It’s November 20, and Thanksgiving is just days away, which means that Biglaw’s full-blown bonus season is nearly upon us. In fact, bonus season should already be here. As our readers know all too well, Milbank was the first to announce bonuses on November 7, but not a single firm has announced a match yet. How could that be? Almost two full business weeks have passed. It’s all because of the pesky $10K salary increase across all class years that accompanied the compensation leader’s year-end bonus scale. At this point, all eyes are on Cravath to give associates a little something extra to be thankful for this year.
While we impatiently wait for the next bonus to be announced, let’s chat about bonuses for a moment, shall we? This is what Milbank’s bonuses look like (and they match last year’s Baker McKenzie/Cravath bonuses):
- Class of 2023 – $15,000 (pro-rated)
- Class of 2022 – $20,000
- Class of 2021 – $30,000
- Class of 2020 – $57,500
- Class of 2019 – $75,000
- Class of 2018 – $90,000
- Class of 2017 – $105,000
- Class of 2016 – $115,000
- Class of 2015 – $115,000
As we noted in our annual bonus survey report, associates weren’t really expecting any kind of special bonus on top of their regular bonuses this year, much less a raise. Maybe some insight into when bonuses are generally announced will ease associates’ minds as to when bonus — and hopefully raise! — reason will finally begin. Here’s a list of the dates when year-end market bonuses hit Biglaw since 2006, the very first year Above the Law started publishing bonus news. Take a look:
Cravath tends to stick to a schedule as far as these things are concerned, and the firm likes to announce its bonus news on Mondays (usually the last Monday in November). But with another firm in the race and a salary increase added to the mix, Cravath may have a timing surprise up its sleeve. When will the firm announce a bonus match? Will the firm also announce a salary match? Either could happen, perhaps even as soon as later this afternoon.
The best thing for associates to do while they wait is to just keep billing, just keep billing, just keep billing. In the meantime, we’ll be right here along with you, waiting on bonuses to be announced. Tick tock, Cravath….
Remember everyone, we depend on your tips to stay on top of important bonus updates, so when your firm announces or matches, please text us (646-820-8477) or email us (subject line: “[Firm Name] Bonus/Matches”). Please include the memo if available. You can take a photo of the memo and send it via text or email if you don’t want to forward the original PDF or Word file.
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Staci Zaretsky is a senior editor at Above the Law, where she’s worked since 2011. She’d love to hear from you, so please feel free to email her with any tips, questions, comments, or critiques. You can follow her on Twitter and Threads or connect with her on LinkedIn.
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