According to PayScale, the median income of an attorney in Australia is AU$69,021 per year.
This information is based on the survey results of 413 different participants. According to the same stats, the top 90th percentile earns above A$121,000 a year while the bottom 10% earn around A$51,000 a year.
However, the main question is: does the type of field you enter make a difference in your paygrade?
Let’s look in-depth and find out which law field makes more than its other counterparts.
We’ll be covering the following law fields:
If your desired field is listed above, stick around to see the future earning prospects in the field you choose.
The law field with the highest median salary is a corporate, in-house senior lawyer in Australia. They’re paid a median salary of around A$122,000 a year.
The top percentile (90%) earns above A$230,000 a year, while the bottom 10% earn A$67,000 a year.
An in-house senior lawyer is responsible for developing and implementing legal strategies for their company. They also take care of legal problems that the company might face.
An in-house lawyer’s job can be very demanding. Lawyers usually work between 9 to 10 hours a day, which is significantly longer than salaried employees’ work schedules. Nonetheless, they also enjoy a higher pay grade.
The difference between a lawyer and an attorney is that a lawyer is anyone who practices law without necessarily having a Juris degree. Lawyers can be consultants or advisors, tasked to give legal advice to clients.
On the other hand, an attorney is someone who both studied law and practices it in court while adhering to the code of ethics. They must also pass the bar exam and have obtained their Juris program diploma.
Criminal lawyers get paid around A$70,000/year on average. The top 90th percentile of criminal lawyers gets paid A$118,000/year, while the bottom 10% of them get paid A$50,000/year.
Criminal lawyers are responsible for representing their clients’ cases in court if the latter is accused of breaking a law.
For example, if you’re charged with a DUI, it would be your criminal lawyer’s duty to defend you from the case that might result in you going to jail.
Immigration lawyers get paid A$66,000/year on average. The top 90th percentile of immigration lawyers gets paid A$93,000/year, while the bottom 10% of them get paid A$45,000/year.
Immigration lawyers are involved in getting green cards and visas for their clients, as well as administrative requirements and immigration matters their clients may have.
IP lawyers get paid A$95,000/year on average. The top 90th percentile of IP lawyers gets paid A$155,000/year, while the bottom 10% of them get paid A$63,000/year.
Intellectual Property lawyers focus on maintaining and protecting their clients’ patents, trademarks, copyrights, and other forms of intellectual property (IP).
They also act as consultants or advisors to clients regarding IP matters.
Trial lawyers get paid A$91,000/year on average. The top 90th percentile of trial lawyers gets paid A$167,000/year, while the bottom 10% of them get paid A$49,000/year.
Trial lawyers are in-court attorneys who represent their client’s cases.
For example, if there is a court case involving your company and you need an attorney to represent you, that would be the role of a trial lawyer. They’re responsible for handling their client’s cases in court litigation, both civil and criminal.
Divorce lawyers get paid A$71,000/year on average. The top 90th percentile of divorce lawyers gets paid A$118,000/year, while the bottom 10% of them get paid A$57,000/year.
Divorce lawyers are responsible for representing their clients in all divorce matters. They also represent their clients’ best interests as they resolve issues such as property division, child custody and support, alimony, and other related strands.
Regulatory lawyers get paid A$93,000/year on average. The top 90th percentile of regulatory lawyers gets paid A$114,000/year, while the bottom 10% of them get paid A$64,000/year.
Regulatory lawyers represent their clients from federal, state, and local governments.
They’re tasked to handle different issues such as environmental law, tax matters, food and drug violations, antitrust concerns, among other concerns.
Sports lawyers get paid A$88,000/year on average. The top 90th percentile of sports lawyers gets paid A$95,000/year, while the bottom 10% of them get paid A$72,000/year.
Sports lawyers are involved in representing their clients when they are accused or charged with an infraction. Their client base consists of governing bodies, athletes, industry boards, teams, leagues, broadcasters, and other sports organizations.
Despite the statistics, it isn’t always the money and prestige that drive people to pursue a certain career. If you want to be a lawyer, make sure it’s your passion and vocation, not just because you think lawyers make money with their law firms.
Nonetheless, these are the top-paying jobs for lawyers in Australia, according to payscale.com.