Slaughters, White & Case and Matrix join converts to Living Wage

Slaughter and May, White & Case and Matrix Chambers are among the latest legal outfits to have committed to paying the Living Wage to their lowest-paid staff, including all outsourced employees.

The trio have joined a growing number of law firms, including Linklaters, Clifford Chance, Herbert Smith Freehills and Olswang, to have been accredited by the Living Wage Foundation (LWF).

The Living Wage is calculated according to the basic cost of living in the UK, with accredited bodies agreeing to pay the rate as a minimum to all employees and contractors. It currently stands at £8.55 per hour in London and £7.45 outside of the capital, compared to the current minimum wage, which sits at £6.19.

Mark Humphries Legal, the disputes boutique led by former Linklaters advocacy chief Mark Humphries (pictured), recently joined the scheme, while London’s Garden Court Chambers has also signed up, with the move resulting in salary increases for some of the set’s more junior permanent staff.

A spokesperson for White & Case said: “We are committed to being a responsible employer and the London Living Wage is an important part of this effort. We want our work environment to be a productive one, and rewarding at all levels.”

Other representatives from the legal profession accredited by LWF last year include Mishcon de Reya, Lewis Silkin, Bates Wells & Braithwaite, 11 King’s Bench Walk Chambers and London education law firm Match Solicitors.

Linklaters is also one of LWF’s six principal partners, alongside KPMG, Save the Children and Queen Mary’s University London – a role which sees the firm provide both financial and strategic support in encouraging other employers to sign up to the scheme.

LWF cites research that a living wage benefits not only employees, but business and society in general. Pointing to independent studies, the organisation says more than 80% of employers believe the Living Wage has enhanced the quality of the work of their staff, with corresponding falls in absenteeism and turnover of contractors, as well as improvements in recruitment and retention.