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August 05, 2019

ABA to release first Profile of the Legal Profession, a collection of stats and trends

CHICAGO, Aug. 5, 2019 – Looking for authoritative numbers on the legal profession? The American Bar Association has you covered.

On Aug. 10, the ABA will release the first ABA Profile of the Legal Profession – a 100-page compendium of statistics and trends. The report will include sections on demographics, wages, law schools and law students, federal judges, pro bono work, women in the profession, legal technology, lawyer well-being and lawyer discipline.

“This report is an important reference for anyone who wants to understand where the legal profession came from and where it stands today,” ABA President Bob Carlson said.

Among the many facts in the report:

  • There are 1.3 million lawyers in the United States, and 1 in 4 are in just two states (New York and California).
  • Nearly half of all law school graduates take jobs at law firms, but 12% go to work for the government and 1% start a solo practice.
  • 1 out of 3 law school deans are women. In 2000, it was 1 in 10. 

  • The average lawyer provides 37 hours a year of volunteer services to low-income clients who cannot afford a lawyer. 

  • 1 in 4 lawyers say their law firm has experienced a computer security breach, but only 1 in 3 law firms has cyber liability insurance. 

The ABA Profile of the Legal Profession will be released at 2 p.m. Aug. 10 at the ABA Annual Meeting in San Francisco. At the release program, a panel of ABA experts will discuss recent trends in diversity, technology, legal education and women in the profession. 

The report will be available online at that time at For more information, contact Marc Davis at [email protected]. 

With more than 400,000 members, the American Bar Association is one of the largest voluntary professional membership organizations in the world. As the national voice of the legal profession, the ABA works to improve the administration of justice, promotes programs that assist lawyers and judges in their work, accredits law schools, provides continuing legal education, and works to build public understanding around the world of the importance of the rule of law. View our privacy statement online. Follow the latest ABA news at and on Twitter @ABANews.