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Lawyer Salary Information

The salary statistics of lawyers are shown in Table 1. In the next few tables we compare the average salaries of lawyers within different industry sectors and in the 50 states of the United States. The lawyers annual salary statistics are from the national compensation survey conducted by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics in 2016 and published in April 2017 [1].

Table 1. Lawyer Salary in the United States

Percentile BracketAverage Annual Salary
10th Percentile Wage
$56,910
25th Percentile Wage
$77,580
50th Percentile Wage
$118,160
75th Percentile Wage
$176,580
90th Percentile Wage
No Data

Table 1 shows the average annual salary for lawyers. The average annual salary for the 75th percentile (the top 25 percent of the highest paid) is $176,580. The median annual salary (50th percentile) is $118,160. The average annual salary for the bottom 10 percent is $56,910. Note that in the United States, the annual salary of the 75th percentile (the top 25 percent of the highest paid) is almost 210% higher than that of the bottom 10 percent.

Salary Trend (2012 to 2016)

The following table and chart show the trend of the median salary of lawyers from 2012 to 2016.

YearMedian SalaryYearly Growth4-Year Growth
2016118,1601.98%3.92%
2015115,8200.73%-
2014114,9700.58%-
2013114,3000.67%-
2012113,530--

Table 2. Lawyer Salary by Industry Sector

The average salaries of lawyers in 17 major industry sectors are shown in Table 2. We note that the salaries vary considerably within different industry sectors. The highest paying industry sector for lawyers occupations is the management of companies and enterprises sector with an annual salary $164,830. The lowest paying sector is the retail trade sector (annual salary $88,070).

Industry Sector Median Annual Salary
Management of Companies and Enterprises
$164,830
Mining
$164,740
Information
$161,770
Manufacturing
$160,900
Utilities
$157,780
Arts, Entertainment, and Recreation
$150,280
Finance and Insurance
$146,000
Transportation and Warehousing
$143,620
Real Estate and Rental and Leasing
$142,010
Wholesale Trade
$135,630
Construction
$134,900
Educational Services
$127,680
Professional, Scientific, and Technical Services
$119,580
Federal, State, and Local Government
$103,040
Other Services (except Federal, State, and Local Government)
$102,690
Health Care and Social Assistance
$96,820
Retail Trade
$88,070

Table 3. Median Annual Wage of Lawyers by States

From the above tables we note that not only lawyers salaries vary considerably based on one's education and experience, and the industry sectors, they also change considerably from state to state. In the following table we compare the median salary of lawyers in all 50 states of the United States. We note that the median annual salaries range from $63,160 to $160,290. The highest paying state for lawyers is District of Columbia with a median annual salary of $160,290. The lowest paying state is Puerto Rico with a median annual salary of $63,160. For more salary information of lawyers profession in a specific state, use the links in the table.

State Name Median Annual Salary
District of Columbia
$160,290
California
$144,080
New York
$140,200
Massachusetts
$138,040
Delaware
$137,890
Texas
$126,130
Virginia
$126,110
Connecticut
$125,690
New Jersey
$124,010
Colorado
$118,000
Nevada
$117,200
Pennsylvania
$115,220
Alaska
$114,990
Rhode Island
$114,770
Minnesota
$114,090
North Carolina
$113,430
Washington
$111,170
Virgin Islands
$109,450
Illinois
$105,220
Georgia
$104,950
Tennessee
$102,880
Arizona
$102,390
Maryland
$102,270
Oregon
$101,940
Alabama
$101,470
Florida
$99,940
Mississippi
$98,150
New Hampshire
$97,810
Utah
$95,980
Michigan
$95,860
Ohio
$95,700
Oklahoma
$94,890
Missouri
$93,950
Hawaii
$92,890
Wisconsin
$91,790
Vermont
$90,910
Indiana
$90,770
Louisiana
$90,040
Wyoming
$89,370
Iowa
$89,330
West Virginia
$86,490
North Dakota
$86,220
Guam
$85,800
Arkansas
$84,080
Maine
$84,030
New Mexico
$80,910
Nebraska
$80,520
South Carolina
$80,060
Kansas
$78,300
South Dakota
$78,290
Idaho
$75,220
Kentucky
$73,130
Montana
$70,840
Puerto Rico
$63,160


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Highest paying states for lawyers

Highest paying cities for lawyers

Highest paying industries for lawyers.