Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP Salary and Benefits |

Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP

My experience with Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP has been fantastic. Their attorneys are top-notch, the atmosphere is positive, the management is effective, and the business operations are seamless. I wholeheartedly recommend them.
Donna Harris made a great representative of their law firm with their professional approach and quick response time.
Harrison Barnes

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BCG Attorney Search works with over 25,000 law firms. Every month, tens of thousands of attorneys submit their resumes to Harrison, who works with less than 2% of them. Harrison knows quality and does whatever it takes to get his candidates jobs: Since 2000, Harrison has personally made thousands of placements and is undoubtedly the most effective legal placement professional in history.

Salary & Benefits

The firm employs a set lockstep system for U.S. associate salaries and bonuses. A majority of the Lateral Link Members say that this is the most preferred option as it eliminates "associate vs. associate competition" and makes the workplace environment more conducive.

Cleary Gottlieb's starting salary is $160,000. The firm pays this starting salary in each of its U.S. offices. In 2009 and 2010, the firm matched the lower "Cravath-level" bonuses but in 2011 they matched Sullivan & Cromwell's additional spring bonus. Notably, during the worst of the financial crisis, the firm did not engage in any salary freezes or cuts.

The firm offers a standard four weeks of vacation time and eighteen months maternity leave. The firm provides a subsidized cafeteria, free gym membership and free dinners.

In addition to bar expenses, new associates in New York can expect Cleary to pay for a broker fee required to find housing, as well as travel and lodging in Albany or New York City for the bar exam.

There is no official minimum billable-hour requirement to receive bonuses. Though the expectation is that associates will bill at least 2000 hours, like most top corporate firms, associates regularly bill far more than that.

Title Branch/
Exp. year Period Avg Base
Associate New York City 1st Year Yearly $190,000.00 
Associate Washington 1st Year Yearly $190,000.00 


  • Bar Association Fees
  • Business Casual Dress Code
  • 401(k)/IRA/Other Ret. Plan w/Employer Contribution
  • CLE
  • Dental Insurance
  • Domestic Partner Benefits
  • Employee Assistance Program
  • Family/Dependent Care Leave
  • Flexible Spending Account/Pre-Tax Option
  • Health Club Membership
  • Life/AD&D Insurance
  • Long-term Care Insurance
  • Long-term Disability Insurance
  • Medical Insurance
  • Medical Spending Account
  • Parental Leave
  • Parking/Transportation
  • Relocation Expenses
  • Short-term Disability Insurance
  • Sick Leave
  • Technology (Laptop, PDA, etc.)
  • Vacation Leave
  • Vision Insurance

Benefits Package:

Health, dental, life & disability insurance; 401(k) Plan; Flex.Spending Accts.; Pretax Transit Prog.; gym membership; 4 wks.vacation (5 wks. after 4th yr anniv.);18 wks. primary caregiver leave; 5 wks. secondary caregiver leave; New Mother's Room; off-site & emergency child care; Flex-Time program and Telecommuting program; Employee Assistance Program; moving expenses; broker fee; bar review tuition; NYS bar exam fee; one bar membership dues annually; travel & lodge for Bar Exam/Albany; law school matching gift program.

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