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Legal Assistant Average Salary in South Africa 2022

How much money does a Legal Assistant make in South Africa?

Average Monthly Salary
16,400 ZAR
( 197,000 ZAR yearly)


A person working as a Legal Assistant in South Africa typically earns around 16,400 ZAR per month. Salaries range from 8,550 ZAR (lowest) to 25,200 ZAR (highest).

This is the average monthly salary including housing, transport, and other benefits. Legal Assistant salaries vary drastically based on experience, skills, gender, or location. Below you will find a detailed breakdown based on many different criteria.

Legal Assistant Salary Distribution in South Africa

Median and salary distribution monthly South Africa Legal Assistant
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The median, the maximum, the minimum, and the range

  • Salary Range

    Legal Assistant salaries in South Africa range from 8,550 ZAR per month (minimum salary) to 25,200 ZAR per month (maximum salary).

  • Median Salary

    The median salary is 15,800 ZAR per month, which means that half (50%) of people working as Legal Assistant(s) are earning less than 15,800 ZAR while the other half are earning more than 15,800 ZAR. The median represents the middle salary value. Generally speaking, you would want to be on the right side of the graph with the group earning more than the median salary.

  • Percentiles

    Closely related to the median are two values: the 25th and the 75th percentiles. Reading from the salary distribution diagram, 25% of Legal Assistant(s) are earning less than 10,900 ZAR while 75% of them are earning more than 10,900 ZAR. Also from the diagram, 75% of Legal Assistant(s) are earning less than 19,600 ZAR while 25% are earning more than 19,600 ZAR.

What is the difference between the median and the average salary?

Both are indicators. If your salary is higher than both of the average and the median then you are doing very well. If your salary is lower than both, then many people are earning more than you and there is plenty of room for improvement. If your wage is between the average and the median, then things can be a bit complicated. We wrote a guide to explain all about the different scenarios. How to compare your salary

Legal Assistant Salary Comparison by Years of Experience

How does experience and age affect your pay?

Salary comparison by years of experience monthly South Africa Legal Assistant
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The experience level is the most important factor in determining the salary. Naturally the more years of experience the higher your wage. We broke down Legal Assistant salaries by experience level and this is what we found.

A Legal Assistant with less than two years of experience makes approximately 9,710 ZAR per month.

While someone with an experience level between two and five years is expected to earn 13,000 ZAR per month, 34% more than someone with less than two year's experience.

Moving forward, an experience level between five and ten years lands a salary of 16,900 ZAR per month, 30% more than someone with two to five years of experience.

On average, a person's salary doubles their starting salary by the time they cross the 10 years* experience mark.
* Based on the average change in salary over time. Salary variations differ from person to person.

Additionally, Legal Assistant(s) whose expertise span anywhere between ten and fifteen years get a salary equivalent to 20,500 ZAR per month, 21% more than someone with five to ten years of experience.

If the experience level is between fifteen and twenty years, then the expected wage is 22,400 ZAR per month, 9% more than someone with ten to fifteen years of experience.

Lastly, employees with more than twenty years of professional experience get a salary of 23,600 ZAR per month, 5% more than people with fifteen to twenty years of experience.

Legal Assistant average salary change by experience in South Africa

0 - 2 Years
9,710 ZAR
2 - 5 Years+34%
13,000 ZAR
5 - 10 Years+30%
16,900 ZAR
10 - 15 Years+21%
20,500 ZAR
15 - 20 Years+9%
22,400 ZAR
20+ Years+5%
23,600 ZAR
Percentage increase and decrease are relative to the previous value

Typical Salary Progress for Most Careers

Salary Comparison By Experience Level
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Legal Assistant Salary Comparison By Gender

Salary comparison by gender monthly South Africa Legal Assistant
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Though gender should not have an effect on pay, in reality, it does. So who gets paid more: men or women? Male Legal Assistant employees in South Africa earn 7% less than their female counterparts on average.

15,900 ZAR
17,200 ZAR
Percentage increase and decrease are relative to the previous value

Salary Comparison By Gender in South Africa for all Careers

Salary comparison by gender monthly South Africa
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Legal Assistant Average Annual Salary Increment Percentage in South Africa

How much are annual salary increments in South Africa for Legal Assistant(s)? How often do employees get salary raises?

Legal Assistant

Legal Assistant(s) in South Africa are likely to observe a salary increase of approximately 10% every 17 months. The national average annual increment for all professions combined is 8% granted to employees every 18 months.

Annual Salary Increment Rate South Africa Legal Assistant
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The figures provided here are averages of numbers. Those figures should be taken as general guidelines. Salary increments will vary from person to person and depend on many factors, but your performance and contribution to the success of the organization remain the most important factors in determining how much and how often you will be granted a raise.

South Africa / All Professions

The term 'Annual Salary Increase' usually refers to the increase in 12 calendar month period, but because it is rarely that people get their salaries reviewed exactly on the one year mark, it is more meaningful to know the frequency and the rate at the time of the increase.

How to calculate the salary increment percentage?

The annual salary Increase in a calendar year (12 months) can be easily calculated as follows: Annual Salary Increase = Increase Rate x 12 ÷ Increase Frequency

The average salary increase in one year (12 months) in South Africa is 5%.

Annual Increment Rate By Industry 2021

Information Technology

Listed above are the average annual increase rates for each industry in South Africa for the year 2021. Companies within thriving industries tend to provide higher and more frequent raises. Exceptions do exist, but generally speaking, the situation of any company is closely related to the economic situation in the country or region. These figures tend to change frequently.

Worldwide Salary Raises: All Countries and All Jobs

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Legal Assistant Bonus and Incentive Rates in South Africa

How much and how often are bonuses being awarded?Annual Salary Bonus Rate South Africa Legal Assistant
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A Legal Assistant is considered to be a moderate bonus-based job due to the generally limited involvement in direct revenue generation, with exceptions of course. The people who get the highest bonuses are usually somehow involved in the revenue generation cycle.

49% of surveyed staff reported that they haven't received any bonuses or incentives in the previous year while 51% said that they received at least one form of monetary bonus.

Those who got bonuses reported rates ranging from 3% to 5% of their annual salary.

Received Bonus
No Bonus

Types of Bonuses Considered

Individual Performance-Based Bonuses

The most standard form of bonus where the employee is awarded based on their exceptional performance.

Company Performance Bonuses

Occasionally, some companies like to celebrate excess earnings and profits with their staff collectively in the form of bonuses that are granted to everyone. The amount of the bonus will probably be different from person to person depending on their role within the organization.

Goal-Based Bonuses

Granted upon achieving an important goal or milestone.

Holiday / End of Year Bonuses

These types of bonuses are given without a reason and usually resemble an appreciation token.

Bonuses Are Not Commissions!

People tend to confuse bonuses with commissions. A commission is a prefixed rate at which someone gets paid for items sold or deals completed while a bonus is in most cases arbitrary and unplanned.

What makes a position worthy of good bonuses and a high salary?

The main two types of jobs

Revenue GeneratorsSupporting Cast

Employees that are directly involved in generating revenue or profit for the organization. Their field of expertise usually matches the type of business.

Employees that support and facilitate the work of revenue generators. Their expertise is usually different from that of the core business operations.

A graphics designer working for a graphics designing company.

A graphic designer in the marketing department of a hospital.

Revenue generators usually get more and higher bonuses, higher salaries, and more frequent salary increments. The reason is quite simple: it is easier to quantify your value to the company in monetary terms when you participate in revenue generation.

Try to work for companies where your skills can generate revenue. We can't all generate revenue and that's perfectly fine.

Bonus Comparison by Seniority Level

Top management personnel and senior employees naturally exhibit higher bonus rates and frequencies than juniors. This is very predictable due to the inherent responsibilities of being higher in the hierarchy. People in top positions can easily get double or triple bonus rates than employees down the pyramid.

Legal Assistant Average Hourly Wage in South Africa

95 ZAR per hour

The average hourly wage (pay per hour) in South Africa is 95 ZAR. This means that the average Legal Assistant in South Africa earns approximately 95 ZAR for every worked hour.

Hourly Wage = Annual Salary ÷ ( 52 x 5 x 8 )

The hourly wage is the salary paid in one worked hour. Usually jobs are classified into two categories: salaried jobs and hourly jobs. Salaried jobs pay a fix amount regardless of the hours worked. Hourly jobs pay per worked hour. To convert salary into hourly wage the above formula is used (assuming 5 working days in a week and 8 working hours per day which is the standard for most jobs). The hourly wage calculation may differ slightly depending on the worked hours per week and the annual vacation allowance. The figures mentioned above are good approximations and are considered to be the standard. One major difference between salaried employees and hourly paid employees is overtime eligibility. Salaried employees are usually exempt from overtime as opposed to hourly paid staff.

Legal Assistant VS Other Jobs

Salary Comparison Between Legal Assistant and Legal monthly South Africa
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The average salary for Legal Assistant is 56% less than that of Legal. Also, Legal salaries are 21% more than those of All Jobs.

Salary comparison with similar jobs

Job TitleAverage Salary
Administrative Law Judge86,700 ZAR+430%
Arbitrator41,600 ZAR+150%
Associate Attorney43,400 ZAR+160%
Attorney61,000 ZAR+270%
Bailiff19,400 ZAR+18%
Barrister17,300 ZAR+5%
Candidate Attorney35,600 ZAR+120%
Conciliator31,100 ZAR+89%
Contracts Manager36,100 ZAR+120%
Contracts Negotiator28,800 ZAR+75%
Conveyancing Secretary17,000 ZAR+3%
Corporate Counsel45,600 ZAR+180%
Counsel46,800 ZAR+180%
Court Clerk14,600 ZAR-11%
Court Judicial Assistant24,300 ZAR+48%
Court Liaison Specialist28,200 ZAR+72%
Court Reporter23,200 ZAR+41%
Court Representative19,500 ZAR+19%
Crown Prosecution Service Lawyer83,800 ZAR+410%
Immigration Executive41,900 ZAR+150%
In House Counsel45,400 ZAR+180%
Intellectual Property Specialist31,100 ZAR+89%
Judge Advocate69,500 ZAR+320%
Law Clerk14,000 ZAR-15%
Lawyer60,600 ZAR+270%
Legal Administrative Assistant16,500 ZAR+0%
Legal Advisor37,800 ZAR+130%
Legal Assistant16,400 ZAR-0%
Legal Associate30,600 ZAR+86%
Legal Consultant37,800 ZAR+130%
Legal Counsel44,800 ZAR+170%
Legal Editor29,100 ZAR+77%
Legal Executive60,600 ZAR+270%
Legal Executive Secretary17,000 ZAR+3%
Legal IP Officer15,400 ZAR-6%
Legal Officer19,400 ZAR+18%
Legal Services Director70,500 ZAR+330%
Legal Services Manager70,700 ZAR+330%
Legal Support Worker12,600 ZAR-23%
Legislative Liaison29,500 ZAR+79%
Litigation Attorney81,400 ZAR+400%
Litigation Paralegal37,800 ZAR+130%
Magistrate Judge93,000 ZAR+470%
Paralegal23,500 ZAR+43%
Patent Attorney48,100 ZAR+190%
Staff Attorney48,100 ZAR+190%

Salary Comparison By City

CityAverage Salary
Bloemfontein14,900 ZAR
Cape Town19,400 ZAR
Durban18,800 ZAR
Johannesburg16,600 ZAR
Port Elizabeth16,300 ZAR
Pretoria16,500 ZAR

Government vs Private Sector Salary Comparison

Where can you get paid more, working for a private company or for the government? Public sector employees in South Africa earn 7% more than their private sector counterparts on average across all sectors.

Private Sector
30,200 ZAR
Public Sector+7%
32,300 ZAR
Percentage increase and decrease are relative to the previous value

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