Approximately every 2 years, NALA has conducted a national survey of paralegals. Paralegals invited to participate include members of NALA, non-members, and members of NALA affiliated associations. With many years of reports, this "look" at the paralegal profession has produced some interesting and valuable data.
The findings are divided into 4 sections: participant background; employers and practice areas; billing rates; and compensation levels.
The data is based on analysis of the responses to the National Utilization and Compensation Survey which was collected by a web based survey from mid November 2014 - mid January 2015. There were 1069 responses received and utilized for this report. 5% of the population are males; 94% are females. The average age of survey participants is 48. 64% of the participants are members of NALA; 68% have received the Certified Paralegal credential.
A summary of the findings of the 2015 survey will appear in the January/February 2015 issue of Facts & Findings. Click here to download the article.
Respondents are from a diverse geographical area. Forty-seven states, the Virgin Islands and the District of Columbia are represented by the population. Among the regions of the United States, the Southeast region was represented by 37% of the respondents; Southwest region was represented by 22%; Plains States was represented by 14%; Far West was represented by 11%; Great Lakes was represented by 8%; Rocky Mountain states were represented by 4%; and New England/Mid East was represented by 4% of the respondents. The average population of the cities represented is 584,865.
The respondents have about 20 years of legal experience; 10 years with the same employer. Most (61%) of respondents work for a private law firm, and, of those, 70% work in firms of 1-15 attorneys; 16% of the respondents work for corporations. With reference to educational backgrounds, 48% of respondents have a bachelor’s degree; 30% have an associate’s degree.
Previous surveys have asked about duties and responsibilities of paralegals. A Job Analysis study of paralegals was conducted by NALA and results released in May 2012. Click this link to review this report for detailed information about on-the-job duties and responsibilities of paralegals, and skills needed for their work. In addition, the NALA Professional Development Committee published a compilation of job descriptions in a former Career Chronicle. If you are looking for job descriptions, this is a great start. Click this link to download this article.
The 2015 National Utilization and Compensation Survey presents information concerning the work environment, duties and responsibilities, billing rates and compensation levels of paralegals. The survey analysis includes a review of current findings in comparison with findings of previous surveys. Economic data is presented in terms of such factors as size of city, size of firm, educational backgrounds, years of experience, and specialty area of practice.
Please click on any of the following sections for reports of the survey findings. The files are in pdf format. These reports are lengthy - we appreciate your patience in waiting for the download.