- The number of female partners at law firms has barely budged in the last 12 years, according to a new study.
- Less than a quarter of all equity partners in law firms are women.
While the number of female law school students is rising, it’s still difficult for women to climb the career ladder at big, prestigious law firms.
The number of female equity partner at top US law firms has risen by only 5% in the last 12 years, according to the latest survey by the National Association of Women Lawyers (NAWL).
Around 20% of equity partners are women, the survey found, up only slightly from 15% in 2006.
This lack of representation also comes despite the fact that women actually slightly outnumber men in law school classrooms, with 51% enrollment.
In addition, although women comprise 47% of associate ranks at law firms, that percentage starts to dwindle as female lawyers rise in seniority. Women make up only 31% of those entering the equity partnership class.
There’s also a gender wage gap at law firms, the survey shows. Women in associate positions make $US7,712 less a year than their male coworkers on average. That income disparity is even wider for those who manage to become equity partners. While female employees work as many hours as their male colleagues, female equity partners only receive 92% of what men make.
Meanwhile, men continue to dominate the top earner spots, according to the survey. 93 per cent of top US firms say their top earner is a man.
The underrepresentation of women in leadership positions does not only exist at law firms. A chart released by Statista in May shows that leadership roles for women at major tech companies hovers at well below 50%.
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