Paralegal Salaries

Paralegal salaries can vary greatly with location, experience and size of the firm. The median annual paralegal salary in 2010 was about $47,000. The bottom 10% earned less than about $29,000 and the top 10% earned more than about $75,000.

Paralegal wages in industries with the highest levels of employment in May 2011 were:

Industry Employment  Percent of industry employment Hourly mean wage Annual mean wage
Legal Services 183,240 16.42 $22.98 $47,790
Federal Executive Branch (OES Designation) 14,410 0.70 $31.13 $64,750
Local Government (OES Designation) 13,120 0.24 $24.51 $50,980
State Government (OES Designation) 10,390 0.46 $21.56 $44,850
Management of Companies and Enterprises 5,910 0.31 $28.55 $59,390

Paralegal earnings in industries with the highest concentration of employment were:

Industry Employment  Percent of industry employment Hourly mean wage Annual mean wage 
Legal Services 183,240 16.42 $22.98 $47,790
Lessors of Nonfinancial Intangible Assets (except Copyrighted Works) 250 1.04 $26.59 $55,300
Other Investment Pools and Funds 290 0.74 $26.33 $54,760
Federal Executive Branch (OES Designation) 14,410 0.70 $31.13 $64,750
State Government (OES Designation) 10,390 0.46 $21.56 $44,850

Top paying industries for paralegal salaries in May 2011 were:

Industry Employment  Percent of industry employment Hourly mean wage Annual mean wage 
Petroleum and Coal Products Manufacturing 30 0.03 $39.18 $81,480
Software Publishers 360 0.14 $37.27 $77,520
Electronic Shopping and Mail-Order Houses 60 0.03 $35.26 $73,330
Oil and Gas Extraction 230 0.14 $34.19 $71,110
Computer and Peripheral Equipment Manufacturing 80 0.05 $33.40 $69,470



Annual mean paralegal salaries by state are shown below in a Bureau of Labor Statistics map.





Summarized from:
(1)  Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2012-13 Edition, Paralegals and Legal Assistants,  http://www.bls.gov/ooh/legal/paralegals-and-legal-assistants.htm
(2)  Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor,Occupational Employment and Wages, May 2011,23-2011 Paralegals and Legal Assistants,http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes232011.htm

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