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In-House Legal US Market Trends 2024

Large financial institutions conducted an exceptional amount of hiring in 2022, however, they started to take a more modest and cautious approach towards the back end of 2022 impacting growth plans in 2023.

Major plans to increase headcount were put on pause in 2023 and companies found themselves recruiting replacement roles due to the “war on talent” and salary transparency regulations in many states in the US as employees sought higher salaries elsewhere. Many Financial Services businesses had to recalibrate their salary benchmarking schedules, as they hired Attorneys on higher salaries than existing employees, in turn encouraging those employees to seek higher salaries in new roles creating a circular trend and increased hiring across the board.

The year unfolded against a backdrop of financial declines, geopolitical unrest, and a global economic downturn, creating challenges for leaders of Law Firms and In-House hiring managers. The return to the office, ongoing talent retention issues, and market segmentation added complexity, setting the stage for an organic reset in 2024.

Despite a cautious approach, specific skill sets, such as banking, derivatives, and insurance expertise, remained in high demand, particularly at the junior to mid-level. Companies sought candidates with BigLaw training, emphasizing a “plug & play” approach for a cost-friendly budget.


Entering 2024, BigLaw remuneration will continue to pressure businesses to increase base compensation and bonuses.
While parity with Private Practice may be unattainable, start-ups will enjoy flexibility in hiring, particularly at the junior to mid-level. The appeal lies in the agility of these businesses and potential accelerated career progression.
Securing top talent will depend on equity or long-term incentives, potentially slowing the pace of base salary growth in certain sectors.

For more information on our US In-House Legal Market & Compensation report, the hiring market or career opportunities, please contact  Aleea Cherry.

Aleea Cherry
Associate Director, US In-House Legal
T: +(1) 212 600 4903  E: