Freshfields confirms salary bands for new merit-based pay system

Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer has announced the 2012-13 salary bands for its new merit-based remuneration system for its associates.

The new ‘career milestone’ structure is due to take effect this month (May 2012), after it was revealed by the magic circle firm last year. Movement into career milestones one, two and three is typically anticipated to be at two, four and six years post-qualification experience (PQE) (26 September 2011).

The career milestone foundation, the equivalent of newly qualified solicitors (NQs), will be set at £65,000 to £72,000.

Career milestone one and two will sit at £80,000 to £92,500, and £100,000 to £107,500 respectively.

Meanwhile, the salary band for career milestone three will be from £115,000.

Each of the new career milestones mark an increase in salary to 2011-12 figures, where NQs and one, two and three PQE received £61,500, £69,500, £77,000 and £88,000 respectively (19 May 2011).

The firm, which heralded the new pay structure as a way of promoting a high performance culture and incentivising individual development, has said bonuses for 2011-12 will also be determined on individual performance and contribution.

In a statement, partner Nigel Rawding said: “We have invested in our career milestones salary structure to incentivise and reward individual development, not just years of service.

“We believe this approach will ensure we continue to attract, retain and engage the very best people who can help us to deliver exceptional service to our clients.”

Elsewhere, the trainee solicitor salary has remained unchanged for 2012-13. First-year trainees will continue to receive £39,000, while second-years will be paid £44,000.