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Indian senior GCs can earn from Rs 80 - 300+ lakh per year, says recruiter

Loadsa money
Loadsa money

Legal search firm Vahura told Bar & Bench that general counsel (GC) with between 15 to 25 years of experience, working at companies, could earn from Rs 80 lakh to more than Rs 300 lakh per year as a cost-to-company (CTC) package, according to the recruiter’s internal research (see table below).

CTC can include such perks as insurance or gym memberships, and even a head legal with 10 to 15 years of experience could earn between Rs 40 lakh and Rs 100 lakh per year, according to the data provided by Vahura senior consultant Avinash Sah in an interview.

At the junior end, salaries started at Rs 4.8 lakh per year.

However, with 5 to 8 years of experience started at Rs 15 lakh per year up to Rs 36 lakh per year.

At law firms in 2012, according to Legally India’s salary survey data and research, a five-year PQE tier 1 law firm salary was between Rs 20.5-30 lakh per year, or Rs 17-25 lakh at tier 2 firms.

A 7-year associate at a tier 1 law firm could have earned between Rs 24-55 lakh per year, while at tier 2 law firms this could range from Rs 22-40 lakh per year.

Each of the in-house figures depended on the company, with Sah saying that Mumbai companies are the highest-paying, followed by the Delhi region, Bangalore, Hyderabad and then Chennai. Companies in the finance and pharma sectors paying the most, alongside IT or multinational companies or in sectors such as e-commerce or technology.

On average, in-house salaries were 15-25 per cent below pay at law firms.

According to a survey of 70 GCs by Vahura in 2014, the average in-house legal team was 12 lawyers large.

Experience Designations CTC range (in INR lacs)
1-3 years Executive Legal/Assistant Manager 4.8 – 12.0
3-5 years Manager/ Legal Counsel 8.4 – 18.0
5-8 years Senior Manager/Senior Legal Counsel 15.0 – 36.0
8-10 years Asst. Vice President/ Lead Legal Counsel 24.0 – 60.0
10-15 years Vice President/ Head Legal 40.0 – 100.0
15-25 years General Counsel / Director Legal 80.0 – 300.0+

Photo by Ravindraboopathi

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