Minimum of £23,703 in London and £21,024 elsewhere
The Law Society has recommended a 4% increase in the minimum wage for trainee lawyers in England and Wales.
Chancery Lane bigwigs say recruits undertaking a training contract or qualifying work experience (QWE) should now be paid at least £23,703 in London and £21,024 outside the capital. The new rates come into effect on September 1, 2022.
But as with all increases recommended by the Law Society, the new pay levels are completely unenforceable – meaning companies can simply ignore them – following the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) decision in 2014 to abolish the legal minimums.
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“This increase in the recommended salary for aspiring lawyers is considered appropriate at this time,” Law Society Vice President Lubna Shuja said. “We expect the rise in inflation to continue. There are a range of factors that will need to be taken into account as we discuss minimum wage policy and its increase next year, including rising cost-of-living expenses and the economic impact that had and will have on lawyers. ‘ businesses.”
Continuing, Shuja said the Society is “pleased to see that some legal firms have taken steps to offer one-time payments to lower-paid employees,” which “will help ease the pressure on young lawyers’ finances.”
A study published last year found that 20% of recruits in London and 16% of trainees in the regions were paid below the current minimums of £22,794 and £20,217.