2. Bingham McCutchen
Bingham McCutchen
Average total pay: $228,851
For: Associate*
Best companies rank: 30

Bring your friends to Bingham McCutchen. If landing a job with top pay isn't enough, the law firm's employees can collect up to $25,000 for helping colleagues get jobs there too.

Bingham's bonus bonanza rolls on. Early last year, the firm gave its associate attorneys merit pay between $7,500 and $35,000. A few months later, the firm handed out a special Spring Bonus of between $2,500 and $20,000. In 2010, Bingham paid out $9 million in associate bonuses alone.

For retirement, Bingham will contribute up to 12.5% of employees' compensation into a money-purchase pension plan. Its employees give plenty back, too. The firm's lawyers performed more than 57,000 hours of pro bono work in 2010. For animal-loving employees and partners, Bingham offers voluntary pet insurance at a group discounted rate.

*Most common salaried job
By Robert Levering and Milton Moskowitz @FortuneMagazine - Last updated January 24 2012: 2:54 PM ET
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