RPC scraps NQ salary for merit-based system

Remuneration – always among the trickiest topics and one that tends to be contentious for any lawyer from their very first day in the office.

Are trainee lawyers paid too much? Is £100,000 for a newly qualified (NQ) lawyer – a la Davis Polk – way over the odds? Since 2008 most firms have been forensic about remuneration, particularly in relation to partners. It’s now almost difficult to recall that for most firms the move to a meritocratic pay structure was originally met with cynicism.

Today, the lockstep partnership structure remains largely the preserve of the magic circle. But what about NQs and trainees? RPC has today told its lawyers that it is planning to scrap the set salary for those on the bottom rung of the ladder in favour of a merit-based system.

The firm is hoping to spark a revolution. For RPC, the current model is broken. This is an attempt to fix it, and a bold one at that.

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