Celebrating 10 years! 2007-2017

Lawyers that makes 500K per year

Beside those who work in biglaw, who are they? Where are the mrlollipop09/05/17
Heavy hitting PI attorneys. General counsels of companies 2breedbares09/06/17
Yeah, I worked for a mid-sized firm like that, too. Big part tomjoadsload09/06/17
Partners of PI shops. isthisit09/06/17
yes on General Counsels. however its not always a base salar lionelhutz09/06/17
In large LGA departments, the GC's direct reports / function dogdaypm09/06/17
I've known solos who make that kind of money. One guy I k dingbat09/06/17
Guessing the solo was former biglaw or insanely well connect loblawyer09/06/17
former biglaw, about 3 years before moving on to better oppo dingbat09/06/17
I know a couple bankruptcy solos on town attorneydavid09/06/17
Two-man & secretary team that subleases office space in our lawyer209/06/17
You will not make that much unless you are bringing in those mtbislife09/06/17
This is not a flame answer - go be a slumlord. In addition t flyer1409/06/17
Sounds like a plan prestiiigiousone10/05/17
Law profs dovesoap09/06/17
Good one but certainly not all or even most clear $500k. www smallyer09/07/17
Thanks for posting this I'd really like to see responses. smallyer09/07/17
Some class action "consumer rights" attorneys can make a kil spaghetti10/10/17
Lobbyists on K street. Edit lobbyists in state capitals too. secondcareerlawyer09/07/17
Class action lawyers definitely, even mid tier. I think top neclasslawyer09/07/17
This may be a shock, but I know a few Family Law Attorneys t cocolawyer09/22/17
Do they make that type of money or just bill out for that am nighthawk09/26/17
Good family law attorneys never let a case go into the negat cocolawyer09/26/17
that's either really high or really low for advertising. dingbat09/29/17
It's neither high or low. You have to remember the solo atto cocolawyer10/09/17
Criminal law attorneys who charge $100,000 for one murder or fettywap09/26/17
DUI cases is a good way to waste your money. Bunch of plea m cocolawyer09/27/17
DUI cases is a good way to waste your money. Bunch of plea m cocolawyer09/27/17
http://transparentcalifornia.com/sa laries/search/?q=PROF-AY- flyer1410/09/17
Not at my old school. One of the professors sued a few years fettywap10/09/17
Small law firm owners who have built profitable mills can m confused1l9310/10/17

mrlollipop (Sep 5, 2017 - 11:29 pm)

Beside those who work in biglaw, who are they? Where are they? Please share!

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2breedbares (Sep 6, 2017 - 3:39 am)

Heavy hitting PI attorneys.

General counsels of companies.

The owners of midsized firms (if they are one of few equity partners and have a lot of business). I worked for a firm like this where the sole owner of the firm had all the equity and the only big client (10 million a year in business). He obviously made more than 500k.

Small firms that cater to a rich ethnic population somehow.

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tomjoadsload (Sep 6, 2017 - 11:11 am)

Yeah, I worked for a mid-sized firm like that, too. Big partner made north of 1 million annually, smaller partners took home 300-500k, everyone else made diddly squat.

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isthisit (Sep 6, 2017 - 8:06 am)

Partners of PI shops.

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lionelhutz (Sep 6, 2017 - 11:03 am)

yes on General Counsels. however its not always a base salary over $500k - there are a lot of other comp elements, restricted stock, options, bonuses, 401k match, travel perks & defined benefit pensions (for some). So midside and larger company GC comp usually is over $500k all in. If you look at proxies filed with the SEC, a lot of GCs are in the 5 highest paid execs at a public company and their comp elements are disclosed. of course the route to these jobs is usually through biglaw but there are plenty of examples otherwise.

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dogdaypm (Sep 6, 2017 - 11:13 am)

In large LGA departments, the GC's direct reports / function heads are also likely over $500 once all the comp elements are taken into account.

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dingbat (Sep 6, 2017 - 12:53 pm)

I've known solos who make that kind of money.

One guy I knew was part-time counsel to about 5 companies, including 1 investment fund. Made $50k/year from one of them, and six figures from another. In addition he also had his own practice, and had one client that generated $25k per transaction - with maybe 5-10 transactions per year.

One financial intermediary company I knew of (doing structured finance) had 3 attorneys among the 4 equity partners. Even the junior partner made a million a year

Then there's the company that does corporate barter, their attorneys made bank

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loblawyer (Sep 6, 2017 - 4:53 pm)

Guessing the solo was former biglaw or insanely well connected. Just to be clear to any lemmings that this is not a "solo" outcome unless maybe PI.

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dingbat (Sep 6, 2017 - 9:17 pm)

former biglaw, about 3 years before moving on to better opportunities.
(yes, for biglaw attorneys there are better opportunities - but very few are able to make the jump)

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attorneydavid (Sep 6, 2017 - 9:17 pm)

I know a couple bankruptcy solos on town

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lawyer2 (Sep 6, 2017 - 1:19 pm)

Two-man & secretary team that subleases office space in our suite pulled in well over $800k last year. $300k was the salary of the 5th year associate. They do catastrophic PI. The 5th year just parted ways to start his own firm because he felt he should've made more.

At a new attorney orientation I attended this year, our state bar said PI attorneys made the most, with a $200k median salary. I'd really like to break into the business, but it seems like most PI attorneys do NOT want to share the pie. I even offered to work for free just to learn, but got little interest.

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mtbislife (Sep 6, 2017 - 11:26 pm)

You will not make that much unless you are bringing in those clients, thats the key to PI.

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flyer14 (Sep 6, 2017 - 1:33 pm)

This is not a flame answer - go be a slumlord. In addition to making a lot of income, rental income is treated very favorably from a tax standpoint.

Even the Kushner family got its start slumlording, and look where it got them.

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prestiiigiousone (Oct 5, 2017 - 2:37 pm)

Sounds like a plan

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dovesoap (Sep 6, 2017 - 11:10 pm)

Law profs

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smallyer (Sep 7, 2017 - 1:14 am)

Good one but certainly not all or even most clear $500k. www.floridahasarighttoknow.com

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smallyer (Sep 7, 2017 - 1:35 am)

Thanks for posting this I'd really like to see responses.

I'm a solo plus some staff make a good six figure income but not $500k. I could probably handle more business but at some point the quality of life trade off isn't worth it.

Know some GC's and can confirm total compensation is usually over $500k even at smaller companies. Also you are literally on call 24/7.

Know some PI lawyers and most do well but only the top get over $500k. I don't think any of the ones I know make that much.

Non-PI class action litigators / partners can clear $500k.

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spaghetti (Oct 10, 2017 - 1:04 am)

Some class action "consumer rights" attorneys can make a killing. It's like PI - A lot of it is just getting that good case.

My friend, an associate at a small but lucrative wage and hour mill, recently worked on a case that settled for $15mil, meaning the firm got $5mil. They (he) just lucked out by having someone who got fired from a major retail chain call them because she wanted to sue. Turns out she and hundreds of other employees across the country were subject to a very clearly illegal companywide policy. They survived a 12b6 and started negotiating it. A few days' work by my friend and one of the partners got them (the three partners at the firm) about $1.5mil each. Unbelievable.

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secondcareerlawyer (Sep 7, 2017 - 10:18 am)

Lobbyists on K street. Edit lobbyists in state capitals too.

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neclasslawyer (Sep 7, 2017 - 5:52 pm)

Class action lawyers definitely, even mid tier. I think top of the food chain in almost every practice area tops $500k. I know workers comp
Lawyers that make way over that.

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cocolawyer (Sep 22, 2017 - 7:47 pm)

This may be a shock, but I know a few Family Law Attorneys that are making around $500k per year. They are specialists that are experienced, charge $400-$500 dollars an hour, have low overhead (spouse is the secretary or paralegal), and have no shortage of clients. They bill an average of 140 hours per month. They make $750,000.00 per year (there is some negatives), they spend $10,000.00 on advertising, $5000.00 on supplies, $20,000.00 on office, plus utilites, and they put like 100k in the bank for the rainy day fund, and bwamo they are rolling in it.

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nighthawk (Sep 26, 2017 - 1:19 pm)

Do they make that type of money or just bill out for that amount? It's about what you collect, not what you bill.

A family law attorney told me excitedly that she bills at $320 per hour. I said that's nice. Do you get clients? If you do, are you able to collect? If you go into collections, do any of those clients come back to you? If they do not come back to you, how hard is it to drum up business?

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cocolawyer (Sep 26, 2017 - 1:32 pm)

Good family law attorneys never let a case go into the negative. Some, just because of its very nature do, but that should be the exception not the rule. The individuals I talk about above collect $750k per year. They spend somewhere between 800-1000k on advertising per month. Supplies, office rent utilities cost like 20-30k per year. They gross around $500k.

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dingbat (Sep 29, 2017 - 12:35 pm)

that's either really high or really low for advertising.

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cocolawyer (Oct 9, 2017 - 1:07 pm)

It's neither high or low. You have to remember the solo attorneys raking in the bread are individuals that are established in their community, respected by their peers, and generally get favorable results for their client.

That means they get a lot of referral business from previous clients, and from other attorney's in the area that like them. That will bring in 2-3 new clients per month. Family Law is unique as individuals will generally look at sites like yelp or avvo for attorneys. By paying to have PRO on AVVO and ensuring your Yelp presence is strong, you will get another 1-2 clients per month. That cost's minimal. Good firms usually lose about 1-2 clients per month either due to inability to pay or case is final. So you gain every month 3 clients, with minimal advertising. Its a model for success, unless you are known as a douche in the community. Then you will have to throw some more money at marketing to make up for your non-existent referral base.

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fettywap (Sep 26, 2017 - 3:39 pm)

Criminal law attorneys who charge $100,000 for one murder or rape case. I think the high volume DUI attorneys pull in that much too.

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cocolawyer (Sep 27, 2017 - 6:31 pm)

DUI cases is a good way to waste your money. Bunch of plea monkeys.

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cocolawyer (Sep 27, 2017 - 6:31 pm)

DUI cases is a good way to waste your money. Bunch of plea monkeys.

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flyer14 (Oct 9, 2017 - 2:08 am)

http://transparentcalifornia.com/salaries/search/?q=PROF-AY-LAW&y=2016

Law profs make 500k a year.

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fettywap (Oct 9, 2017 - 9:16 am)

Not at my old school. One of the professors sued a few years ago. The highest earning professor there was making about $120,000 or $140,000, and he had been there forever. Most didn't even start at $100,000.

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confused1l93 (Oct 10, 2017 - 1:34 am)

Small law firm owners who have built profitable mills can make that.

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