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Salaries at King & Spalding are determined according to a fixed, lockstep system. Currently, the first-year associates take home a base salary of $160,000 in the bigger legal markets and about $135,000 in the smaller ones. As was the case with many of the law firms, King & Spalding froze salaries in 2009 and in August of the same year, it announced that the attorney salaries would rely more on bonuses in order to reward individual performance. However, in recent times, this freeze has been lifted and the attorney salaries have been raised to market levels in most of its offices. Most of the firm's associates receive a base bonus when they achieve a billable of 2,050 hours, and the fourth-year and senior associates are eligible for an additional discretionary bonus. All associates are also eligible for an uncapped incremental bonus for each hour billed over the minimum of 2,050 hours; this bonus ranges from $30 per hour for the first-year attorneys to about $100 an hour for the eighth-year associates.