Jump to content
Panda

Ottawa Summer Student Salary Numbers

Recommended Posts

I've been trying to find out what's the average salary that a 2nd year summer law student in Ottawa (Big vs. medium vs. small firm) makes a week and would appreciate if someone can comment. Thanks in advance!

Edited by Panda

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Articling students at Gowlings make $48 500/year, so I imagine summer students would be in somewhere in the range of $8 000 - 10 000, if I had to guess.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I just wanted to bump this. Big firms seem to pay summer and articling students in $45-48k range. Does anyone have insight with respect to salaries at smaller or boutique firms (ex. Brazeau Seller, Mann, Conway, Labarge Weinstein, Kelly Santini, etc.)? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Interesting, I assumed big firms in Ottawa would be paying more. That's comparable to the maritimes. Is there a big jump for associates or no?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Interesting, I assumed big firms in Ottawa would be paying more. That's comparable to the maritimes. Is there a big jump for associates or no?

 

I think Gowlings starts at 70k, so I assume most large firms would be similar. 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Unless I am mistaken, Borden Ladner Gervais starts at around $75,000 for a first-year associate. I doubt some other firm offers more than that.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Unless I am mistaken, Borden Ladner Gervais starts at around $75,000 for a first-year associate. I doubt some other firm offers more than that.

http://www.nalpcanada.com/employer_profile?FormID=2333&QuestionTabID=46&SearchCondJSON=%7B%22SearchCity%22%3A%22ottawa%22%7D

 

It literally took me 5 seconds to disprove that. 

Edited by QuincyWagstaff
  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That's true, but if you look at the lawyers at Stikeman, I think the youngest is a 2010 grad. They don't seem to be hiring students back as associates.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

For comparison, I articled at a small firm in Ottawa (9 lawyers) and the salary in 2012 was $36,000.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

For comparison, I articled at a small firm in Ottawa (9 lawyers) and the salary in 2012 was $36,000.

 

That's awful. If the firm is downtown and you want to live close to work, money is going to be extremely tight after licensing fees (which I am assuming a small firm won't pay), buying a suit or two, etc. Articling has a handful of expenses associated with it. Want to pay off some debt in the process after spending 100k on your law degree? LOL better luck next time. I know Ottawa is a much smaller market than Toronto so you shouldn't expect similar salaries, but I don't know how firms there get away paying 35k given the cost of living. No wonder they are paranoid about people bolting to Toronto at the first chance. Why wouldn't you, if nothing was tying you to the city like family? Not everyone can work at Gowlings....

Edited by happydude

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

Is it possible that is a mistake?

 

Gowlings pays 73k first year (perhaps IP first year associates make more) and as I understand they're by far the biggest firm in Ottawa (not that bigger always means higher salary)

 

http://www.nalpcanada.com/employer_profile?FormID=2362&QuestionTabID=46&SearchCondJSON={%22SearchCity%22%3A%22ottawa%22%2C%22SearchEmployerName%22%3A%22gowling%22}

 

Also find it odd that Stikeman-Toronto info isn't provided. 90K seems high for first year Ottawa.

Edited by Lloyd Christmas

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That's awful. If the firm is downtown and you want to live close to work, money is going to be extremely tight after licensing fees (which I am assuming a small firm won't pay), buying a suit or two, etc. Articling has a handful of expenses associated with it. Want to pay off some debt in the process after spending 100k on your law degree? LOL better luck next time. I know Ottawa is a much smaller market than Toronto so you shouldn't expect similar salaries, but I don't know how firms there get away paying 35k given the cost of living. No wonder they are paranoid about people bolting to Toronto at the first chance. Why wouldn't you, if nothing was tying you to the city like family? Not everyone can work at Gowlings....

 

I know of small firms in Toronto paying 45k. There is a huge pay difference between large and small firm, with usually a quality of life improvement in the latter.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

For comparison, I articled at a small firm in Ottawa (9 lawyers) and the salary in 2012 was $36,000.

 

Assuming you were hired back or otherwise know, what did they pay first year associates? 

 

As an aside, it seems kind of strange that the disparity in salaries between large and small firms is so much smaller in Ottawa - assuming Nutty is right and large firms are paying in the $45,000 range, that's less than a $10,000 difference. Compare that to large Toronto firms paying $75,000 and, as artsy notes, small firms paying in the $45,000 range (I have personally seen firms go as low as $30,000 in Toronto and that doesn't include firms offering to pay in 'monthly stipends', metro passes and experience, of which the LSUC registry is chock full of). Seems like a shitty business move on the part of the large Ottawa firms but what do I know. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That's awful. If the firm is downtown and you want to live close to work, money is going to be extremely tight after licensing fees (which I am assuming a small firm won't pay), buying a suit or two, etc. Articling has a handful of expenses associated with it. Want to pay off some debt in the process after spending 100k on your law degree? LOL better luck next time. I know Ottawa is a much smaller market than Toronto so you shouldn't expect similar salaries, but I don't know how firms there get away paying 35k given the cost of living. No wonder they are paranoid about people bolting to Toronto at the first chance. Why wouldn't you, if nothing was tying you to the city like family? Not everyone can work at Gowlings....

 

It wasn't great. But I was in a unique situation- I'm from Ottawa, and always planned to go back after law school (Osgoode). 2L summer I worked for the Ontario government in Toronto, and was hired back for articling. March of 3L, I received a call that "due to budget cuts," my department would no longer be able to hire an articling student for the year. I had to scramble (while studying for final exams) to find something, anything! The firm I was hired with advertised in March, did interviews at the beginning of April (I went to Ottawa twice for interviews, in between my exams), and I started articling at the end of April. Wrote my bar exams in June, with just the week off for each exam. Yes, It sucked. The pay wasn't great. But I was lucky enough to come back from a very bad situation.

 

Assuming you were hired back or otherwise know, what did they pay first year associates? 

 

As an aside, it seems kind of strange that the disparity in salaries between large and small firms is so much smaller in Ottawa - assuming Nutty is right and large firms are paying in the $45,000 range, that's less than a $10,000 difference. Compare that to large Toronto firms paying $75,000 and, as artsy notes, small firms paying in the $45,000 range (I have personally seen firms go as low as $30,000 in Toronto and that doesn't include firms offering to pay in 'monthly stipends', metro passes and experience, of which the LSUC registry is chock full of). Seems like a shitty business move on the part of the large Ottawa firms but what do I know. 

 

I wasn't hired back, although I knew going into articling that they would not be able to hire another associate when I was finished articling. See above for reasons why I took the job anyway. I think the junior associates were making in the $70,000 range (but that's just a guess based on offhand comments).

 

Quality of life was indeed much better- I worked 9-5. I may have worked late (say until 8pm?) 2-3 days the entire year. I never once came into work on a weekend.  After articling was finished, I went back to government and am now very happy :)

 

Edit: typo

Edited by codyross
  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Assuming you were hired back or otherwise know, what did they pay first year associates? 

 

As an aside, it seems kind of strange that the disparity in salaries between large and small firms is so much smaller in Ottawa - assuming Nutty is right and large firms are paying in the $45,000 range, that's less than a $10,000 difference. Compare that to large Toronto firms paying $75,000 and, as artsy notes, small firms paying in the $45,000 range (I have personally seen firms go as low as $30,000 in Toronto and that doesn't include firms offering to pay in 'monthly stipends', metro passes and experience, of which the LSUC registry is chock full of). Seems like a shitty business move on the part of the large Ottawa firms but what do I know. 

 

Working at a big firm obviously has substantial perks. You get licensing fees paid, free gym memberships, fancy dinners, easier time finding work after, etc. but actual compensation at large Ottawa firms is a shockingly raw deal for most articling students when compared to alternatives with (presumably) better work-life balance in the Ottawa market. I know of several 3-6 lawyer firms that are actually on parity with some of the bigger firms in terms of weekly salary, and there are also government articling positions that actually pay significantly more than any big firm, and you only work 37.5 hours/week. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Every firm that participated in OCI's pays between $45,000-$48,000 per annum, so about 850$ a week. 

I work at a smaller firm and I'm making the same salary as Gowlings students, so the whole idea that the biggest firms pay the most is not entirely accurate. 

 

With regards to non-OCI firms, based on anecdotal evidence, you'll be in $35,000 range. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I feel like I'm getting hung up on the numbers but it's helpful to plan!

 

Does anyone have updated information on what would be:

 

a) summer/articling salaries at the main firms?

b) 1-5 years in?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.



×
×
  • Create New...