You have probably heard of a paralegal before. Whether you have heard of one because you are interested in becoming one or simply because you are curious as to what they do, you are in the right place! Keep reading so that we can answer the question of what does a paralegal do.
It’s first important to explain what a paralegal is in full before we dive into the exact details of it. A paralegal is in the law field. It helps a lawyer with some of the busy work. The great part about being a paralegal is that there are no two days the same. You do a variety of different tasks and learn so much in the process.
Another great thing about being a paralegal is that you don’t need to have a full four-year degree. Although you can in law, most lawyers love when you have your paralegal course. During the course, you will learn more terms, how to write as a paralegal and some of the tasks that are expected of you. It’s important to take this course and look up a great one and you will have a much better chance of getting a job. By taking a course as opposed to a full degree, you will end up in less debt and be on your way to a thriving career a lot faster.
Now, we are going to dive into more about being a paralegal and some of the tasks they do on a regular basis.
A paralegal plays a very important role in the entire legal team when it comes to defending or prosecuting someone. They do perform many of the administrative tasks as well as others to assist the lawyer in everything they have on their plate. A paralegal needs to have an understanding of the entire legal system so that they do everything correctly and legally. By assisting the lawyer, you are allowing them to focus on other areas of their job to help win the case. This can also help the client save money as a paralegal doesn’t cost as much as a lawyer.
There are many tasks that a paralegal will perform on a regular basis. Some of these include case management and ensuring everything is being completed on time. Another will be calculating the deadlines of documents. Some need to go into the system before others. It’s important for a paralegal to stay on top of these and stay organized. A lot of the time, the paralegal will use an automation system to prepare the different cases. Because of this, they need to be able to work the different systems inside the computer. A paralegal will also find themselves drafting up different pleads as well as documenting responses for different clients. They also will be in charge of checking the facts. Whether that is a recording or paperwork and performing legal research in the process. Finally, they contact and speak with a lot of the clients and speak with the clients on behalf of the lawyer.
A paralegal performs many different tasks. Although they vary on a day to day basis, they also end up being similar, but for different clients. It can feel overwhelming at first but once you get into the swing of it, it can be a very fast paced and fun career. A lot of the time a paralegal will either be on the road, in court or in an office helping with administrative duties.
Paralegals make a good living wage. Although they are in no way a secretary, they may find themselves sitting in front of a computer typing a lot of the time which can feel like legal secretary work a lot of the time. The good news is that they get paid better.
One great characteristic lawyers love when working with a paralegal, and while searching for a good one is that they are organized. Since they need to be on top of different deadlines and filings, it’s important that they stay on top of this and have an organized system. It’s also important that they keep the lawyer organized too. They will really appreciate it and although it may not be something you learn during the course, it’s something to keep in mind that you want to develop a system. This means that it’s important to clear your work station at the end of each day and keep the lawyer in the know about anything important that will help them during their workday. If you are not naturally organized, that’s okay. You can speak with a paralegal about how they like to stay organized and keep their clients and lawyers they work with organized.
As you can see, being a paralegal is a fun and rewarding career. It is a way to still work in law and be a part of a court case without having to go through as much school and become a lawyer. You rarely will have two days the same in your entire career and you are always getting to learn about different court cases and interview different people. Many people that become a paralegal love their job and love the fast-paced environment. We hope that this article helped and you either learned more about being a paralegal or you now find yourself on the way to your new career. Enjoy!