Wachtel Lipton pays bonuses as a percentage of base salary, with some variance in percentage based on year. Two years ago, associates received a bonus of around 100% base salary, not bad considering Wachtel is still paying above market salaries. Last year that dipped down to around 70%. This years, associates are receiving around 50% with junior associates receiving a few points less. Given that a first year associate is still earning $165k at Wachtel Lipton, this puts the firm up near the top for both salary and bonuses. Unlike many of its contemporaries, Wachtel has not frozen salaries either. It’s not hard to imagine that it will have a nice leg up in recruitment for a few years to come based on 2009.
Wachtel Lipton has a little over 200 attorneys practicing in New York City. Founded in 1965, it is frequently among the top firms for profit per partner.