Each year, U.S. News and World Report comes out with a ranking of the 100 best jobs in the nation, based on important factors like median salary, employment rate, growth over the next 10 years, future job prospects, stress level, and work-life balance. With criteria like that, it makes sense that in 2022, the job of “Lawyer” is ranked quite highly on the list of the Top 100.
While U.S. News once ranked Lawyer as a worse job than Nail Technician in the wake of the Great Recession, in the pandemic era, being a lawyer ranks as one of the best jobs of all. To keep this ranking familiar for lawyers who love the U.S. News law school rankings, check out the Top 14 Best Jobs for 2022:
- Information Security Analyst
- Nurse Practitioner
- Physician Assistant
- Medical and Health Services Manager
- Software Developer
- Data Scientist
- Financial Manager
- Speech-Language Pathologist
- Registered Nurse
- IT Manager
- Market Research Analyst
Congratulations, lawyers! In 2022, there are literally not enough of you to go around to complete the legal work that needs to be done, so the job market is hot, and salaries are even hotter. Not only is Lawyer ranked #9 in the Top 100 best jobs, but it came in at #1 in Best Social Service Jobs and at #18 for Best Paying Jobs, with a median salary of $126,930. (Your mother was right — you should’ve been a doctor. Outside of working in Biglaw, the pay is much better.)
But please be careful when pursuing this career, because there is a major downside to being a lawyer that current attorneys already know far too well. “A lawyer’s work is often grueling, involving long hours at the office,” notes U.S. News. Now, thanks to COVID-19, when your home is your office and your office is your home, the concept of work-life balance is no more, and it can make the life of a lawyer even more stressful than it was pre-pandemic.
Mental health concerns aside — heh, aren’t those always an aside for lawyers? — the Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that between 2020 and 2030, about 71,500 jobs will open up for lawyers. You spent all of that money on a law degree, so come grab a job while the market is hot (before all those who decided to go to law school during the pandemic graduate and gum up the works).
Way to go for having such a prestigious career, lawyers!
100 Best Jobs of 2022 [U.S. News & World Report]
Staci Zaretsky is a senior editor at Above the Law, where she’s worked since 2011. She’d love to hear from you, so please feel free to email her with any tips, questions, comments, or critiques. You can follow her on Twitter or connect with her on LinkedIn.