A corporate lawyer is a trained professional that has the technical know-how to advise, consult, litigate, and also indulge in every necessary legal requirement to ensure the rights and obligations of their clients.
The average corporate lawyer salary in South Africa is R 594 520 per annum and is reasonably higher than the national average in the country. This is an indication that many corporate lawyers in different parts of the country are earning reasonably well, befitting the sophisticated status of their profession.
Corporate Lawyer Salary In South Africa
The average corporate lawyer in South Africa makes around R 594 520 per year via their legal expertise. It should be noted that this is simply average, as it may be higher or slightly lower.
Different factors will determine what you earn as a corporate lawyer. Just like we see in several other careers, a well-experienced corporate lawyer will tend to earn more money than a fresh one on the block.
How Much Does Corporate Lawyers Earn In South Africa Monthly
The average corporate lawyer monthly salary in South Africa is around R 49 500. This is a salary many corporate lawyers in the country can relate to.
We should note that this is merely an average figure. It means, some corporate lawyers are earning much more than this each month, and some are not earning up to this.
Many experienced corporate lawyers in South Africa could earn up to R 500 000 as a monthly salary. This is so because of the value they have acquired after many years in the profession and are now at a level where they offer excellent services due to their reputation.
On the other hand, a fresh corporate lawyer can start with a monthly salary of R 20 000. This is still better than what several others are being paid in the country. We should also consider the fact that as you progress in your career as a corporate lawyer, you get better at what you do, and you can earn more money too.
How To Earn More As A Lawyer In South Africa
What you earn as a corporate lawyer is dependent on various factors, usually revolving around where you work (the industry and specific organization), as well as what your level is in your career.
As a corporate lawyer working in Commerce and Industry, here is the average annual salary range:
1. General Counsel – R1 000 000 to R3 500 000 per annum
2. Junior Counsel – R500 000 to R700 000 per annum.
3. Legal Counsel – R750 000 to R950 000 per annum.
4. Senior Legal Counsel – R1 000 000 to R1 400 000
For a lawyer working in the Financial Services corridor, here is the average annual salary range:
1. General Counsel – R2 300 000 to R3 500 000
2. Junior Counsel – R400,000 to R650,000
3. Legal Counsel – R650,000 to R950,000
4. Senior Legal Counsel – R900 000 to R1 400 000
As a lawyer that embraced Private Practice, here is the average annual salary range:
1. Associate – R650 000 to R850 000
2. Newly Qualified – R580 000 to R650 000
3. Partner – R1 400 000 to R2 200 000
4. Senior Associate – R850 000 to R1 400 000
5. Senior Partner – R2 000 000 to R3 500 000
If you want to earn more money as an independent lawyer in South Africa, here are some of the things that should help you:
1. Give more attention to the right type of clients and ignore the wrong ones. This means you should not be too emotional with the wrong set of people.
2. Do all you can to get great clients who will appreciate your services and expertise.
3. Don’t just work longer, but smarter.
4. Try to spend less money on things that can be avoided and are not so necessary.
5. Improve your client intake process as much as possible. ..
6. Hire staff or use cost-effective services, and don’t do it all yourself.
7. Take advantage of technology to streamline your day.
If you are hired by an organization, you can earn more as you progress in your career and ascend the ranks via experiences and results. You can also focus on high-paying organizations and sectors if you want to.
The Role Of A Corporate Lawyer
Working as a corporate lawyer is not just rewarding but can also be challenging, as this is a professional thing. As you will get to see, it requires a lot of training to have all it takes to be a real and effective corporate lawyer in South Africa. You must first have an LLB degree and go through law school too.
Here are the prominent roles and duties of the corporate lawyer:
1. The corporate lawyer is skilled with the know-how to offer advice, make consultations, litigate and indulge in every necessary legal activity to see to it that the rights and privileges of the client are effected and adequately implemented.
2. The corporate lawyer will study things like the constitution, statutes, decisions, as well as ordinances of quasi-judicial organizations, so they can be well grounded in what they do and represent.
3. The corporate lawyer gets evidence and every other detail meant for management decision-making.
4. A corporate lawyer is saddled with the responsibility of preparing and reviewing different types of legal instruments and documents for definite purposes.
For instance, the corporate lawyer can work with contracts, licenses, purchases, and so on. They should examine and work on legal data to determine the advisability of defending or prosecuting a lawsuit.
Additionally, they have the skills to give useful advice to officials on proposed legislation that may just affect the organization.
5. The corporate lawyer knows the processes of making applications for copyrights or registration of the client’s products, trademarks, and any other necessary ones.
The lawyer is also the one to advise the organization as to whether to initiate or defend lawsuits. It is easy to give heed to what these professionals are saying in this regard due to their expertise.
6. A corporate lawyer conducts pretrial preparations and has the skills to defend the organization they are working for in lawsuits, whether they are hired by the organization temporarily or permanently.
7. The corporate lawyer gives advice to officials on things like government regulations, tax matters, and all that concerns legal rights.
8. A trained corporate lawyer will represent their clients before quasi-judicial or administrative agencies of the government.
How To Become A Lawyer In South Africa
Here are the steps you need to take to become a lawyer in South Africa:
1. Pass matric
Starting from scratch, you need to pass matric with the right subjects to get into the university where you will run for your LLB programme. A student can complete their matric at any high school that qualifies for a national senior certificate or related.
2. Studying LLB
Next, you proceed to a university to get your LLB degree, after fulfilling their requirements. Generally, you will have to study for four years if you don’t have issues passing your subjects.
3. Doing vacation work at a registered law firm
One of the best things that will help you get your hands on the practical aspect of these things is via indulging in vacation work in a law firm. You will have a first-hand experience of how these things work.
4. Doing your law articles
You work as a candidate attorney for two years, and it can be sorted at any registered law firm in the country. At this stage, you will work under the supervision of a registered attorney. This is after wrapping up your university programme.
5. Attorneys’ admission exam
You must take and pass the board exams before you can officially become a lawyer in South Africa. Therefore, you have to be very prepared so you can scale through without having any issues.
6. Attorney admission
Once you have scaled through, you get into the system and submit your application to be admitted as an attorney. It is necessary to add that in South Africa, a person has to be a bonafide citizen and at least 21 years of age to become one.
The average corporate lawyer salary in South Africa is R 594 520 per year. Many lawyers are earning more than this figure, based on their expertise, years of experience, and also their place of work. Because the corporate lawyer earns a salary that is reasonably above the national average, then it means the profession is not only prestigious but also lucrative.