Programs

Average Corporate Lawyer Salary in India [For Freshers & Experienced in 2023]

Corporate lawyers are among the most in-demand professionals in our country, thanks to the unique skillset and expertise of such professionals. 

When you plan a career in law, curiosity about the general lawyer salary in the country is very normal. The lawyer salary, or specifically, the lawyer salary in India, depends on a lot of parameters and has no single figure as an answer. 

In order to find the answer to how much does a lawyer earn in India, one has to look into all of those parameters and get an estimation. The first and foremost parameter would be the category of the lawyer. Whether they are corporate lawyers, patent attorneys, criminal defense lawyers, and so forth. Compared to the other types, the salary of a corporate lawyer is usually on the higher side.

However, the best way to determine how much in-demand a job really is through checking how much pay it offers. The average salary of lawyer in India depends on several factors ranging from the high demand in a specific location to the level of experience a lawyer brings to the table. Thus, to help you in understanding the demand of corporate lawyers in India, we have prepared the following article on corporate lawyer salary in India.

Let’s get started:

What is the Average Corporate Lawyer Salary in India?

Take a look at the given figures based on the salary of a lawyer in India to understand how the salary figure works for lawyers based in India. These are estimated ranges of figures which are prone to change lawyer salary in India per month with a change in the company and their offered salary packages.

The average corporate lawyer’s salary in India is INR 6.9 Lakh per annum. Freshers in this field earn around INR 1.47 Lakh per annum on average. This figure depends on the base salary, shared profit, and the received bonus. 

Corporate lawyers are in evergreen demand because of the unique nature of their skill. Organizations of various sectors require the expertise of corporate lawyers to help them get through legal problems. It’s certainly one of the most sought-after professions and as the number of companies in India is increasing, the demand for corporate lawyers is increasing accordingly. 

This might have given a rough idea of how much a lawyer earn in India, mainly a corporate one. However, there are many layers in determining a corporate lawyer salary in India.

Our Learners also read: Free online Law courses with certificates!

Job Description of Corporate Lawyer

The job description plays a major role in determining the salary of a corporate lawyer and how much a lawyer earn in India. The more responsibilities they take, the higher their pay gets.

Corporate lawyers will guide any company to run under the norms of the legal jurisdiction. They can work in-house, as a consultant, or even as advocates, policymakers, and researchers.

From major operational decisions to new mergers to even cases against a company or business deals, corporate lawyers will be needed to set the parameters well. This field has emerged only recently and thus has hordes of opportunities as well as growth options.

Corporate law offers immense potential to make it big, given the immense scope involved. If you have the mettle and are also hardworking and thorough in Business Law and sub-areas such as Investment Law, Financial Law, Human Rights, Diligence, Compliance, Environmental Law, IP Laws, Insurance Law, Constitutional Law, and International Trade Law; you can make a plunge in the field of corporate law. This prominently serves as the reason why the salary of a lawyer in India substantially grows with time.

Primarily, corporate lawyers advise their clients in business transactions, defend them in lawsuits, claim liability, advise on prosecutions, obligations, and legal rights. They handle all the aspects of corporate law which consists of legal tasks pertaining to the formation, management, and administration of a company (or an entity similar to a company). 

Common examples of such enterprises include LLCs (limited liability companies), partnerships, etc. They are responsible for assisting in formatting the new company which requires the filing of various legal documents related to incorporation and ensuring that the company meets all the local, state, and federal regulations.

After the formation of a company, the corporate lawyer would advise the business on handling transactions with other corporations for helping the same comply with the regulations. 

Corporate lawyers represent their clients in court or before government organizations. They are responsible for presenting and summarizing these cases to judges. In this process, the corporate lawyer might have to collect evidence, evaluate all the findings, and create strategies to present the case.

They assist their companies in licensing new technologies and handling any legal issues that may arise. Corporate lawyers have to plan and advise their clients on corporate mergers, large deals, and acquisitions. Due to the unique requirements of their role, corporate lawyers must be experts at the corporate law of their country, state, and locality. They must be familiar with the various rules and regulations related to company formation, compliance, transactions, and other related aspects. 

Corporate lawyers have to meet judges, argue motions, analyze laws, question witnesses and interpret regulations with probable case outcomes during a trial. Clearly, they require strong oration and interpersonal skills. 

While corporate lawyers work in business hours they might have to work overtime because of the hectic nature of their role and during large transactions, legal cases, or mergers. They work with other legal team members such as patent lawyers to prepare their cases or ensure everything goes smoothly. The upper management of a company relies on the corporate lawyer to assist them with regulatory problems and corporate strategies. 

As a corporate lawyer is responsible for meeting with regulators and government agencies, they might have to travel sometimes although the role doesn’t require much traveling. However, a lot of work conditions depend on the kind of enterprise they work with. For example, if your corporation has a lot of satellite offices, you might have to travel frequently. 

Getting the top corporate lawyer salary in India depends on a lot of factors. We have discussed the most important determining factors of corporate lawyer salary in India in the next section. 

According to a survey by Gallup, despite the scarcity in start-up practice from the lawyers’ end,  60% of lawyers in corporate departments have entrepreneurial ambitions.

To become a corporate lawyer, you have to-

    • Complete a bachelor’s degree in law or a related field
    • Complete a relevant internship
    • Apply for a license from the relevant Bar Association
  • Network, work on gaining experience, and work developing a resume. 

Factors Affecting Corporate Lawyer Salary in India

There isn’t any one-rule-fits-all norm for deciding upon how much does a lawyer earn in India. Your background, credentials, and performance at law school matter at the outset as does your experience and the firm you are seeking employment at to decide the salary of lawyer in India!

1. Location

How much do lawyers earn in India greatly varies with their working location. Your location plays a huge role in determining how much you make as a corporate lawyer. Some locations offer salaries higher than the national average while some places offer less than the average pay. It’s important to know which kind of place you live in to calculate your potential earnings in this field.

Corporate lawyers in Chennai earn around 99.9% more than the national average. Similarly, corporate lawyers in Bangalore and New Delhi earn 41% and 17.5% higher than the average wages respectively. 

Then there are locations that offer less than average pay such as Kolkata, where corporate lawyers earn 67.5% less than the national median. Other locations that offer less than average salaries include Pune (57%) and Ahmedabad (29%). 

2. Skills

Another notable factor that affects your corporate lawyer’s salary in India is the skills you have. The unique nature of this role requires you to have a strong grasp on certain skills, especially law-related. 

According to the statistics, corporate lawyers with certain skills in their arsenal earn significantly more than others. For example, corporate lawyers with corporate governance skills earn 131% more than the average. Other beneficial skills for these professionals include Mergers and Acquisitions which offers 23% higher pay than the average and Contract Management which offers 70% more than the median pay. 

 

If you want to get lucrative pay then you must focus on developing the most in-demand skills such as Corporate Governance and Contract Management. They will help you get a high-paying job in this field very easily. 

3. Experience

Wondering how much does a lawyer earn in India? Here is a peek at the average salary of lawyer in India and the factors affecting it.

One of the most influential factors in determining your pay is the amount of professional experience you have. 

Freshers in this field with less than a year’s experience earn INR 5.11 lakh per annum on average. Corporate lawyers with one to four years of experience earn around INR 5.82 lakh per annum on average.

However, after a certain level of experience, your pay in this field increases substantially. Corporate lawyers with a significant amount of experience (five to nine years) make INR 14.5 lakh per annum on average. This figure stays relatively the same as you gain more experience.

It’s clear that as you gain more experience in this sector, your pay increases accordingly. Percentage-wise, freshers in this field earn 26% less than the median whereas late-career professionals in this sector earn 111% more than the median.  

4. Employer

When calculating what the average lawyer salary in India per month is, remember that experience with a reputed employer is one crucial parameter that dictates the average salary of lawyer in India and abroad.

Finally, a significant influencer of your pay as a corporate lawyer is who you work for. Corporate lawyers can work in various industries as their expertise can be used in nearly all sectors.

Companies of all fields have to ensure they follow all the regulations and want to avoid legal issues. Apart from working directly with a company, a corporate lawyer might work in a law firm alongside several other lawyers. 

Different employers offer different salaries such as Lexlit Advocates and Solicitors, a law firm, offers up to INR 48,000 to corporate lawyers while EXL Service offers up to INR 62,000. 

 

 

5. Specialization

How much does a corporate lawyer earn in India?  Corporate lawyer salary in India is hugely influenced by their expertise and experience in specific legal domains that are in high market demand. 

Topping the charts are private equity, investment banking, capital markets, M&A, taxation, IP, and venture capital law domains where compensation packages can run in crores for niche expertise cultivated over decades of complex high-value deal advisory.

As specialization grows more acute to tackle emerging areas like crypto regulations, HR laws, data privacy etc – so does recognition and corporate law salary. With technology disruptions and globalized business landscapes, corporate law itself is evolving. 

Domains like AI, ethical hacking, ESG advisory and cross-border M&A require advanced degrees and Ivy League credentials to demonstrate specialized skills. Global exposure becomes vital. 

Lawyers cultivating micro-expertise through premium qualifications and multijurisdictional experience in trending areas thus enter the big leagues faster.

6. Negotiation Skills

If you want high salary of corporate lawyer in India or tax lawyer salary ensure to sharp business acumen and negotiation brilliance that consistently delivers clear strategic advantage and water-tight risk mitigation for clients also bring in big money for corporate hotshots and no dbout high corporate law salary.

Building strong relationships, identifying negotiation levers through astute business sense, having the ability to interpret commercial implications of legal provisions, and crafting airtight contracts that align with clients’ interests – these in-demand skills accelerate both reputation and family lawyer salary.

The most successful corporate lawyer salary or criminal lawyer salary are shrewd businessmen first and legal experts next. Intuiting the commercial contexts, strategic priorities and identifying potential negotiating levers comes from years of experience across industries and players. 

A keen eye on industry trends, the ability to call out flags, and clarity on implications are key. 

Next comes the finesse to steer stakeholders gently towards the optimal middle ground through tactful communication, emotional intelligence, relationship capital, and the flexibility to reassess initial legal positions if needed. 

Mastery across domains reveals the business strategist with a holistic vision – the trusted boardroom confidante billion-dollar organizations want by their side.

7. Nature of Clients & Cases

Working with marquee Fortune 500 corporations and HNI power promoters on business critical, high-value transactions has a force multiplier effect on lawyers’ fees owing to the complexity and responsibility involved. 

High-stakes deals with a larger scope of work allow billing higher hourly rates while enriching experience accelerates career progression and continuity of big-ticket clients. Top lawyers diversify, acquiring a large retainerships and one-off mega deal advisory portfolio.

Prestigious clients and high-profile cases become stepping stones to bigger salary for a corporate lawyer and greater complexity in turn. Top-tier lawyer salary or criminal lawyer salary positively reinforce their personal brand by being involved in noteworthy deals and representing respected corporations.

8. Law Firm’s Profitability

A law firm’s financial health and profit margins directly impact the salary increments and bonuses extended to its corporate litigation lawyer. Successful elite firms generate high gross revenues through steep billing rates charged to corporate clientele and premium retainer ships for trusted advisory spanning decades. 

After accounting for operational overheads and partner profits, the surplus gets invested back into talent retention schemes via meatier salaries and incentives. Rapidly growing firms similarly attract top-notch legal brains via compensation attractiveness. 

However, strained balance sheets watch management turn conservative on appraisals and variable pay during slower quarters to restore profitability metrics affecting earnings negatively.

Indian Law Firms that Pay the Highest Lawyer Salary in India: 

How much do lawyers earn in India also depends on the law firm they are associated with. Top law firms in India can pay up to INR 14 lakh per annum to their employees. Apart from high remuneration these law firms also provide a great opportunity of grooming and prepare their employees to become experts and serve their valuable clients worldwide. These law firms extend the valuable experience to fresher candidates. Below are some of the top law firms for corporate lawyers that heavily influence how much does a lawyer earn in India.

1. Khaitan and Co.

Found back in 1911, Khaitan and Co is India’s one of the oldest top law firms. The firm has more than 115 partners. The practice area of the firm includes banking and finance, competition law, dispute resolution, corporate, capital markets, energy, hospitality, infrastructure, intellectual property, funds, labour and employment, infrastructure and resources, and various other fields such as technology, and media, taxation etc.

The firm has several national and international clients and has won the prize of being the best law firm of the year.

The average salary of a legal associate with an experience of 1 to 5 years in this firm is around INR 10 lakhs per annum.

2. Sahrdul Amarchand Mangaldas & Co

This law firm is considered to be the current largest law firm in India with its offices being across several cities of the country, such as New Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Bengaluru, Chennai, Ahmedabad and Gurugram.

The firm has a global client base with more than 110 partners all around the world. The firm has also won the “Innovation in Legal expertise” title.

An associate with an experience between 1 to 5 years can earn an average of 17 lakhs per annum by working for this firm. The remuneration of associates with experience between 1 to 6 years ranges anywhere between INR 12 lakhs to INR 22 lakhs per annum.

3. Trilegal India

Trilegal India is one of the top law firms in India that has employed more than three hundred lawyers across India in the four major cities, Bangalore, Mumbai, New Delhi, and Gurgaon.

The firm mainly deals with real estate, infrastructure, energy, technology, and information technology fields. The firm is known for providing a great environment of analytical thinking for budding lawyers.

As a fresher of 0 to 1 year, one can get paid an average of INR 14.8 lakh per annum. A legal associate’s salary at Trilegal India ranges from INR 13 lakhs to INR 16 lakhs per annum.

4. Desai & Dewanji

Established in 1930, Desai & Dewanji is one of India’s oldest law firms and is widely popular for its high salary structure. The firm primarily deals with clients that are from the field of banking and finance, project and infrastructure, capital market, corporate problems and dispute resolution.

The firm is located in three major cities of the country, Mumbai, Delhi and Gurgram. The firm has more than 24 partners and a tidal of more than 185 lawyers across its offices.

A legal intern can earn an average of INR 2 lakh per annum by working for the company. Whereas legal associates with an experience between 2 to 6 years can earn anywhere between INR 7.2lakhs to INR 9.7 lakhs per annum.

5. Vaish Associates

Founded in 1971, Vaish Associates is a full-service law firm that deals with both national and internal clients. The company has its three major companies in Mumbai, Bangalore and New Delhi, where New Delhi is the headquarters. However, the law firm also provides support in several other metropolitan cities.

The firm gained its popularity by dealing in the fields of taxation, corporate, banking and finance, etc. Currently, the company has more than a dozen of partners and hundreds of associates working across the globe.

Associate trainees in the company get paid an average of INR 4 lakhs per annum. Whereas associates and Senior Associates with experience between 1 to 7 years earn an average of INR 9.1 to 9.2 lakhs per annum.

6. Talwar Thakore and Associates

The corporate law firm founded in 2007 is commonly known as TT&A. Around 60% of their current operations are now international. TT&A collaborated with Linklaters for the first time in 2011. Since then, the two organizations have successfully worked on different international projects together. 

The remuneration offered by this corporate law firm begins at Rs 13 lakhs. The firm also provides a hefty bonus spending on factors like devotion to client’s work, performance, and more. 

7. S&R Associates

S&R Associates is a highly successful law firm established in 2005. Only 20% of its operations are focused on the domestic market. The remaining 80% of work is international. The firm runs on a 50:50 ratio with 6 female and 6 male partners. It is one of the most prestigious firms for a corporate lawyer to work in India. 

Apart from corporate law, the firm also covers legal matters related to capital markets, private equity, IT & media, and more. 

The firm offers a lucrative corporate lawyer salary of more than Rs 13 lakhs in the beginning. S&R Associates also offer a performance-related bonus to lawyers. The firm hires top talents from educational institutions like ILS, NALSAR, and ILS. 

8. J Sagar and Associates

JSA is a national law firm with 40 partners and more than 200 lawyers. The corporate law firm has multiple offices in different locations, including New Delhi, Chennai, Mumbai, Hyderabad, and Bangalore. It was established by Jyoti Sagar in 1991. 

The firm offers around Rs 11.5 lakhs as the corporate lawyer salary in India. It also offers a lucrative bonus to employees. Moreover, every lawyer working at the firm can expect an increase in their base salary at the end of each year. 

How to Get the Top Corporate Lawyer Salary in India?

As we discussed in the previous section, your corporate lawyer’s salary in India depends on several factors. However, out of all of those factors, the one you control the most is the skills you have. By increasing the in-demand skills you have, you can enhance the amount you can make. Moreover, we have already seen how certain skills enhance your pay by a huge margin. 

There are multiple methods to develop such skills. However, the most efficient method to learn the most in-demand skills is through taking a course. Taking such a course would ensure that you learn all the necessary skills for this role and get the highest chance of earning the top corporate lawyer salary in India.

Trending Skills for Corporate Lawyers in India

The top skills that you should acquire to earn the average salary of a corporate lawyer in India are as follows:

  • Business Awareness: it is one of the most important skills for a corporate lawyer to understand how businesses work. This skill is essential for understanding the reason behind the success of a business. Sharp business acumen allows lawyer salary or highest paid lawyers to grasp the commercial context behind legal issues faster. They can delve into the strategic motivations, objectives, and challenges underpinning any situation, whether it is drafting an agreement, evaluating risk exposures, or planning compliance regimes.
  • Negotiation Skills: Good negotiation skills are extremely important for getting a high corporate lawyer salary in India. Negotiation skills are essential for settling disputes peacefully outside the court. It saves the cost of expensive litigation. Possessing strong negotiation tactics allows salary for a corporate lawyer or highest paid lawyers to steer stakeholders strategically towards the optimal middle ground during conflicts. By understanding the priorities and constraints of both parties, corporate litigation lawyer identify common goals and creatively structure solutions addressing key concerns without overstretching.
  • Company Law: In-depth knowledge of the Companies Act 2013 is necessary for all corporate lawyers. It helps understand legal aspects associated with appointing company officials, preventing fraud, and more.  With over 470 sections and rules influencing board constitution, corporate governance, audits, shareholder rights, mergers, and wind-ups – mastery over the intricacies of this vast legislation is non-negotiable. Nuances around permissible, conditional, and prohibited activities, compliance requirements, penalties, and exemptions need thorough analysis during advisory.
  • Technology Proficiency: As industries digitize, corporate litigation lawyer equipped with tech skills spanning AI, smart contracts, blockchain, cloud platforms, data science, etc, understand digital business models deeper to customize pragmatic counsel. Evaluating agreements, regulations, and risk exposures around disruptive innovation mandates digital fluency, allowing seamless integration of legal, technology, and business perspectives. With exponential data growth and process automation, most corporate decisions now involve evaluating digital capabilities, privacy needs, security controls, architecture designs, vendor ecosystems, etc., rather than merely traditional products. Without technology context around how platforms operate, their strengths, limitations, and risks – legal oversight gets limited to theoretical scrutiny rather than actionable risk-based guidance.
  • Data Privacy and Cybersecurity Knowledge: As data generation explodes, privacy and security considerations get tightly interwoven across digital initiatives and cloud adoption, requiring cross-functional literacy around global regulations, company security policies, risk management, and incident response across devices, networks, and applications. With data emerging as the most valuable asset today, cyber risks threaten business continuity through data or identity theft, ransomware attacks, and phishing schemes, leading to huge financial and reputation losses. Corporate counsels safeguard organizations by conducting data mapping audits profiling information usage, location, and flows. Overall, data protection mindfulness strengthens the first line of defense.
  • Financial Acumen: Sharpening financial analysis skills helps interpret statements, financial health, and funding scenarios accurately, advising clients on profitability impacts of decisions around fundraising options, M&A, capital allocation, taxation, or compliances, and long-term value creation. Parsing financial statements shrewdly identifies risk exposures early. Analysing past performance guides prudent forecasting. For acquisitions, astute modeling unearths fragile assumptions, indicating overvaluations ahead. Since legal, financial, and growth strategies tightly interlock, proficient corporate advisors speak the CFO’s language – fluently discussing metrics like capitalization tables, NPV, sensitivity analysis, WACC, and valuations multipliers gauging impacts of decisions holistically.
  • Dispute Resolution: With court backlogs averaging around 30 years for commercial suits in India, proficiency in negotiation, mediation and arbitration becomes pivotal for timely dispute resolution saving years, relationships and costs making settlement abilities intrinsic to corporate law capabilities. As backlogs hit crisis proportions, corporate lawyers and patent lawyer salary contribute most value when keeping clients productively out of courts through timely intervention. Deploying alternative resolution mechanisms like mediation, fast-track arbitration or even dynamic negotiation tactics for settling out of court minimizes enterprise paralysis due to disputes. Win-win collaboration mindsets identify solutions addressing root concerns before counterparty relationships turn irreparable.
  • Adaptability and Continuous Learning: Upgrading legal knowledge across jurisdictions on evolving regulations around niche domains like crypto, space laws, and sustainability reporting ensures timely counsel, aiding proofing of innovation and globalization strategies to mitigate compliance blindspots early. With business environment volatility the norm rather than the exception, corporate lawyers continually upgrade their expertise to steer opportunities prudently. Tracking emerging domains and regulatory shifts across key markets proactively future-proofs growth plans for minimized disruption when activating new geographies, products or alliances. Specialists cultivate reliable global peer networks to gain early signals on likely reforms across tax, IP, and M&A norms, helping model impacts on operating plans. Maintaining an ambidextrous outlook and evaluating adjacent possibilities from potential partnerships to M&A targets allows capitalizing on the upside from disruptions swifter.
  • Soft Skills: Honing emotional intelligence, situational judgment, communication, people management, and collaborative abilities smooth client interactions, building mutually trusting relationships, and conflict resolution skills crucial for positive commercial outcomes to get the high corporate lawyer salary in India or patent lawyer salary. People and relationships sit at the core despite corporate law being number-driven by nature. Like emotional radars, soft skills pick subtle cues guiding situational tone alignment to build rapport faster. Conversations turn collaborative rather than transactional by mastering body language, empathetic questioning, and non-verbal listening. Managing expectations comes naturally, preventing future blindsides. During negotiations, slowing down exchanges allows relationships to deepen, perceiving real underlying interests apart from stated positions.

Conclusion

As you can see, pursuing a career in corporate law is certainly a smart choice. Not only is this role well-respected but it’s also very lucrative and offers tons of growth opportunities. Of course, it is an intensive field that makes you keep engaged in constant study and pressure-laced deadlines too! But the offered average salary of a lawyer in India and the added reputation often lead people to feel an inclination towards this path, which is completely worth it if the candidate is willing to put in the work!

Above all, corporate law allows rare latitude to drive enterprise growth journeys, partnering with leadership and navigating ambiguous business environments with strategic counsel. Blending vigilance and ambition to further organizational priorities makes the profession intellectually stimulating and hugely purposeful improving industry dynamics while getting corporate lawyer average salary in India.

Do you have any suggestions for this article? Let us know in the comments.

 

Who are corporate lawyers?

A corporate lawyer, usually referred to as a company lawyer, handles a variety of legal matters pertaining to corporate business procedures. He/she frequently takes care of the client's commercial, legal, and financial needs. A corporate lawyer can be in charge of corporation taxation or evaluate and supervise mergers and acquisitions. As a corporate lawyer, you frequently draft company contracts, examine financial records for commercial transactions, and handle routine legal business issues. When required, corporate attorneys also represent their clients and companies in court.

What is the scope for corporate lawyers?

As people, businesses, and governments seek knowledgeable legal counsel and direction on numerous aspects of domestic and international business, there is an increasing need for corporate attorneys, and this demand is only expected to grow in the future. International commercial transactions have increased dramatically as a result of globalisation and a rise in outbound investments. Corporate entities may manage all facets of corporate operations and ethics with the aid of legal competence. You can work for the government or other business sectors, such as retailing, advertising, travel, tourism, finance, or technology, as a corporate lawyer. Employers for the job are flexible, and one may work as an in-house counsel for a company or as an associate or partner with a legal firm.

What are the qualifications to become a corporate lawyer?

As it offers a wide range of opportunities in almost every industry and competitive compensation, corporate law is a desirable career choice. After completing your 10+2, you can enroll in a five-year LL.B program to become a corporate lawyer. Additionally, you can get a graduate degree in any field before pursuing an LL.B. After that, you can choose to focus on corporate law or pursue a Master's degree in corporate law. A strong skill set and qualifications for this demanding employment sector may also include emotional intelligence, communication, self-confidence, and mental clarity.

Want to share this article?

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Get Free Consultation

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

×
Get Free career counselling from upGrad experts!
Book a session with an industry professional today!
No Thanks
Let's do it
Get Free career counselling from upGrad experts!
Book a Session with an industry professional today!
Let's do it
No Thanks