Locum Services for Law Firms and In House Legal Departments

Locum Hourly Rates

Hourly Rates

Locum hourly rate payment varies widely according to the demand, length of assignment, level of experience and advance notice available. NB: These rates are intended as a guide only. Hourly rates can vary according to the location, duration and level of expertise.

Rates slowly increased from 2011 to 2016, but are now in decline generally for certain areas due mainly to variations in supply and demand.

May 2018 Locum Rates

Residential Conveyancing Locum Solicitors – 1-5 years PQE, £30 per hour (no variation for central London).
Conveyancing Locum Solicitors & ILEX – 5-35 years PQE, handling all levels of conveyancing including managing a department – £30-35 per hour, including central London.
Commercial Property Solicitors – 1-40 years PQE – £35-50 per hour.
Wills & Probate Solicitors and Legal Executives – 3-35 years PQE – £35-50 per hour, going up to £55 per hour.
Family Solicitors – 4-40 years PQE – £30-35 per hour.
Civil Litigation Solicitors and ILEX– 1-35 years PQE. £28-35 per hour. These rates cover mainstream litigation.
Commercial Litigation Solicitors – 3+ years PQE – £35-50 per hour.
Company Commercial Solicitors – 3+ years PQE – £35-70 per hour.
Employment Solicitors – 3+ years PQE – £28-35 per hour (minimal amounts of work).
Personal Injury and Clinical Negligence – 3+ years PQE – £20-£35 per hour.
In House Legal Department Rates: 0-3 years PQE – £25-35 per hour (wide range due to variables in legal department work), 3+ years PQE – £30-80 per hour (very wide range due to the nature of in house work).

Local authority rates: write some numbers between 24 and 65 on a piece of paper, close your eyes and point at one. Local authority rates seem to be calculated by total randomness and they remain one of the wonders of the recruitment world. Add in the complexities of IR35 and the joys of umbrella companies and this really is a complete minefield! Rates do seem to fall within the £35-55 per hour range at the moment.

March 2018 Locum Rates

Rates are now starting to go up as we get into Spring. Bookings for the summer are at summer rates. Up to £35 per hour in Conveyancing is still the norm for most locums, although the current competitive level for longer term assignments are £30.

Residential Conveyancing Locum Solicitors – 1-5 years PQE, £30 per hour (no variation for central London).
Conveyancing Locum Solicitors & ILEX – 5-35 years PQE, handling all levels of conveyancing including managing a department – £30-35 per hour, including central London.
Commercial Property Solicitors – 1-40 years PQE – £35-50 per hour.
Wills & Probate Solicitors and Legal Executives – 3-35 years PQE – £35-50 per hour, going up to £55 per hour.
Family Solicitors – 4-40 years PQE – £30-35 per hour.
Civil Litigation Solicitors and ILEX– 1-35 years PQE. £28-35 per hour. These rates cover mainstream litigation.
Commercial Litigation Solicitors – 3+ years PQE – £35-50 per hour.
Company Commercial Solicitors – 3+ years PQE – £35-70 per hour.
Employment Solicitors – 3+ years PQE – £24-30 per hour (minimal amounts of work).
Personal Injury and Clinical Negligence – 3+ years PQE – £18-£35 per hour.
In House Legal Department Rates: 0-3 years PQE – £25-35 per hour (wide range due to variables in legal department work), 3+ years PQE – £30-80 per hour (very wide range due to the nature of in house work).
Local authority rates: write some numbers between 24 and 65 on a piece of paper, close your eyes and point at one. Local authority rates seem to be calculated by total randomness and they remain one of the wonders of the recruitment world. Since 2017 you can also add in IR35 and the joys of umbrella companies..

NB all rates exclude agency fees. The rates are for self-employed locums billing firms directly on a weekly basis. We have over 11,000 lawyers registered with us. To request CVs for a specific vacancy please register your vacancy using the link at the top of this email or simply reply.

January 2018 Locum Rates

Rates are now at their lowest levels, but will start to go up as we get into Spring. Bookings for the summer are at summer rates. Up to £35 per hour in Conveyancing is still the norm for most locums, although the current competitive level for longer term assignments are £30.

Residential Conveyancing Locum Solicitors – 1-5 years PQE, £30 per hour (no variation for central London).
Conveyancing Locum Solicitors & ILEX – 5-35 years PQE, handling all levels of conveyancing including managing a department – £30-35 per hour, including central London.
Commercial Property Solicitors – 1-40 years PQE – £35-50 per hour.
Wills & Probate Solicitors and Legal Executives – 3-35 years PQE – £35-50 per hour, going up to £55 per hour.
Family Solicitors – 4-40 years PQE – £30-34 per hour. Much harder to find these days.
Civil Litigation Solicitors and ILEX– 1-35 years PQE. £28-35 per hour. These rates cover mainstream litigation.
Commercial Litigation Solicitors – 3+ years PQE – £35-50 per hour. Occasionally this is higher.
Company Commercial Solicitors – 3+ years PQE – £35-70 per hour.
Employment Solicitors – 3+ years PQE – £24-30 per hour (minimal amounts of work).
Personal Injury and Clinical Negligence – 3+ years PQE – £18-£35 per hour. Work very sporadic.
In House Legal Department Rates: 0-3 years PQE – £25-35 per hour (wide range due to variables in legal department work), 3+ years PQE – £30-80 per hour (very wide range due to the nature of in house work).
Local authority rates: write some numbers between 24 and 65 on a piece of paper, close your eyes and point at one. Local authority rates seem to be calculated by total randomness and they remain one of the wonders of the recruitment world. Since 2017 you can also add in IR35 and the joys of umbrella companies..

NB all rates exclude agency fees. The rates are for self-employed locums billing firms directly on a weekly basis.

2017 Private Practice Law Firm Locum Rates:

  • Residential Conveyancing Locum Solicitors – 1-5 years PQE, £25-30 per hour (no variation for central London).
  • Conveyancing Locum Solicitors & ILEX – 5-35 years PQE, handling all levels of conveyancing including managing a department – £25-£35 per hour, including central London.
  • Commercial Property Solicitors – 1-40 years PQE – £30-45 per hour.
  • Wills & Probate Solicitors and Legal Executives – 3-35 years PQE – £30-45 per hour – usually the minimum is £35.
  • Family Solicitors – 4-40 years PQE – £22-32 per hour. Occasionally this goes up to £35 per hour for short notice or a few days cover.
  • Civil Litigation Solicitors and ILEX– 1-35 years PQE. £25-35 per hour. These rates cover mainstream litigation – eg county court and small claims matters.
  • Commercial Litigation Solicitors – 3+ years PQE – £35-50 per hour. Occasionally this is higher.
  • Company Commercial Solicitors – 3+ years PQE – £35-70 per hour.
  • Employment Solicitors – 3+ years PQE – difficult to give a range this year due to the lack of work generally in this field.
  • Personal Injury and Clinical Negligence – 3+ years PQE – £18-£30 per hour. Work very sporadic.

2017 In House Legal Department Rates:

  • 0-3 years PQE – £22-32 per hour (wide range due to variables in legal department work)
  • 3+ years PQE – £30-75 per hour (very wide range due to the nature of in house work and companies concerned..).

We have included the main areas of work covered by Interim Lawyers, although we have locums in other fields of law as well – eg Construction, Crime, Local Authority, Immigration, Corporate Finance, M&A, Projects, Shipping Law etc..

Local authority rates are not included above. We find that if local authorities come to us it is because they have not been able to recruit via the outsourced recruitment processor they are contracted with (known as RPOs). It also means that as a result they have already contacted most of the locums in the UK who do local authority work via their contracted agencies but decided they are too expensive and want to try alternatives. Naturally this tends to be virtually impossible because all the locums qualified to do the role are already aware of it! We look forward to the day when local authorities come back onto the market individually and start to pay reasonable rates again..

Hourly Rate, Weekly Rate and Salary Equivalents:
£20 per hour = £750 per week or £36,000 per annum (assuming a 7.5 hour day and a 48 week year).
£25 per hour = £937.50 per week or £45,000 per annum.
£30 per hour = £1,125 per week or £54,000 per annum.