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Attorneys and Law Firms

SIC 8111 | NAICS 541110

The following guide to industry information, research, and analysis provides sources for industry trends and statistics, financial ratios, salary surveys, and more.

Select from the following sections or scroll below to view available resources:

Industry Analysis, Statistics, Trends, and Forecasts

Financial Information and Financial Ratios

Compensation and Salary Surveys

Business Valuation Resources

For guides to other industries, see our index of over 400 industries.

Industry Analysis, Statistics, Trends, and Forecasts

Law Firms  (view report)
Laws Firms by Specialty  (view reports)

Comprehensive research reports provide in-depth industry analysis and five-year growth forecasts, with special focus on the underlying structure and external forces and relationships that affect industries and their performance. Report contents include:

  • Key statistics
  • Market size and characteristics
  • Current performance
  • Competitive landscape
  • Major companies
  • Key risk and success factors
  • Five-year growth forecast

ALM Media Properties, LLC
The American Lawyer

Monthly professional journal features news and analysis for legal executives and professionals, with special features including the "Am Law 100" report (May issue) which ranks the top 100 law firms by revenue, the "Am Law 200" report (June issue) which ranks the top 200 firms by revenue, and the "A-List" report (July issue) which ranks the top 20 firms based on data from four other ALM surveys.

First Research

Legal Services
First Research profiles cover key aspects of an industry's size, scope, and operations, and include a five-year revenue growth forecast. Profiles are updated quarterly and include:
  • Industry overview
  • Recent developments
  • Critical issues and challenges
  • Business trends and opportunities
  • Executive insights
  • Financial benchmarking data
  • Five-year growth forecast

American Bar Association

Publications section provides an extensive selection of books, periodicals, and other publications covering a wide range of topics, with topics covered in the practice management and professional interests sections including practice management and administration, billing and finance, marketing, technology, multijurisdictional practice, professional liability, legal education, and career guidance.

IRS Audit Technique Guides

IRS audit guide includes an overview of the legal services industry and its business practices, with topics covered in the guide including accounting records, bank accounts (e.g., operating account, general trust account, segregated trust account), client-related expenses, attorney-client privilege, gross income and payment arrangements, advanced client costs, and promotional expenses.

Financial Benchmarking Data

Industry Financial Ratios
Law Firms  Search for "541110" to see reports for specific practice areas
Five-year financial statement analysis includes income statements, balance sheets, and key financial ratios, with data available by sales size range on a national, state, and metro area level.
  • Income and expense detail in dollars and percentages
  • Balance sheets in dollars and percentages
  • Cash flow analysis
  • Liquidity and working capital ratios
  • Profitability and return on investment ratios
  • Asset turnover and efficiency ratios
  • Capital structure and debt service ratios

ALM Legal Intelligence
Publications available from this organization include:

Survey of Law Firm Economics
Annual survey allows users to compare their firm's performance with other similar firms based on firm size, practice area, market area population, and geographic region (e.g., national, census region, and metro area), with data analyzed in the survey including income and expenses, billable hours, unbilled time, billing rates, realization, fees receivable, partner and staff compensation, and personnel ratios.

Small Law Firm Economics Survey
Annual survey allows users to measure their firm's performance against other firms with 20 or fewer attorneys based on firm practice area, market area population, and geographic region (e.g., national, census region), with data analyzed in the survey including income and expenses, hourly billing rates, billable hours worked, unbilled time, receivables, partner and staff compensation, and staffing ratios.

Compensation Surveys

National Association for Law Placement
Associate Salary Survey

Comprehensive annual survey provides compensation data for associates by firm size, geographic region, and metro area population, with detailed salary analyses available for 29 major metropolitan markets. Other compensation surveys available from this source include the biennial "Law School Career Services Survey" and the biennial "Public Sector & Public Interest Attorney Salary Survey".

ALM Legal Intelligence
Publications available from this organization include:

Survey of Law Firm Economics
Annual survey provides information on billing rates, billable hours, realization, and other factors which affect law firm compensation, with job positions analyzed in the survey including equity partners, non-equity partners, associates, and of counsel personnel, and compensation data included in the survey broken out by region, firm size, practice area, years admitted to the bar, and years of experience.

ALM/IPMA Compensation Survey for Paralegals and Managers
Annual compensation survey provides salary, bonus, and benefits information for paralegals, legal assistants, and case managers, with compensation information reported by practice area, years in profession, size of firm or department, company revenue, type of industry, and geographic region (e.g., national, census region, and metropolitan area). Detailed table of contents is available online.

Business Valuation Resources

Valuing Professional Practices and Licenses: A Guide for the Matrimonial Practitioner
Part B: Valuing Law Practices
Ronald L. Brown (Editor), Wolters Kluwer, supplemented annually

Comprehensive valuation guide contains over 45 chapters focused on valuing professional practices, degrees, and licenses for divorce purposes, with topics addressed in the guide specific to attorneys including the difficulties of representing attorneys in divorces, legal issues in valuing a law practice, and various factors included in the sale of a legal practice relevant to valuation for divorce litigation.

Small Business Valuation Multiples

Legal Practices

Comprehensive reference guide provides market-based valuation multiples for professional firms that provide legal services for individuals, organizations, and government agencies for a range of areas or specific areas of law such as corporate, criminal, family, patent, real estate, or personal injury law.