Dechert joins associate salary war

Dechert has become the latest firm to announce new pay bands for its trainees and newly qualified (NQ) lawyers.

The US firm has hiked its first-year trainee salaries from 32,000 to 36,000 and second-year pay from 37,000 to 41,000. Decherts original plan was to raise first-year trainee salaries to 35,000 but the firm decided to go a little bit higher to keep up with rival firms. The new salaries will come into effect from 1 October 2007.

Dechert operates a slightly different pay structure for its NQ solicitors and has a salary band that currently ranges from 56,000 to 66,000. This scale will be increased from 63,000 to 72,500 from October.

Dechert is battling to attract the cream of the graduate population on two fronts. As exclusively reported in the May issue of Lawyer 2B magazine, the firm stunned City rivals with a whopping 42.9 per cent hike in the LPC maintenance grants it pays to its future trainees. The firm currently pays its LPC students the market average of 7,000 but this amount will be boosted to 10,000 for students starting the LPC in September 2008.

Dechert typically hires 15 trainees per year.