The recommended minimum salary for trainee solicitors has been boosted by almost 2%. The Law Society announced today that trainees at London firms should now be paid at least £22,541 a year, up from £22,121, while those working outside the capital should receive at least £19,992, up from £19,619. The new rate comes into effect on 1 May and employers are encouraged to implement it as soon as possible.

Simon Davis, Law Society president, said: ‘The solicitor profession offers an incredibly fulfilling career and nobody should face unnecessary financial barriers to entry. I encourage all law firms to adopt this recommendation, pay their trainees a fair minimum salary for their hard work and encourage greater social mobility.’

However, according to research by legal recruiter Douglas Scott, 30% of all trainees are paid less than the recommended minimum levels, five percentage points more than last year. Trainees working outside of London are hardest hit, with 35% receiving less than the Law Society’s former recommended minimum of £19,619.

Chair of the Junior Lawyers Division Charlotte Parkinson said: ‘Many junior lawyers leave education with significant levels of debt – particularly where they have had to self-fund their Legal Practice Course – and it is important that they are paid a fair rate and able to repay that debt.

‘The JLD urges all employers to pay the Law Society’s recommended minimum salary and ensure that talented junior lawyers are not deterred from entering the profession because of their financial background.’