Top 10 highest paid types of lawyers 2022 (Based on real data)

This post covers the highest paid types of lawyers.

Lawyers earn varying amounts of money depending on a variety of factors such as their area of practice and specialization, experience, the size of their firm, their law school, their location, etc.

Because of the variety, many students in their last years of law school begin to question which types of lawyers make the most money so that they can pursue them.

The average lawyer’s earnings in the United States in 2022 is 178,000 USD/y, with the lowest being 94,600 USD/y and the highest being 271,000 USD/y, (source) but that isn’t the whole scenario.

There are millions of lawyers out there with a wide range of income potential.

The following are the highest paid types of lawyers based on real data of lawyers’ Annual average salaries in the U.S (source)

Highest paid types of lawyers

TYPEAVERAGE SALARY
(PER YEAR)
LOWEST SALARY
(PER YEAR)
HIGHEST SALARY
(PER YEAR)
Family lawyers$236,459$44,617$797,929
Business lawyers$191,527$36,813$799,966
Employment lawyers$172,243$33,249$756,215
Federal Public defenderss$161,347$30,888$795,350
Real Estate Lawyers$131,851$55,870$460,000
Intellectual Property Lawyers$120,621$54,180$187,200
Immigration Lawyers$120,352$55,870$187,200
Medical Malpractice lawyers$116,449$22,429$597,379
Tax lawyers$108,744$20,917$560,998
Criminal Defense lawyers93,32317,788481,665

Family lawyers – $236,459

The highest-paid types of lawyers in America are Family lawyers, they are paid between $44,617 and $797,929 annually with an average annual salary of $236,459.

Family lawyers paid that money for assisting people with their legal concerns related to their families.

They deal with any domestic relations or family-related issues like divorce, separation, pre-nuptial agreements, child custody, family maintenance, domestic abuse, marital assets, etc.

Business lawyers – $191,527

Business lawyers are paid between $36,813 and $799,966 annually with an average annual salary of $191,527.

They are paid that money for helping their clients to handle all legal issues concerning corporate and business.

They are dealing with commercial contracts, business formations, business operations, business scaling, business management, business dissolution, and legal compliance matters.

Employment lawyers – $172,243

Employment lawyers are paid between $33,249 and $756,215 annually with an average annual salary of $172,243.

They are paid that money for helping their clients with legal issues concerning labor and employment.

They deal with workplace discrimination, terminations, retirement, harassment, salary and hours laws, benefits, pension security, and other issues involving unions, employers, and employees.

Federal Public defenders – $161,347

Federal Public defenders are paid between $30,888 and $795,350 annually with an average annual salary of $161,347.

The federal government pays them to handle criminal trials in US Federal Court for alleged federal crimes or criminal cases involving state law violations where a federal court can exercise federal jurisdiction.

Their responsibilities include;

  • They collect evidence, examine witnesses, or direct law enforcement to look into alleged offenses.
  • They prosecute criminal suspects in court through an adversarial process in which they present evidence of guilt to trial juries or judges.
  • They supervise the punishment or rehabilitation of convicted offenders by proposing sentences within federal or state guidelines or arranging plea agreements between defendants and the courts.

Real Estate Lawyers – $131,851

Real Estate Lawyers are paid between $55,870 and $460,000 annually with an average annual salary of $131,851.

They are paid that money for helping their clients in

  • Drafting legal documents for land conveyancing
  • Conducting due diligence in Real estate deals
  • Negotiating real estate transactions
  • Evictions and foreclosures
  • etc.

Intellectual Property Lawyers – $120,621

Intellectual Property Lawyers are paid between $54,180 and $187,200 annually with an average annual salary of $120,621.

They are paid that money for helping their clients create, manage and protect their Intellectual Property rights like trademarks, copyrights, patents, etc.

Their responsibilities include aiding their clients with product name and shape selection, trademark registration, patenting, and advising on the most commercially viable alternative for bringing their product to market.

Immigration Lawyers – $120,352

Immigration Lawyers are paid between $55,870 and $187,200 annually with an average annual salary of $120,352.

They are paid that money for helping their clients in

Medical Malpractice lawyers – $116,449

Medical Malpractice lawyers are paid between $22,429 and $597,379 annually with an average annual salary of $116,449.

They are paid that money to provide legal assistance to those injured by medical malpractice like improper treatment, negligence, botched operation, or misdiagnosis.

They bring medical malpractice lawsuits and negotiate settlements with insurance companies.

They may also represent health professionals who have been accused of malpractice.

Tax lawyers – $108,744

Tax lawyers are paid between $20,917 and $560,998 annually with an average annual salary of $108,744.

They are paid in exchange for assisting clients with all tax-related concerns, such as audits, collections, and appeals.

They are well-versed in every aspect of the IRS tax code, especially in areas such as business taxes, individual taxes, and tax disputes.

Criminal Defense lawyers-$93,323

Criminal Defense lawyers are paid between $17,788 and $481,665 annually with an average annual salary of $93,323.

They are paid in order to represent a client who has been charged with a crime.

Their duty is to demonstrate that the evidence presented in court is insufficient to establish their client’s guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.

They work with prosecutors to reduce charges for their clients, negotiate bail for their release from detention until trial, recommend appropriate penalties when a plea agreement is reached, give defendants legal advice, and represent them at their trials.

See: Types of criminal lawyers

Conclusion

The highest-paid types of lawyers in terms of annual average salary and annual lowest wage are Family lawyers who make an annual average salary of  $236,459  with the lowest salary of $44,617 while the highest-paid types of lawyers in terms of highest wage are business lawyers with the top wage of $799,966.

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Isack Kimaro
Isack Kimaro

Editor-in-chief and founder of sherianajamii.com. Holder of Bachelor of Laws (LL.B) and Post Graduate Diploma in Legal Practice. Lawyer by profession and blogger by passion