Junior lawyers in greatest demand

Lawyers at the two year-PQE level were the most sought-after by both private practice employers and in-house teams.

While a newly qualified lawyer at a UK City firm could earn as much as £63,000 this year, compared with £53,000 in 2005, City private practice lawyers are increasingly moving in-house, according to the results of a salary survey by recruitment consultancy Robert Walters.

Lawyers are being attracted by better salary packages in commerce and industry. Newly qualified in-house lawyers can expect salaries of £41,000-£56,000, but bonus and benefit packages are an added attraction.

However, for the second year running the survey has found that private practice recruitment was the busiest and that the market for candidates with up to three years’ PQE in UK firms was the most fluid.

Banking, property and corporate lawyers were the most sought-after candidates.