Mark your calendar for July 26th and do something nice for yourself; that is officially Paralegal Day in Pennsylvania. Perhaps the only state in the nation to have such a day, you can even look forward to Paralegal Week. Paralegals have been fêting themselves since 2002 when the governor declared these events, and for good reason. Pennsylvania has the sixth-highest number of paralegal jobs in the nation —11,870, as of May 2020.
Why the strong numbers for paralegals in PA? For one thing, Pennsylvania has a strong legal tradition that’s as old as the country. We’ve got Independence Hall and the Liberty Bell, two great symbols of our nation of laws. What makes the state amazing for paralegals is the diversity we have among our significant players in the legal sector, which are strongly represented throughout the state:
- Law firms – PA has great law firms everywhere, especially in Philadelphia which is home to the six out of ten largest firms in the state.
- Corporate legal teams – PA is the headquarters of major companies like Comcast in Philadelphia, United States Steel in Pittsburgh, and Rite Aid near Harrisburg.
- Unified Judicial System of Pennsylvania – PA has one of the largest unified state court systems in the nation that includes municipal courts, courts of common pleas, commonwealth court, superior court, and the supreme court
Paralegal Job Market Trends in Pennsylvania
As of May 2020, the average salary for paralegals in Pennsylvania was $58,490, which is about $2,000 higher than the national average for this profession. But with experience and the credentials that today’s biggest employers demand, there’s plenty of room for growth if you’re a paralegal in the Keystone State. In fact, the top 10% of paralegals here earn about $84,340.
More interesting news: Pennsylvania paralegals beat out their colleagues in the neighboring states of Ohio ($49,720), West Virginia ($52,680), and Maryland ($56,710) in terms of average salaries during this time.
Average Paralegal Salary in Pennsylvania by City
The Philadelphia-Camden-Wilmington metro area is ranked seventh in the nation for its employment level of paralegals, as of May 2020. It’s also where paralegals in the state earn one of the highest average salaries, although Pittsburgh came out on top in the state for its average salary of paralegals.
Average – $51,070 ($24.55 hourly)
Top 10% – $75,240 ($36.18 hourly)
Average – $36,160 ($17.38 hourly)
Top 10% – $47,660 ($22.91 hourly)
Average – $52,280 ($25.13 hourly)
Top 10% – $73,360 ($35.27 hourly)
Average – $59,860 ($28.78 hourly)
Top 10% – $88,140 ($42.37 hourly)
Average – $61,200 ($29.42 hourly)
Top 10% – $81,020 ($38.95 hourly)
Average – $55,540 ($26.70 hourly)
Top 10% – $79,170 ($38.06 hourly)
Average – $49,820 ($23.95 hourly)
Top 10% – $70,270 ($33.78 hourly)
Average – $38,830 ($18.67 hourly)
Top 10% – $65,380 ($31.43 hourly)
Average – $51,970 ($24.99 hourly)
Top 10% – $90,080 ($43.31 hourly)
May 2020 Bureau of Labor Statistics salary, growth, and job market trends for paralegals and legal assistants. Figures represent state data, not school specific information. Conditions in your area may vary. Data accessed December 2021.