Solicitors enjoy above-average health, according to an annual well-being survey from the Law Society - but stress remains a major concern.
According to the solicitors’ health and well-being 2013 survey, 88% of respondents reported being in good health, up from 86% in 2012 and seven percentage points above the national average.
However, 95% of the 2,226 surveyed reported stress at work, with 16% reporting ‘severe’ or ‘extreme’ levels of stress. The biggest causes were attributed to workload issues and client expectation. Only 2% of those affected said they would seek help.
Severe stress levels were highest in those working 45 hours or more per week, with 21% reporting extreme stress compared with 8% of those working fewer hours.
Nearly half - 45% - reported going into work when sick leave should have been taken. Just 38% had taken time off from work over the previous 12 months due to ill-health. Law Society president Nicholas Fluck (pictured) said many lawyers are drawn to ‘the high-pressure excitement’ of their jobs.
‘Lawyers do not want to let their clients down, which explains why they go to work if sick. It is humbling to see this dedication, but sometimes we need to pause and put our health first,' he said.
‘Solicitors experiencing stress or other sickness at work should talk to their manager about it. If for any reason they are not comfortable having that conversation, the Law Society has a free helpline to support them.’
Solicitors needing advice can speak to the Law Society Pastoral Care Helpline: 020 7320 5795.