The Salary of a Corporate Finance Lawyer

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At some time during its business operations, every company is going to need a lawyer. Many companies, realizing this, keep lawyers on staff to verify that the business' practices are legal. These corporate finance lawyers keep a close watch on a company's transactions, contracts and other agreements to ensure that they stick to the law.

Corporate Lawyer Identification

  • A corporate finance lawyer handles the legal aspects of a company's transactions and contracts. It is the duty of a corporate finance lawyer to ensure that none of a company's transactions conflict with laws on the local, state or federal level. To do this, a corporate finance lawyer must be expert in a variety of laws, including tax laws, contract laws and the laws governing intellectual property rights.

Corporate Lawyer Salaries

  • According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, lawyers across all disciplines receive an average salary of $110,590 each year as of 2008. Lawyers who specialize in corporate law, including the management of companies and enterprises, earn considerably more. Corporate lawyers earn an average of $145,770 a year. For recent graduates entering the field, the average salary is $68,500 for all law disciplines. For the same graduates entering the corporate law profession, the average salary is $69,100.

Top Paying States

  • A lawyer's salary can vary significantly from the mean depending on where he or she practices. The top five highest paying states (or areas) for lawyers, according to the BLS, are Washington, D.C., California, Delaware, New York and Connecticut. On average, D.C. lawyers are paid $162,830 annually and California lawyers are paid $155,740 annually. Delaware, New York and Connecticut lawyers are paid on average $151,750, $150,510 and $138,420, respectively.

Other Considerations

  • While the demand for lawyers and the growth of the profession are good, the nature of the work is changing somewhat. With a glut of law school graduates, many newly-minted lawyers are finding themselves early on working temporarily as attorneys on a need-based basis. This can affect salary in the short term. Specializing in corporate finance law may see a lawyer pull down better salaries, but that only applies to full-time work.

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