Thursday, August 18, 2011

Do Law Firm Salaries Track Rises in Law School Tuition?

See this posting from the always excellent Volokh Conspiracy. The correlation  between the rise in Big Law salaries for first year associates seems to track increase in tuition increases. (In rough -- and actual, non-inflation adjusted numbers, both starting salaries for First Year Associates and annual tuition have  essentially doubled since I graduated from law school almost 20 years ago.)

 The Volokh Conspiracy makes this very point, however one essential item is missing from that analysis: What about those vast majority of law students who don't go to top 10 or even top 20 law schools. To be sure, those tuition rates have climbed just as rapidly, if not more than the elite law schools. For most of the graduates of these "non-elite" schools, the notion that a First Year associate can be expected to earn $160K a year is reserved only for the very top of the class, and even then, possibly not all, especially as one delves into those Tier 3 and below schools.


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