CMS Cameron McKenna has raised its trainee and newly-qualified (NQ) salaries by an average of three per cent as it bids to keep pace with the magic circle.
First year trainee solicitors will now receive £37,500, an increase of 2.7 per cent on last year’s £36,000. Second year trainee salaries rose by 3.8 per cent from £40,000 to £41,500 and NQ rates leapt by 3.1 per cent to £66,000.
Managing partner Duncan Weston said: “The policy has been to try and align ourselves with the largest law firms in London.
“We are keen that, having had a successful year, we are right up there with the biggest firms paying the same rates.”
First year trainees at Camerons now earn more on average than almost all their magic circle counterparts, except those at Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer where the average rate is £39,000. Its NQ salaries were only bettered by Linklaters’ £66,600.
Camerons is also set to pay all staff a firmwide bonus of five per cent of salary.
Last year, NQ lawyers at the firm saw salaries upped by 18.5 per cent but it has followed the market with more cautious increases this year.
The firm recently announced strong financial results, with its average profit per equity partner (PEP) figure rising by 30 per cent to £650,000 and turnover growing by 19 per cent to £235m.
The firm will announce salaries for those with one, two and three years’ post qualification experience in July.