Lawyer Pay

More Calif. Firms to Pay Associates $160,000

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More California firms have announced they will pay new associates $160,000 a year.

The latest firms to indicate they will reach that pay level are Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman; Munger, Tolles & Olson; and Manatt, Phelps & Phillips, according to the Recorder. Shartsis Friese is beating that, raising first-year salaries to $165,000.

A statement by Pillsbury Winthrop says the pay hike won’t be tied to billing rates. “We share our clients’ concerns about escalating fees of outside counsel and will not raise our established 2007 rates because of this decision,” it says. “And, despite speculations that some firms will require more billable hours from associates, Pillsbury reaffirms that our current 1,950 billable … requirements.”

Consultant Peter Zeughauser of Newport Beach, Calif., predicts many more firms will soon be joining the pay-hike bandwagon. “Whoever else hasn’t gone yet is going to go,” he told the Recorder.

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