage: $125,000
  • Boise: $125,000
  • Minneapolis: $155,000
  • Portland: $155,000
  • Sacramento: $155,000
  • Salt Lake City: $155,000
  • San Diego: $180,000
  • San Francisco: $180,000
  • Seattle: $180,000
  • Washington D.C.: $180,000

Earlier this week, Stoel Rives surprised associates with a third salary announcement. This time, the firm will be increasing associate starting pay by $10,000 or more, with adjustments for more senior associates as well, starting in 2022. According to managing partner Melissa Jones, these compensation changes (a “market correction”) are part of the the firm’s plans to “remain competitive in a tight market for talent.”

Congratulations to everyone at the firm. Maybe in 2022, the firm will meet the market with its next round of raises.

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Staci ZaretskyStaci Zaretsky is a senior editor at Above the Law, where she’s worked since 2011. She’d love to hear from you, so please feel free to email her with any tips, questions, comments, or critiques. You can follow her on Twitter or connect with her on LinkedIn.


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