BigLaw practice areas with highest compensation had lowest percentages of women, study says

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Women in the nation’s top 200 law firms are well-represented in niche practice areas. But the percentage of females is lower in practice areas that pay the most, according to a recent study.

The “middling percentage” of women in high-earning practice areas effectively means that women earn less as a group, according to the study, available here, by ALM Legal Intelligence. Law.com (sub. req.) has a summary of the findings.

The study found that women are well-represented in these niche practices: immigration (60 percent), family law (48 percent), health care (45 percent), education (45 percent), labor (44 percent) and probate (42 percent).

But their representation drops in high-earning areas, such as litigation (35 percent), taxation (31 percent), corporate (30 percent) and intellectual property (27 percent).

Jacquelyn Knight, a legal recruiter at Major, Lindsey & Africa in New York, told Law.com that women might be opting for niche practices because they think they will have more flexibility in their hours.




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