Lawyers in region short on pay
LIKE many career-driven professionals, the big cities of Sydney or Melbourne are the starting points for many lawyers.
But after a while, the insanely competitive environment and overwhelming workload take their toll and the need for change arises.
That’s why legal professionals take refuge in the Northern Rivers.
A report by the Law and Justice Foundation of NSW found the state had a dire shortage of lawyers, particularly in rural and regional areas.
According to the report, Recruitment and Retention of Lawyers in Rural and Remote NSW, there were 261 solicitors in the Richmond-Tweed area in 2009, compared to 16972 in Sydney.
But life could not be peachier in the Northern Rivers.
Lismore solicitor Jim Fuggle escaped to the region from Sydney’s hustle and bustle 20 years ago, like many of his fellow solicitors.
“We are very well-catered for, lawyers up here,” he said.
“The biggest difference between the country and the city is you can make as much money as you want in the city but in the regional areas it’s limited on the nature of the towns and their economies.”
The Richmond-Tweed area has the highest rate of solicitors per 100,000 residents outside of Sydney and the Hunter
Only 6.6% of solicitors in NSW practise in rural, regional or remote areas
Nineteen local government areas in NSW did not have a practising lawyer in 2009
While most career-driven professionals start out in Melbourne and Sydney, many find a sea change or tree change refreshing.