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Host

What are typical litigation paralegal salaries? Do some companies pay a lot more for this position than others? What does a top earner make in this field?

What skills should you learn to increase your salary?

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sue in Columbia, South Carolina

95 months ago

salaries for paralegals in Norfolk, VA?

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Emma in Stamford, Connecticut

95 months ago

Take a look at the Indeed Salary Search tool. Here's a search I did for Paralegal in Norfolk, VA:
www.indeed.com/salary?q1=paralegal&l1=Norfolk%2C+VA&tm=1

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Z28 in Boston, Massachusetts

78 months ago

In Massachusetts, they are paying $9 to $12/hr. Except headhunters who list jobs at $75,000.00 and when you apply for the job, they want to schelp you off on a temporary assignment.

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kmm in Wilmington, Delaware

77 months ago

Z28 in Boston, Massachusetts said: In Massachusetts, they are paying $9 to $12/hr. Except headhunters who list jobs at $75,000.00 and when you apply for the job, they want to schelp you off on a temporary assignment.

In Philadephia, temp legal agencies pay $16-17/hour. I worked for a sole practioner on my first paralegal job and I was paid $11/hour with no benefits at all.

I too have worked my tailbone off- and have been completely burnt out of the field after 10 years by a few too many toxic attorneys. Yes, I work in Litigation. Did not get out of the fire because Paralegal was my job skill, and they are not transferable skills to equal paying position. It took me 4 years to get to $40K with benefits.

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kmm in Wilmington, Delaware

77 months ago

kmm in Wilmington, Delaware said: In Philadephia, temp legal agencies pay $16-17/hour. I worked for a sole practioner on my first paralegal job and I was paid $11/hour with no benefits at all.[QUOTE]

After my first job, which I worked almost, I landed a new job with a truely toxic attorney. After 3 months, I got out or he would have destroyed me. Unfortunately, I had to jump into legal temp work. The good part about the temp work was that I had way more cake assignments then toxic assignments. The bad part is that for over a year, I had no benefits thus I was not contributing to a 401k plan or other company savings plan. Thus I worked, but did not build a future during those years.

Speaking of 401K or tradition IRA, offered at law firms and corporations, I have learned that THE COMPANY DOES NOT HAVE TO INSTITUTE A 1 YEAR WAITING PERIOD. You can be put in the plan after 90 or 60 days if they want to. If they say otherwise, It is BS. In my 10 years of working, I have only 1x been signed up in the law firm IRA plan by 90 days. I worked for a corporation that said that their rules were a 1 year wait to be in the company 401K. I was put out the door after 6 months [never wil know exactly why as they kept all reasons cryptic] I lost a lot of money towards my future in my 10 years of legal - and that makes my unhappy.

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kmm in Wilmington, Delaware

77 months ago

kmm in Wilmington, Delaware said:

Correction - to above comment: "I worked on my first paralegal job almost 2 years."

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Legal Angel

77 months ago

Host said: What are typical litigation paralegal salaries? Do some companies pay a lot more for this position than others? What does a top earner make in this field?

What skills should you learn to increase your salary?

It depends on the size of the company. For instance a larger company will pay more on average. However, there are always exceptions. As a well-experienced litigation paralegal in CT, I can make $20 or more an hour or $45-55K/yr. With corporate experience, you make far more. Your best bet is to check labor statistics with your state's department of labor or comparable office.

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kmm in Wilmington, Delaware

77 months ago

Displaced Legal Professional in Denver, Colorado said: Entry level around here earns $28K-$34K. Three to five years of experience earns about $40K+. Five-plus years of experience earns $48K-$55K or more.

I agree with checking the Bureau of Labor Statistics or your state's department of labor. Also look at ads.

In response to salary of paralegal, it does matter as to the office situation you are working. Example: I worked for a sole practioner who paid low by the hour and offered no benefits. Main reason: his practice of law did not make that much money. Example: I temped for a sole practioner who can afford to pay (remebere, it is also a tax benift for attorney) who paid his last assistant 35K, health benefits, 2 weeks vaca, and a savings contribution at the end of the year. His practice was generating a lot more money.

As a general rule, big firms will pay the most and have all the benies. However, the above example tells one that it does depend on the situation.

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Josie in Manteo, North Carolina

76 months ago

Nationally, the average paralegal salary is $50,496. Litigation paralegal salaries in top markets can reach six-figures.

See: legalcareers.about.com/od/careerprofiles/p/Paralegals.htm

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kmm in Wilmington, Delaware

76 months ago

Displaced Legal Professional in Denver, Colorado said: Josie in Manteo, North Carolina: "Nationally, the average paralegal salary is $50,496...."

With how much experience?

In Colorado, the mean (average) paralegal pay for 2007 was $47,437.30. Entry paralegal pay was $33,104.28. Experienced paralegal pay was $54,604.32. In Denver, mean salary pay for 2007 was $49,419.53. Entry pay was $34,651.71. Experienced pay was $56,802.93. Legal assistants are included in the category.

And there is a big difference between the "mean" salary of a Paralegal and less then mean. In Delaware, one on the graduates in my Paralegal school, was paid $10/hr working for a sole practioner, and with no benefits to start. This was her first Paralegal job.

My first Paralegal job was for a sole practioner in PA and I was paid $11/hr, and no benefits. GOsh, I remember that after I moved on from my first job and was temping in city of Philadelphia as a legal secretary, there was a position open in the office. It was a small office. The HR woman mentioned it to me and I stated thta I was looking for $35,000. She did not like that and repored to the Legal temp agency that she did not like me. The attorney I worked for tht one week of temping tled me he was very happy with my work. POINT- It was shocking to me tht the HR woman acted as if $35k was way too much money to pay me for a permanent position in the small firm. I think that threw my confidence off as to my Value in the workforce. And I knew I was good in litigation - but apparently the legal world re-acted differently to me.

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kmm in Wilmington, Delaware

76 months ago

kmm in Wilmington, Delaware said:

I think that threw my confidence off as to my Value in the workforce. And I knew I was good in litigation - but apparently the legal world re-acted differently to me.

On reflection, I did get an offer of $33k in a Big Firm in Philadelphia in October, after graduation aralegal school in June. It was for a Partner bing his legal secretary - and he really liked me. Anyway- I blew the offer because I was afraid I would fail due to the typing . About 3 years later, I got a permanent legal secretary job in same firm at $35K - which I only lasted 30 days due to the typing.

There were many times times I was shocked by the reaction of an older HR woman, when I had to get past her in the prelimiinary interview for a Paralegal position at a big Delaware firm. She asked me in the interview if I TYPED BY PECKING with one finger or did I use all my fingers. INternally, I felt very insulted - and I never met with an attorney.

As I said, I had some very bad reactions in law firms at the getgo. I think it caused me to think I had no value or desirable skills or they did not like my personality, or me, as I am reflecting at this moment. Later, as I was temping into my 3rd year of legal work - I found many offices that did like me. ONE TIME- I was temping and basically ofered the job by a Partner - who then told me to go to HR and get the job. The older HR woman blew me off. IN THE END- it turned out that me getting the JOB also meant I had to have drinks with the married Partner after work - which I declined - and the job never came about. MY Good looks at that time were a help and a hinderence in my career. I would take a stabbing guess that all the reactions caused me to have some type of mental/emotional problems -along the way. Did not have time to think about it at the time as I had to regroup and keep looking and working. What a messy career I had.

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kmm in Wilmington, Delaware

76 months ago

kmm in Wilmington, Delaware said: And there is a big difference between the "mean" salary of a Paralegal and less then mean.

Correction: Less than mean.

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kmm in Wilmington, Delaware

76 months ago

Displaced Legal Professional in Denver, Colorado said: Nonetheless, Cindy, you hung in for ten years. Some people never get the chance. Even so, people wanting this "career" should heed your stories.

My stories are messed up-And I was not on drugs. SOme people have good stories, like our famous DEE DEE, in Wilmington, DE.

I had some bazarro experiences at interviews,. The one I spoke about above (HR asking do I peck or >>>to type) I do not know if this is the norm - I have no other stories from other people to compare to.

DebJam in CA is still working. She loses a job, she get another. DDT in Las Vegas, had a rough start, now she is settled in a good job with the Union.
Mine landings got rougher and rougher until there was no ground under my feet.
I worked all right, but at the end. worked for 6 months and did not find another job for 1 year. I was working and falling further behind - till I had no behind.That is my story and I am sticking to it.

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kmm in Wilmington, Delaware

76 months ago

Displaced Legal Professional in Denver, Colorado said: Nonetheless, Cindy, you hung in for ten years. Some people never get the chance. Even so, people wanting this "career" should heed your stories.

Yeah, and all the chances that I got, I blew. That's not good. No idea how I blew most of them. It was what it was and in the end, it was not. As in got no money for all my work years.

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kmm in Wilmington, Delaware

76 months ago

kmm in Wilmington, Delaware said: I would take a stabbing guess that all the reactions caused me to have some type of mental/emotional problems -along the way. Did not have time to think about it at the time as I had to regroup and keep looking and working. What a messy career I had.

BIG CORRECTION: Mental/emotional problems. I need to re-phrase what I mean by this. Changing jobs a lot (my first job I had almost 2 years) is an Emotional Rollercoaster. Two attorneys I worked for had some serious Borderline Personality Disorder et. al. issues. ANd if you do not get away from them, they will make yu mental. You know they are mental. ANd knowing that you are about to be terminated but have to hang in there till it happens, as it will happen soon - will cause a lot of Anxiety. Workng for In-house counsel in a Real Estate Investment company, 5 months in I am personally handed my x-mas bonus check by General Counsel, my boss, and he lies to me saying, "Yu will be getting a raise and there will be more bonuses." He knew at that time I was going out the door, and at that moment I was poitive I was going out the door. He is a bad lier. Yeah, that will cause Anxiety and you have to keep working and pretend it is OK or you will have anxiety attacks all day long

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kmm in Wilmington, Delaware

76 months ago

Displaced Legal Professional in Denver, Colorado said: kmm in Wilmington, Delaware: "Some people have good stories, like our famous DEE DEE, in Wilmington, DE."

Yeah, she had some stories, all right.

LOL- SHe lives in Ozz.

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kmm in Wilmington, Delaware

76 months ago

kmm in Wilmington, Delaware said: Yeah, and all the chances that I got, I blew. That's not good. No idea how I blew most of them. It was what it was and in the end, it was not. As in got no money for all my work years.

That is really not accurate. I did make some bad judgment calls and not interview when the HR woman told me that the attorney was Nice. Now who is the Dumbo. Cannot cry over spilt milk. When you have been on an emotional rollercoaster your judgment gets clouded.

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kmm in Wilmington, Delaware

76 months ago

Displaced Legal Professional in Denver, Colorado said: Nonetheless, Cindy, you hung in for ten years. Some people never get the chance. Even so, people wanting this "career" should heed your stories.

Well said DLP. I did indeed "Hang-in there."

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kmm in Wilmington, Delaware

76 months ago

kmm in Wilmington, Delaware said: Well said DLP. I did indeed "Hang-in there."

NEW COMMENTARY:

According to INDEED, the average salary of a Litigation Salary in Wilmington, DE is $47,000. Of course that means experienced.

I do not see how that is accurate, as to an AVERAGE.

After 6+ years of Litigation experience, and performing Job Tasks that I was already familiar with - had working experience in- I was paid $35K in 2001.

I had exactly what they were looking for and they liked me- at the Interviews. (2).

A big bank in wilm, DE was paying $45K, if they had hired me, for Commercial real estate. They did not hire me. With experience, in this field $50K is the number. I know this first-hand.

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kmm in Wilmington, Delaware

76 months ago

Displaced Legal Professional in Denver, Colorado said: Try looking at the Bureau of Labor Statistics or Delaware's state labor department website for better comparisons. Not to denigrate Indeed's information in any way, but you know that BLS and state labor department information will be authentic.

Also, your salary is from 2001. It probably would be more in 2008 dollars.

It is the amount of experience that dictates the salary - and the market. No Way is the "average" salary in Wilmington, DE $47k- I am not putting down INdeed. The Labor statistics are also wacked. There would be no change from 2001 to 2008 if I was at same firm, just 5% raise each year at best. Maybe I could get it to $40k after 1 year. Your salary did not change because the boss does not give Raises- You actually started out at your last job with a good salary, for the job. Should have does not matter.

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kmm in Wilmington, Delaware

76 months ago

kmm in Wilmington, Delaware said: It is the amount of experience that dictates the salary - and the market. No Way is the "average" salary in Wilmington, DE $47k- I am not putting down INdeed. The Labor statistics are also wacked. There would be no change from 2001 to 2008 if I was at same firm, just 5% raise each year at best. Maybe I could get it to $40k after 1 year. Your salary did not change because the boss does not give Raises- You actually started out at your last job with a good salary, for the job. Should have does not matter.

AND how cheap they think they can get you. MAYBE- had I tried a negotiation, I might have gotten $37k to start - Maybe after a year, wehn I am running my shop just fine - a jump to $40K, after that, maybe the 5% raise. UH- that does not h9it $47K. Not arguing with you. I have been exposed to more jobs and I know a lot more about real pay. OF course - BIG FIRMS-----will pay higher.

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kmm in Wilmington, Delaware

76 months ago

kmm in Wilmington, Delaware said: AND how cheap they think they can get you. MAYBE- had I tried a negotiation, I might have gotten $37k to start - Maybe after a year, wehn I am running my shop just fine - a jump to $40K, after that, maybe the 5% raise. UH- that does not h9it $47K. Not arguing with you. I have been exposed to more jobs and I know a lot more about real pay. OF course - BIG FIRMS-----will pay higher.

From what I remnember, You had a good starting salary and benefits on your very first Paralegal job. Good job.

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kmm in Wilmington, Delaware

76 months ago

Hey DLP- At the p/t position with TABS interview- he must have indicated pay. That should give you some idea of your monetary value in today's market. And second, when you are unemployed - they can get you cheap. They know it and the person interviewing should know it. (in a bad job market, unlike the 80's)

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kmm in Wilmington, Delaware

76 months ago

Hey DLP- At the p/t position with TABS interview- he must have indicated pay. That should give you some idea of your monetary value in today's market. And second, when you are unemployed - they can get you cheap. They know it and the person interviewing should know it. (in a bad job market, unlike the 80's)

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kmm in Wilmington, Delaware

76 months ago

kmm in Wilmington, Delaware said: AND how cheap they think they can get you. MAYBE- had I tried a negotiation, I might have gotten $37k to start - Maybe after a year, wehn I am running my shop just fine - a jump to $40K, after that, maybe the 5% raise. UH- that does not h9it $47K. Not arguing with you. I have been exposed to more jobs and I know a lot more about real pay. OF course - BIG FIRMS-----will pay higher.

There is a NYC BIG FIRM, with satalite office in Wilm, DE. AND they pay NYC wages - so - MAYBE- that firm is throwing off the numbers as to average salary. Otherwise, it makes no sense.

ALSO, remember it was and may still be the Bureau of Labor that posted PARALEGAL as one of the top 10 growth jobs, and they have been posting that since 1995 and still. DUNNO

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kmm in Wilmington, Delaware

76 months ago

DLP- Could you imagine after being offered the job, and you negotiate by saying THE DEPT OF LABOUR, says that the average pay for this job is 47K- So I should be getting at least 42K.

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kmm in Wilmington, Delaware

76 months ago

Hey DLP- At the p/t position with TABS interview- he must have indicated pay. That should give you some idea of your monetary value in today's market. And second, when you are unemployed - they can get you cheap. They know it and the person interviewing should know it. (in a bad job market, unlike the 80's)

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sandinmytoes in Ontario, California

76 months ago

kmm has totally taken over this thread. There is no useful info to be found b/c of "it." Geesh.

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kmm in Wilmington, Delaware

76 months ago

Displaced Legal Professional in Denver, Colorado said: What kind of information are you seeking? The thread topic is salary. Several posts on the thread address salary. The moderator posted a link to a salary search tool.

kmm has every right to post, just as you, I or anyone else.

THANK YOU DLP. Perhaps I should lighten up, ene though I feel I am discussing salary

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kmm in Wilmington, Delaware

76 months ago

sandinmytoes in Ontario, California said: kmm has totally taken over this thread. There is no useful info to be found b/c of "it." Geesh.

Saninmytoes- If you have something to say as to Salary, please kindly post.

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kmm in Wilmington, Delaware

76 months ago

Displaced Legal Professional in Denver, Colorado said: You have been. Don't worry about it.

WELL, well, well. I just took a look at the 2006 Delaware Paralegal Assoc. Salary Report.for New Castle County (where I live, Wilmington)

Based on those who answered the survey:
The majority of them reported that the Average Starting Salary was $38,943;
53% of Survey respondents had 10+ years experience; Average base salary reported was $51,723. The majority of respondents (with experience) make $40-55K.

According to this- MAN- was I UNDERPAID. Very Sad. Hurts., When you need a job and they make a decent offer, (Ishould have been paid min $40K w/y experience), you just take it and go to work. Deal with a Salary Raise after you prove yourself.

To ad insult to injury, I was UNDERPAID and UNDERVALUED. Now that really hurts. ANd I have the B.A. degree from Boston Univ. and The Paralegal Certificate from a Law School. OUCH, ouch Very sad.

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kmm in Wilmington, Delaware

76 months ago

sandinmytoes in Ontario, California said: kmm has totally taken over this thread. There is no useful info to be found b/c of "it." Geesh.

Kindly never reference me or anyone on this forum an "IT". Perhaps someone need to grow-up.

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kmm in Wilmington, Delaware

76 months ago

kmm in Wilmington, Delaware said: LOL- SHe lives in Ozz.

And makes $50k or more, with her bosses not in the office most of the time.

Some people do well in this field.

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kmm in Wilmington, Delaware

76 months ago

kmm in Wilmington, Delaware said: AVERAGE" salary in Wilmington, DE $47k-

yes way - according to survey. If all salaries were included, meaning those paralegals who did not respond to the survey, IT would be lower.

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kmm in Wilmington, Delaware

76 months ago

Hit the comment button by accident.

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kmm in Wilmington, Delaware

76 months ago

Displaced Legal Professional in Denver, Colorado said: Entry level around here earns $28K-$34K. Three to five years of experience earns about $40K+. Five-plus years of experience earns $48K-$55K or more.

I agree with checking the Bureau of Labor Statistics or your state's department of labor. Also look at ads.

Entry level in Philadelphia in small firm can range from low-twenties to mid-twenties. That was in 1995. I think that when you are Entry, they pay you what is in the budget. of course.

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Hotrod in Idaho Falls, Idaho

75 months ago

I am looking into becoming a Paralegal (Bachelor's Degree). It is interesting reading the input here. I was thinking about Litigation since it appears to pay the best and offer more solid opportunities. Does anyone here have a Bachelor's that I can compare salaries to?

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Eliy in Sanford, Florida

72 months ago

kmm in Wilmington, Delaware said: And there is a big difference between the "mean" salary of a Paralegal and less then mean. In Delaware, one on the graduates in my Paralegal school, was paid $10/hr working for a sole practioner, and with no benefits to start. This was her first Paralegal job.

My first Paralegal job was for a sole practioner in PA and I was paid $11/hr, and no benefits. GOsh, I remember that after I moved on from my first job and was temping in city of Philadelphia as a legal secretary, there was a position open in the office. It was a small office. The HR woman mentioned it to me and I stated thta I was looking for $35,000. She did not like that and repored to the Legal temp agency that she did not like me. The attorney I worked for tht one week of temping tled me he was very happy with my work. POINT- It was shocking to me tht the HR woman acted as if $35k was way too much money to pay me for a permanent position in the small firm. I think that threw my confidence off as to my Value in the workforce. And I knew I was good in litigation - but apparently the legal world re-acted differently to me.

She was probably upset because you were asking for mre than she makes herself!

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kmm in Wilmington, Delaware

70 months ago

Displaced Legal Professional in Denver, Colorado said: Your state department of labor should have wage information. Look up "paralegal" or "legal assistant." As I wrote, above, you can also look up wages on the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics website.

Litigation doesn't necessarily pay the best. At least around here, IP appears to pay better

Absolutely, IP is the highest paying area of law for paralegals.

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robrg1836

37 months ago

I am interested in the typical litigation paralegal salaries.

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