A closer look at associate pay

Monday, April 26, 2010; 15

Many large law firms have changed the way associates advance and get paid. Here is a sample of what others are doing.

Drinker Biddle May 2009. Announced a six-month training program for incoming associates, who will be billed out at lower rates.

Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe July 2009. Introduced a plan for three performance-based tiers for 2010. Entry-level salaries remain at market rates and increases to associate compensation are merit-based.

DLA Piper December 2009. Established three competency-based levels for associates; withholds a portion of compensation until end-of-year reviews. A plan to lower base salaries was later reversed.

Sources: Wall Street Journal, American Lawyer Media, Above the Law

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