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Occupational Employment and Wage Statistics
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Occupational Employment and Wages, May 2021

23-2011 Paralegals and Legal Assistants

Assist lawyers by investigating facts, preparing legal documents, or researching legal precedent. Conduct research to support a legal proceeding, to formulate a defense, or to initiate legal action. Excludes “Legal Secretaries and Administrative Assistants” (43-6012).


National estimates for Paralegals and Legal Assistants
Industry profile for Paralegals and Legal Assistants
Geographic profile for Paralegals and Legal Assistants

National estimates for Paralegals and Legal Assistants:

Employment estimate and mean wage estimates for Paralegals and Legal Assistants:

Employment (1) Employment
RSE (3)
Mean hourly
wage
Mean annual
wage (2)
Wage RSE (3)
336,250 1.8 % $ 28.04 $ 58,330 1.1 %

Percentile wage estimates for Paralegals and Legal Assistants:

Percentile 10% 25% 50%
(Median)
75% 90%
Hourly Wage $ 17.51 $ 21.82 $ 27.03 $ 34.98 $ 42.61
Annual Wage (2) $ 36,410 $ 45,390 $ 56,230 $ 72,750 $ 88,640


Industry profile for Paralegals and Legal Assistants:

Industries with the highest published employment and wages for Paralegals and Legal Assistants are provided. For a list of all industries with employment in Paralegals and Legal Assistants, see the Create Customized Tables function.

Industries with the highest levels of employment in Paralegals and Legal Assistants:

Industry Employment (1) Percent of industry employment Hourly mean wage Annual mean wage (2)
Legal Services 258,310 22.64 $ 26.78 $ 55,690
Federal Executive Branch (OEWS Designation) 15,480 0.73 $ 35.38 $ 73,580
Local Government, excluding schools and hospitals (OEWS Designation) 14,890 0.28 $ 27.78 $ 57,770
State Government, excluding schools and hospitals (OEWS Designation) 9,240 0.42 $ 25.99 $ 54,060
Management of Companies and Enterprises 7,250 0.29 $ 37.73 $ 78,480

Industries with the highest concentration of employment in Paralegals and Legal Assistants:

Industry Employment (1) Percent of industry employment Hourly mean wage Annual mean wage (2)
Legal Services 258,310 22.64 $ 26.78 $ 55,690
Lessors of Nonfinancial Intangible Assets (except Copyrighted Works) 160 0.81 $ 40.98 $ 85,240
Federal Executive Branch (OEWS Designation) 15,480 0.73 $ 35.38 $ 73,580
Other Investment Pools and Funds 70 0.53 $ 32.00 $ 66,550
Insurance Carriers 5,050 0.42 $ 33.46 $ 69,600

Top paying industries for Paralegals and Legal Assistants:

Industry Employment (1) Percent of industry employment Hourly mean wage Annual mean wage (2)
Merchant Wholesalers, Nondurable Goods (4244 and 4248 only) 40 (7) $ 54.19 $ 112,700
Petroleum and Coal Products Manufacturing 30 0.03 $ 49.99 $ 103,990
Scientific Research and Development Services 700 0.09 $ 47.01 $ 97,780
Computer and Peripheral Equipment Manufacturing 40 0.03 $ 44.83 $ 93,240
Aerospace Product and Parts Manufacturing 100 0.02 $ 43.65 $ 90,800


Geographic profile for Paralegals and Legal Assistants:

States and areas with the highest published employment, location quotients, and wages for Paralegals and Legal Assistants are provided. For a list of all areas with employment in Paralegals and Legal Assistants, see the Create Customized Tables function.



Map of employment of paralegals and legal assistants by state, May 2021


States with the highest employment level in Paralegals and Legal Assistants:

State Employment (1) Employment per thousand jobs Location quotient (9) Hourly mean wage Annual mean wage (2)
California 34,710 2.10 0.88 $ 33.79 $ 70,290
New York 30,400 3.51 1.47 $ 30.42 $ 63,270
Florida 30,000 3.49 1.46 $ 25.93 $ 53,940
Texas 25,780 2.11 0.88 $ 26.94 $ 56,030
Illinois 13,630 2.43 1.02 $ 29.29 $ 60,920


Map of location quotient of paralegals and legal assistants by state, May 2021


States with the highest concentration of jobs and location quotients in Paralegals and Legal Assistants:

State Employment (1) Employment per thousand jobs Location quotient (9) Hourly mean wage Annual mean wage (2)
District of Columbia 5,540 8.36 3.50 $ 40.11 $ 83,420
Delaware 2,120 4.86 2.04 $ 28.58 $ 59,450
New York 30,400 3.51 1.47 $ 30.42 $ 63,270
Florida 30,000 3.49 1.46 $ 25.93 $ 53,940
Rhode Island 1,550 3.39 1.42 $ 28.70 $ 59,700


Map of annual mean wages of paralegals and legal assistants by state, May 2021


Top paying states for Paralegals and Legal Assistants:

State Employment (1) Employment per thousand jobs Location quotient (9) Hourly mean wage Annual mean wage (2)
District of Columbia 5,540 8.36 3.50 $ 40.11 $ 83,420
Washington 6,430 2.01 0.84 $ 34.57 $ 71,900
California 34,710 2.10 0.88 $ 33.79 $ 70,290
Massachusetts 8,430 2.48 1.04 $ 32.12 $ 66,820
New Jersey 7,590 1.97 0.83 $ 31.71 $ 65,950



Map of employment of paralegals and legal assistants by area, May 2021


Metropolitan areas with the highest employment level in Paralegals and Legal Assistants:

Metropolitan area Employment (1) Employment per thousand jobs Location quotient (9) Hourly mean wage Annual mean wage (2)
New York-Newark-Jersey City, NY-NJ-PA 29,240 3.37 1.41 $ 32.05 $ 66,660
Los Angeles-Long Beach-Anaheim, CA 14,810 2.59 1.09 $ 33.26 $ 69,180
Chicago-Naperville-Elgin, IL-IN-WI 11,990 2.83 1.19 $ 29.77 $ 61,920
Miami-Fort Lauderdale-West Palm Beach, FL 11,190 4.56 1.91 $ 27.97 $ 58,180
Washington-Arlington-Alexandria, DC-VA-MD-WV 10,860 3.70 1.55 $ 35.90 $ 74,670
Philadelphia-Camden-Wilmington, PA-NJ-DE-MD 9,600 3.62 1.52 $ 31.49 $ 65,500
Atlanta-Sandy Springs-Roswell, GA 8,450 3.27 1.37 $ 26.68 $ 55,490
San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA 7,660 3.42 1.43 $ 36.37 $ 75,640
Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington, TX 7,480 2.08 0.87 $ 29.46 $ 61,280
Houston-The Woodlands-Sugar Land, TX 7,150 2.47 1.03 $ 28.84 $ 59,980


Map of location quotient of paralegals and legal assistants by area, May 2021


Metropolitan areas with the highest concentration of jobs and location quotients in Paralegals and Legal Assistants:

Metropolitan area Employment (1) Employment per thousand jobs Location quotient (9) Hourly mean wage Annual mean wage (2)
New Orleans-Metairie, LA 2,640 5.22 2.19 $ 24.85 $ 51,690
Charleston, WV 490 4.97 2.08 $ 25.58 $ 53,210
Miami-Fort Lauderdale-West Palm Beach, FL 11,190 4.56 1.91 $ 27.97 $ 58,180
Columbia, SC 1,660 4.56 1.91 $ 22.98 $ 47,790
Tallahassee, FL 760 4.44 1.86 $ 22.78 $ 47,390
Santa Fe, NM 240 4.27 1.79 $ 23.82 $ 49,550
Jackson, MS 1,030 4.20 1.76 $ 21.67 $ 45,060
Jacksonville, NC 200 4.17 1.75 $ 20.96 $ 43,600
Port St. Lucie, FL 620 4.13 1.73 $ 23.49 $ 48,850
Little Rock-North Little Rock-Conway, AR 1,340 4.13 1.73 $ 19.95 $ 41,500