Currently, the majority of lawyers work in private and corporate legal offices, while others work for local, state, and federal governments. The U.S. Department of Labor projects that the job prospects for attorneys is expected to rise 10% between 2012-2022. Salary information reported for full-time jobs lasting at least a year saw the median salaries of lawyers rise from $60,000 for the class of 2011 to $61,245 for the class of 2012.
According to the National Association for Law Placement, Inc. (NALP), the median law firm salary was reported to be $90,000 in 2012, a $5,000 increase from the $85,000 median salary for the previous year. Median earnings for the class of 2012 rose for the first time in 5 years based largely on the additional large law firm jobs that were secured.
While the majority of law graduates accept traditional jobs in large firms or private practices, many graduates choose to work in hundreds of other fields unrelated to law. Careers outside law include professional counseling or consulting, negotiation and conflict resolution, development agencies, politics, business, entrepreneurship, academia, journalism, public interest advocacy, banking and finance, and many more. In the past 20 years, the percentage of employed law school graduates taking jobs in business industries has nearly doubled, with the same percentage reaching the tripling point in the two most recent years.
For more legal jobs information, students and graduates are encourage to take advantage of career services at their designed schools, as well as NALP.
Additional resources include:
ABA Legal Career Central
Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Outlook Handbook: Lawyers