Which lawyers earn the most?

Highest paying specialism

Average salary

Investment Banking


Compliance & Regulatory


Antitrust, Trade & Competition


Investment Funds


Projects & Infrastructure


Lowest paying specialism

Average salary

Employment & Pensions


Public Law


Civil Litigation


Criminal Justice


Personal Injury


Source: 266 UK Associates with less than 5 years' experience

With the hit TV show 'Suits' showing lawyers to be the epitome of slick power and wealth, it may be that a larger than usual fresh raft of young graduates investigate the Law as a career. If money is part of their selection process when it comes to picking a specialism, which might incidentally help narrow down a best paying law firm, here are a few pointers:

Stereotypes still stand: Law associates working in Financial-related fields earn the most, while lawyers with public or individual clients get paid the least. Still, the gap is impressive : with the same experience and job title, personal injury lawyers earn x2.5 less than investment banking lawyers. High salaries in Compliance & Regulatory are a direct consequence of the financial crisis and the tougher financial regulations that ensued, with high budgets allocated by banks to either avoid paying fines or pre-empt legal entanglement.


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