Regulator keeps lid on minimum trainee pay

The Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) has frozen minimum wages for trainee solicitors for the third year running.

The regulator announced today that trainee salary levels in Central London would once again remain static at £18,590 until August 2012, while the recommended salary for trainees in the capital is also staying put at £19,040.

The news arrives despite some City law firms confirming nominal increases in trainee and associate salaries of around £1,000.

These included magic circle firms Clifford Chance and Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, which announced small hikes in associate salaries and Hogan Lovells, CMS Cameron McKenna, Ashurst and Nabarro, which boosted trainee salaries (read more).

US law firms Weil Gotshal & Manges and Shearman & Sterling also announced increases in their pay rates, with newly qualified salaries now sitting at £97,000 and £78,000 respectively (read more).

But magic circle rivals Allen & Overy and Linklaters have both frozen bands at 2010-11 levels for the new financial year, but will allow their lawyers to pass through the bands as before (full story).

The SRA has also confirmed that the minimum salary for trainees outside London will continue to sit at £16,650. The recommended salary will also remain at £16,940.