How much do lawyers earn? The folks at have gone through the data and created this infographic showing earnings by practice areas. The data comes from the American Bar Association, as well as Glassdoor,, LawyerEdu, and the National Association for Law Placement.

Topping the chart are IP attorneys, who earn an average of $155,037. The lowest-paid practice area is immigration, where attorneys earn an average of $62,250.

It is not clear how current these numbers are. The ABA’s compilation of statistics on lawyers’ salaries includes data from as far back as 2003 and the NALP numbers are from 2011. That said, these figures appear to be the most recent data available on lawyers’ earnings.


  • Boraxo1

    This “survey” is borderline fraudulent – maybe a tactic by employers to keep salary levels down. every lawyer I know makes more than the amounts listed. In fact, many lawyers from top law schools make more than these amounts during their first year of employment. I would not waste 10 seconds on this graphic.

  • Bob, does this data cover the entire spectrum of lawyers’ situations, i.e., from solos to BigLaw and everywhere in between? If so, such broad ranges would make averages of marginal representative value. At one end of the spectrum, you have AmLaw 50 firms paying 1Ls $160k, and at the other perhaps a newly-minted solo lawyer struggling to get established making, say, $40k. The average of those two, $100k, represents neither. A more useful metric would be the median earnings, which would moderate the extremes at either end.

    • Bob Ambrogi

      The sources are listed above. It appears to cover the entire spectrum.