'Careful with the white gold, I'm in the civil service not Simmons.'
Simmons & Simmons has awarded £1,500 to staff most likely to be adversely impacted by the rising cost of living, while the government has given its lawyers £200.
Simmons' awards are being made to employees earning less less than £50,000 a year, including contractors. An impressed source told ROF the sums were not being made on a pro rata basis, meaning even part-time Simmons employees would receive the full amount.
"I love bitching about my employer as much as the next corporate wage slave, but hats off to them on this one", said the S&S insider: "Quietly doing a responsible thing".
A Simmons spokesperson confirmed that, "In recognition of the challenging economic climate, Simmons & Simmons will be giving a one off cost of living payment of £1500 to all UK staff earning below £50,000".
There was less appreciation for the munificence of management at the Government Legal Department, where staff have been also been given a one-off cost-of-living payment, of £200.
An insider told ROF, "Just when everyone at the GLD thinks things cannot get any possibly worse, the executive team (who are all on 6 figure salaries) have recognised the crippling levels of inflation and the soaring cost of living by giving the GLD workforce a one off payment", which, after tax and national insurance contributions, "will probably amount to 90 quid in their pocket".
The dissatisfaction is a symptom of wider discontent with the GLD board's failure to secure its lawyers a pay rise after 18 months. In an update leaked to ROF, GLD management confirmed to staff that it while it was still trying to "push forward with the pay case", it was "unable to implement an interim pay award".
After "looking at other ways" to recognise the efforts being made by staff and "the growing cost-of-living pressures being felt by many", it decided that raiding the GLD kitty was the solution. It means that although staff will get £200 apiece, the funding "will come from the in-year bonus pot", which "will reduce the amount of funds available for in-year bonuses for the remainder of the financial year". It's enough to make you feel all warm and fuzzy inside.
A spokesperson for the Government Legal Department said, "GLD continually strives to support its people and recognise the exceptional contribution our staff are making to helping the Government deliver its priorities, including the profound economic challenges the UK is facing. This one-off payment reflects this commitment and brings forward funding for payments already earmarked for later in the year". A GLD lawyer said, "Merry fucking Christmas".
Simmons has adopted the template of Bird & Bird, which in July made a one-off cost-of-living payment of £1,000 to all staff in London earning £50k or less. It joins a growing band of firms which have dipped their hands in their pockets as inflation, energy bills and the price of a pint of milk continue to climb. Clifford Chance has provided an extra £1,500 to all its trainee solicitors and business services staff, while Shoosmiths handed out £1,000 to all staff, and Irwin Mitchell has given everyone £900.
LOL at the GLD bonus of roughly £90 in their pocket.
That doesn't even buy 1g of energy powder anymore.
Surely you only work for the GLD if you can't get a job anywhere else!?
I am normally pretty brutal towards private practice. However, this is actually nice. Look after the bottom. Good on them.
Hopefully anyone decent will leave gld now. See how they like it when they're paying a shit load of money for temps and agency staff because they didn't treat their permies properly.
Most people work at the GLD because the work is interesting, being at the heart of government, and they like the idea of working in the public interest rather than just lining other people's pockets. Generally speaking, the people and culture are nicer than in private practice.
At the moment the pay situation is causing recruitment and retention problems and people who would love to be part of GLD are finding they can't afford to, particularly in London. Ultimately if the situation doesn't improve this will have a real impact on the ability of the government to deliver policy and public services
GLD pay staff an insulting bonus - using the staffs own bonus pot. So they are getting their own bonus money just in a different way. You couldn't make this stuff up, it's almost like it's material for a carry on film.
From a future trainee:
The £1.5k raise for those under £50k is undoubtedly a great gesture and welcomed by all (although as ALWAYS, the firm is among the last movers in the market).
Future trainees currently get £10k to live for a whole academic year during the LPC and £7.5k for the GDL. Even this is after some people asked for an increase and all they did was raise it by a measly £1k from £9k which already was below its peers. Firms need to realise that Future Trainees are also getting badly affected by this cost of living crisis. £10k barely covers rent and bills in London for at least 9 months of the LPC. Add travel to and from campus, food and some social life and we have nothing left. There are undoubtedly some fortunate people who can live with their parents etc but not all people have this luxury. For all the diversity and inclusion chat that law firms give, a clear way to show a commitment to this is to recognise that future trainees as people as well and increase payments for future trainees doing these courses. There is some argument for means-tested grants but its on the firms to figure it out.
GLD has a great culture, the best legal work going and some of the best lawyers in the country but the pay is shocking. I haven't had a real terms pay rise since 2009. Important to know though that the fault is not with senior managers, who only have the cash that politicians give them. And those politicians have shown that they hate civil servants and public services in general.
LOL at all the defensive GLDers.
You talk about being there for interesting legal work but whenever I have had to deal with you, you seem utterly inept. I have never witnessed such a lack of caring for the work. So, I am not sure I agree that you're there for the quality of work. Otherwise you would go to a big ticket firm.
Consider yourself lucky. Ince has done NOTHING.
Working at GLD definitely spells the end of your career, I’ve worked across a few GLD lawyers and I’m glad that mediocrity isn’t contagious
A&O has done the same for all staff earning less than £55k
@Good but not quite carling 18 November 22
??! Reality check maybe? As a GDL/LPC student you are not yet part of the firm. They are not your employer. If you get a £10k grant and a fully funded LPC, you are already better off than 95% of those on your course who are mostly self funding.
Count your blessings. You choose to pursue a career in law, you need to front the costs. Those firms make a contribution to your studies, you are lucky they do. There’s no reason for them to front more of your costs when respectfully, (although I’m sure you’ll be pretty good one day) you’ve not earned the firm a penny yet or proven your worth, and (no offence), it’s not yet known how long you’ll be with the firm.
Clyde & Co have given / done NOTHING. Oh, we can buy a discounted Tastecard though (whoopee)!
So a trainee or someone living on their own gets a bonus but someone earning £51,000 with children and a mortgage doesn’t?
Better than RPC who have done diddly squat to support staff during this situation and only given a £1k bonus to those on under 30k a year.
50k is much more reasonable and helps those working in the support and business teams who are often in that middle ground between 30-50k.
@Good but not quite carling
Quite the sense of entitlement.
You’re not on a salary. Grants are not meant to cover your going out and social activities. They are to help you with your living costs. If London is too expensive, do the LPC somewhere cheaper. Not every one has parents to support them, of course not, then again, not everyone has firm sponsorship and grant maintenance (ie money for doing no client billing work) either. Many people on the LPC work to make ends meet because they recognise they need to be financially responsible for themselves.
If your firm is offering 10k on top of paying your fees, and you feel hard done by, you basically are comparing your treatment to the US and other City firms - who might pay their LPC students better. If so, you are in the minority. Most other LPC students, including those with training contracts understand the grant isn’t meant to cover everything and that they themselves will need to bridge any costs if they can’t make £10k last the year.
Shocking sense of entitlement.
Gld management are now sending out emails to everyone saying "yeah you know that Xmas dinner at (insert shit low quality restaurant of your choice/wetherspoons etc etc) well unfortunately guys the £30 gld normally puts towards it (which is one of the very few perks left of working there) is now no longer available so can you kindly pay for it yourself ?"
We may as well all start eating shit sandwiches. What a terrible terrible place to work.
"So a trainee or someone living on their own gets a bonus but someone earning £51,000 with children and a mortgage doesn’t? " - correct, you don't get paid extra just for choosing to having kids and self-chosen debt.
@Good but not quite carling 18 November 22 11:35
You absolute m***********.
Try doing the GDL and LPC on £0.
@ The gh0st of Paul Jenkins
Didn't even know they tipped in £30. None of the teams I've worked in have.