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Lovells has hiked its associate salaries by 19.8 per cent and introduced a bonus to reward its own trainees for making associate.
This time last year, newly qualified lawyers at the firm earned a salary of £53,000, with this figure rising to £55,000 last November. While the new sum of £63,500 represents a rise of 19.8 per cent on last May's figure. When compared with the post-November rate, the rise is 15.5 per cent.
For newly qualified lawyers who completed their training at Lovells a bonus of £1,000 has been introduced this year, effectively bringing the salary up to £64,500. This brings the firm into the middle ground when compared with magic circle firms Allen & Overy and Clifford Chance, with the former now paying newly qualifieds £64,900, while the latter pays £63,500.
In terms of trainees, first seats at Lovells now receive £36,000, compared with £31,000 last year, while the figure for second seats has risen from £35,000 to £40,000.
In addition to their base salary and newly qualified bonus, new associates at Lovells are also eligible to receive a further bonus worth 30 per cent of their salary.
Ruth Grant, London managing partner, explained that 20 per cent of this is based on chargeable hours, with lawyers having to complete at least 1,700, while the remaining 10 per cent is discretionary, based on non-chargeable activities such as business development or pro bono work.
While this system has been in place for some time it has been revamped to take account of the position of senior associate, which is new at the firm. Although details of senior associate salaries have not been released, Grant said the bonus for these lawyers can be up to 30 per cent of their base salary. This is made up of 20 per cent based on chargeable hours or 20 per cent based on discretionary activities.