in Careers Advice, Employers

Locum Solicitors and ILEX Hourly Rates for March 2017

Hourly Rates of Pay for Locum Solicitors and Legal Executives – March 2017

We have noticed a change in locum rates for conveyancing and I suspect this is a general adjustment in the market. Although locum hourly rate payment vary widely according to the demand, length of assignment, level of experience and advance notice available, we have seen movement downwards and a number of locums not getting work if their rate is too high.

Residential conveyancing rates are now settling at around the £28-32 per hour mark in most areas of the UK for any assignments longer than a few weeks. I suspect that the days of firms paying £40-45 per hour have probably ended (it has been quite a brief interlude from the norm!) and we think £35 per hour is going to be the maximum level seen generally. This was the case for residential conveyancing until 2016 when the hourly rates seemed to spike.

March 2017 Locum Rates:

  • Residential Conveyancing Locum Solicitors – 1-5 years PQE, £25-30 per hour (no variation for central London).
  • Conveyancing Locum Solicitors & ILEX – 5-35 years PQE, handling all levels of conveyancing including managing a department – £25-£35 per hour, including central London.
  • Commercial Property Solicitors – 1-40 years PQE – £30-45 per hour.
  • Wills & Probate Solicitors and Legal Executives – 3-35 years PQE – £30-45 per hour – usually the minimum is £35.
  • Family Solicitors – 4-40 years PQE – £22-32 per hour. Occasionally this goes up to £35 per hour for short notice or a few days cover.
  • Civil Litigation Solicitors and ILEX– 1-35 years PQE. £25-35 per hour. These rates cover mainstream litigation – eg county court and small claims matters.
  • Commercial Litigation Solicitors – 3+ years PQE – £35-50 per hour. Occasionally this is higher.
  • Company Commercial Solicitors – 3+ years PQE – £35-70 per hour.
  • Employment Solicitors – 3+ years PQE – difficult to give a range this year due to the lack of work generally in this field.
  • Personal Injury and Clinical Negligence – 3+ years PQE – £18-£30 per hour. Work very sporadic.
  • In House Legal Department Rates: 0-3 years PQE – £22-32 per hour (wide range due to variables in legal department work), 3+ years PQE – £30-75 per hour (very wide range due to the nature of in house work and companies concerned..).

NB all rates exclude agency fees. The rates are for self-employed locums billing firms directly on a weekly basis.

Jonathan Fagan

Jonathan Fagan LLM FIRP is Managing Director of Ten-Percent Legal Recruitment. He has been recruiting solicitors and legal support staff for law firms and in house legal departments for over 20 years and handles roles from junior fee earners through to partners and law firm sales/purchases. A non-practising solicitor on the Roll since 2000, he is also the author of a number of legal career books, which are available at You can contact Jonathan at