How to Spend Your BigLaw Bonus
Greedy associates rejoice! It's that time of year when annual bonuses are announced, and hopefully, you're getting one. Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP has announced that its junior attorneys will be receiving bonuses ranging from $10,000 to $60,000, depending on associate class, according to The Wall Street Journal. While some are lamenting the fact that bonuses are the same, there are others who are just happy to be employed and getting a bonus, according to Above the Law.
We're betting whether you're satisfied or not with your bonus, it will probably be spent before you even receive it. If you're at a loss for how to spend your bonus, let us give you a few suggestions.
1. Pay Your Loans
If you're one of those people chained to BigLaw because of overwhelming student debt, then try to buy your freedom -- by paying down your law school debt. Write a big check to Sallie Mae with "principal only" written in the memo -- lower your principal, and overall debt in one fell swoop. It's like you never had the money, but you may take a year off of your BigLaw servitude.
Take. A. Vacation. It doesn't have to be anywhere tropical or glamorous (though that helps), just take some time off. Hell, you can even go on a "staycation." The main thing is to relax. Whether you travel, or just schedule a massage at the local spa, take some "me" time -- you worked hard for it.
If you've been billing the kind of hours that BigLaw expects, then you probably don't have time for -- anything. Take your bonus check and as Beyonce says, upgrade you. Move into a nicer apartment, get some new clothes, or how about a new set of wheels? There must be something in your life that you can upgrade -- now's the time.
It's the season of giving, and it's always a nice idea to give back to your community. It only takes a few minutes to find a non-profit or charity whose cause you want to support, and make a donation. Not only will you be helping those in need, but you'll get a little tax write-off to lower your post-bonus income.
Maybe you racked up lots of credit card debt for the eight days of Hanukkah, or maybe you're just starting your Christmas shopping, either way, it's also the season of gift giving. Share the love and get your family and loved ones some awesome presents -- they deserve it for putting up with your work hours.
There are many ways to spend your bonus, and only one way to save -- don't spend. If that's more your style, then by all means, save away. Either way, enjoy your bonus, and here's to hopefully bigger bonuses (and more jobs to go around) in 2014.
How are you spending your bonus? Tweet us @FindLawLP.
- 2012 Year-End Bonuses Looking Better Than Last Year's (FindLaw's Greedy Associates Blog)
- BigLaw Big Love: Bonus Season Begins (FindLaw's Greedy Associates Blog)
- Latest BigLaw Perks: Free iPads (FindLaw's Greedy Associates Blog)
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