The Law Society has recommended a minimum salary that providers of training contracts should pay their trainees.
Chancery Lane said that providers should, “as a matter of good practice”, pay trainees at least £20,276 in London and £18,183 outside of London.
The sums are based on the living wage plus the average yearly Legal Practice Course (LPC) repayment, which the Law Society noted was a required course and therefore a cost many trainees would be burdened with.
The Law Society, which worked with the Junior Lawyers Division on the recommendation, said it would review the minimum salary every November.
Chancery Lane’s recommendation comes 18 months after the Solicitors Regulation Authority decided it would no longer set a regulatory minimum salary but instead require firms to pay trainees at least the national hourly minimum wage.
Law Society chief executive Catherine Dixon said: “The recommended minimum salary for trainee solicitors will contribute to better equality and diversity within the solicitor profession, enabling and supporting entrants from all backgrounds.
“Qualifying to be a solicitor should always be on merit. We never want applicants' backgrounds to be a barrier. Many firms have developed recruitment policies that promote equality, diversity and inclusion, and we hope that firms will also adopt the recommended minimum salary for their trainee solicitors.”
Max Harris, Chair of the Junior Lawyers Division, said: “The JLD welcomes the Law Society's introduction of the recommended minimum salary for trainee solicitors, and considers it a huge step forward for social mobility in the legal profession.
“It is of utmost importance that as a profession we ensure access is open to all, regardless of background. By adhering to at least the Law Society's recommended minimum salary, firms will encourage better access.”