How Much Do Lawyers Make? Three Answers That Might Surprise You

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Did you know that there are over a million licensed lawyers in the US? Not all licensed attorneys are practicing, but this is still a fairly large number. Many people have questions about the basics of the typical lawyer lifestyle. Whether you are considering going into law, or are just plain curious, these statistics will either confirm your suspicions, or potentially surprise you.

1. How much money do lawyers make?

Not surprisingly, this number varies. On average, however, lawyers make about 55 dollars an hour, and 113,000 dollars per year. The top 10 percent earn more than 166,000, while the bottom 10 percent earn less than 54,000. Legal, non attorney occupations such as paralegals earn an average of 75,000 dollars a year.

2. Do lawyers work long hours?

Lawyer working hours vary widely, but many work 50 hours a week on a 9 to 7 schedule. Some lawyers work 35 hours one week, then 80 when a big case comes in. The number of hours a lawyer works is often affected by what area of law they are involved in, with litigation attorneys often working the dreaded 12 to 13 hour days. It would be fair to say that many lawyers do work fairly long hours compared to the average white collar job.

3. Where do lawyers work?

In both the private and public sectors. There are a wide variety of lawyer types, and each might work in a different environment. Criminal law attorneys, for example, work for the government and are frequently in court rooms. Tax lawyers, on the other hand, work from their office for corporations and individuals, and rarely enter a court room. 18 percent of lawyers work for the government. For individuals interested in finding attorney openings, legal search firms can be helpful. Legal search firms goes through all firms and establishes which ones are accepting applications for new lawyers.

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