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Salary of Legal Occupations

The average annual salary of legal occupations is shown in Table 1. Table 2 compares the median salaries across all legal occupations in the United States. The legal occupations salary statistics are from the national compensation survey published by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) in April 2018 [1].

Table 1. Salary of Legal Occupations in the United States (2017 Survey)

Percentile BracketAverage Annual Salary
10th Percentile Wage
$36,970
25th Percentile Wage
$52,340
50th Percentile Wage
$80,080
75th Percentile Wage
$140,170
90th Percentile Wage
No Data

Table 1 shows the average annual salary for legal occupations. The salary is shown in 5 percentile scales. The average annual salary for the 75th percentile (the top 25 percent of the highest paid) legal occupations is $140,170. The median annual salary is $80,080. The average annual salary for the bottom 10 percent is $36,970.

Salary Trend (2012 to 2017)

The table and chart below show the trend of the median salary of legal occupations from 2012 to 2017.

YearMedian SalaryYearly Growth5-Year Growth
2017
$80,080
0.54% 6.01%
2016
$79,650
1.86% -
2015
$78,170
1.68% -
2014
$76,860
0.99% -
2013
$76,100
1.09% -
2012
$75,270
- -

Table 2. Compare Salaries of All Legal Occupations (2017 Survey)

Table 2 shows the median annual wage for each Legal Occupations in the United States. Note that the median annual salaries vary considerably among legal professions, ranging from $46,850 to $133,840. The highest-paid legal occupations are judges, magistrate judges, and magistrates with a median annual salary of $133,840. The lowest-paid legal occupations in the United States are title examiners, abstractors, and searchers with a median annual salary of $46,850. For more salary information about a specific legal profession, use the links in the table.

Occupation Group Median Annual Salary
Judges, Magistrate Judges, and Magistrates
$133,840
Lawyers
$119,250
Lawyers and Judicial Law Clerks
$117,020
Lawyers, Judges, and Related Workers
$116,210
Judges, Magistrates, and Other Judicial Workers
$105,840
Administrative Law Judges, Adjudicators, and Hearing Officers
$94,790
Arbitrators, Mediators, and Conciliators
$60,670
Other Legal Support Workers
$56,120
Court Reporters
$55,120
Judicial Law Clerks
$51,330
Miscellaneous Legal Support Workers
$51,290
Legal Support Workers
$50,630
Paralegals and Legal Assistants
$50,410
Title Examiners, Abstractors, and Searchers
$46,850