How Much Attorney General Salary Does an Attorney General Make?

how much attorney general salary

Gain insights into what attorneys general earn at Office of the New York State Attorney General and compare salaries with companies within their industry. Learn about employee retention and the influence that pay has on company culture.

Attorneys are paid under the General Schedule (GS) for federal employees as set out in Title 5, US Code. Their salary varies by location and they also receive locality pay.

Job description

An attorney general job involves litigation, legal research and providing advice to state agencies. To succeed in this job effectively requires excellent communication skills as well as being comfortable working in a fast-paced environment. Furthermore, this position requires someone with a law degree licensed in their home state of practice.

The Office of the New York State Attorney General seeks career applicants with talent, motivation and the highest ethical and professional standards to join its team of attorneys, detectives, investigators, other professionals, legal support staff, fellows and students. Positions available range from attorneys, detectives and investigators to other professionals such as fellows and students. In addition to performing legal duties, attorneys must work well with others, be able to think strategically and be available at short notice for meetings and events as well as handle stressful situations and high-profile cases; additionally they are responsible for drafting legislation as well as reviewing contracts and agreements made with government.


Attorney generals require excellent research and writing abilities as well as being comfortable working in a fast-paced environment. Their responsibilities may include offering legal advice to government officials, conducting litigation proceedings and researching complex legal matters; their salaries depend on factors like location, education and experience as well as ability to communicate effectively in teams.

Average Attorney General Salary at $100,681 in 2015 or $48, per hour was an increase from 2014’s figure of $88,681. Attorneys differ from federal employees in that their salaries are calculated using the General Schedule Salary Scale authorized under Title 28, U.S.C. The Office of Personnel Management provides Geographic Salary Tables as compensation tables by geographic area; attorneys assigned to high cost areas receive an additional percentage of their base pay as locality pay.

Lewis Brisbois Bisgaard & Smith and Wilson Elser Moskowitz Edelman & Dicker Llp offer some of the highest-paying attorneys general, while State of North Dakota and Iowa State Association of Counties employ some of the lowest-paid ones.

Education requirements

An attorney general is an elected government official tasked with representing their state in legal proceedings. To qualify, this person typically needs both an advanced legal education degree and years of experience working in this field. While exact requirements vary based on jurisdiction, most attorneys obtain their degree from accredited law schools. Furthermore, many work in high-cost areas and receive a percentage of their base pay as locality pay.

Although it may be possible for someone without a law degree to serve as Attorney General, it would likely prove more challenging. Attorney General is more than just an advocate but also plays an influential political role and thus the President would likely choose someone with experience in both management and politics as their candidate for this job.

Education requirements for an attorney general differ by jurisdiction and may include a bachelor’s degree in history or social science followed by an earned Juris Doctor from an American Bar Association-accredited law school. Furthermore, most states mandate candidates are at least 30 years old and resided within their state for at least five years prior to becoming candidates.

Work environment

Attorney general work is demanding, with attorneys expected to manage complex legal matters and various political considerations with efficiency and in high pressure situations. Excellent communication skills are a necessity in this profession.

Attorneys are recruited through a highly competitive, centralized recruitment program that requires applicants to be third year law students, judicial clerks, graduate students participating in qualifying fellowship programs or having completed a judicial externship within nine months of graduating law school. Once applying, applicants should expect an interview within three to six months after submission of an application.

Attorneys typically earn both a base salary and locality pay, which are determined by the cost of living in their region of employment. Attorneys also accrue annual leave based on their length of service in federal government (1-3 years = 13 days/year; 3-15 years = 20/year, and 15+ years=26/years of service = 26 days per year). To gain more insight into salaries and benefits visit the Office of Personnel Management website.