Slaughter Christmas

It's not quite Christmas, but the raise means NQs can splash out on Scruff-A-Luvs anyway 

Slaughter and May has upped the pay for its newly qualified solicitors to £125,000.

The raise of around 9% (up from £115,000) was effective from 1 November. The base salary puts the firm's NQs on a par with the rest of the Magic Circle.  

"We are pleased to announce that we have completed a review of salaries for all associates," a Slaughter and May spokeswoman told RollOnFriday. "Our NQ salary will increase to £125,000, and all associates will move through the scales." 

While the rise is an early Christmas present for NQs, it's not known whether the firm is upping salaries for all associates, as it doesn't disclose such details in relation to other bands. 'Bunching' of salaries as a result of the NQ pay wars has become a common complaint at other firms: however, the firm said that its next bonus for associates will be reviewed in December.

Allen & Overy and Linklaters raised NQ salary to £125k earlier this year, while Clifford Chance and Freshfields reached that figure some 18 months ago.

Meanwhile, just a smidge below, the likes of Herbert Smith Freehills, Hogan Lovells and Mayer Brown all pay NQs a base salary of £120k. 

Playing chicken in a different field, 'BigLaw' US firms with offices in London still offer the biggest wedge by far to their junior lawyers. 

The elite US firms have adopted the Cravath salary scale, which is converted to sterling when paid to lawyers in London. This has led to eye-watering sums, particularly due to favourable FX rates in recent times.

Members of the £170k+ club for NQ salary include the likes of Akin GumpKirkland & Ellis, Latham & Watkins, and Vinson & Elkins.

The rise by Slaughter and May could be good timing to give their salary rating a boost in the RollOnFriday Best Law Firms to Work At 2024 survey. If you're at Slaughters, or any firm for that matter, have your say below.

Tip Off ROF


Anon 17 November 23 10:03

I don't think Slaughter's associates can complain too much about bunching.  158k and 4PQE (according RoF's other story and aligns with a colleague that jumped that way) vs 115k NQ gives a solid 125k 1PQE, 135k 2PQE, 145k 3PQE and 158k 4 PQE progression. 10k bands always used to be par for the course at the two places I have worked at. Our current banding is 1PQE is worth 5k a year.

Slaughter and May associate 17 November 23 10:04


You missed the real story, which is that only NQs got pay rises (and 0.5 and 1PQEs got pay rises to put them on par with the NQs).

The effect is that the band's have been compressed (or have not moved above 1.5PQE) and critically, NQs, 0.5PQEs, 1PQEs are all paid the same.

Scale for the juniors is now:

NQ, 0.5,1 PQE - 125k

1.5 PQE - 127.5k

2PQE - 133.5k

2.5 PQE - 141k

3 PQE - 150k

3.5 PQE - 158.5k

Inside info 17 November 23 18:20

Rumours are that Pragnesh has his eyes on a takeover of Slaughter & May - it's imminent, just waiting for SRA sign-off.  You heard it here first

Related News