A partner is a lawyer who is promoted within a firm to partnership level. This person will have ideally clocked up at least 6 years’ experience and will either become equity or non-equity partners. Equity partners have an ownership stake in the firm and share in the law firm’s profits, while non-equity partners are generally paid a fixed salary and may be vested with certain limited voting rights in law firm matter. As well as having proved themselves as highly proficient lawyers, partners in a law firm will need to understand ‘critical areas of performance’ to ensure the firm flourishes. These include business development, people management, client relationship management and financial performance.

What does a partner do?

Day-to day responsibilities of a partner may consist of:

  • To manage and remain in overall control of the management of the firm (and each office) within it on an operational basis
  • To ensure that the Partners and Fee Earners are effective in the delivery of the Firm’s services to its clients and do so profitably
  • Establishing organisational strategies of the firm through strategic thinking and direction
  • Establishing operational strategies of the firm
  • Establishing financial strategies
  • Generating revenue through client management
  • Increasing revenue through new and additional services, and developing cost-benefit analysis;
  • Maintain stability of the law firm
  • Preventing and managing conflict
  • Enhancing the firm’s reputation by setting an example regarding ethics, morals, legal and professionalism and reaffirming this throughout the organisation
  • Creating and establishing human resource strategies by determining the structure of the firm

What key skills should a partner have?

  • A high level of ability with regards to client and customer care and management
  • Legal compliance
  • Relationship building
  • Verbal and written communication
  • Financial planning and strategy
  • Outstanding management ability
  • Strategic thinking for long term
  • Integrity
  • Outstanding knowledge of your firm’s specialism and industry as a whole
  • The ability to communicate exceptionally
  • Excellent organisational and interpersonal skills
  • The ability to work independently
  • Problem solving and decision making
  • Extensive work experience in legal environment

What qualifications will I need to be a partner?

To become a partner, you must first have ideally clocked up at least 6 years’ experience and will either become equity or non-equity partners. You don’t necessarily have to have a degree in law, however, aspiring candidates should the relevant work experience in a legal role and be able to prove their worth.

 

 

How much does a partner earn?

The starting salary for a partner is usually around £42,510, according to Payscale.

The average salary for a partner is £81,808.07.*

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