Do you have a desire to help people win their legal cases? Do you wish to know who is a paralegal? Are you passionate about ensuring justice for others?
If you answered yes to the questions above, then becoming a paralegal might be the right career choice for you.
But you may be curious, what is a paralegal and what do they do?
We are here to provide answers to all of your questions and more. Now, we can begin.
Who Is A Paralegal?
A paralegal is someone who helps lawyers with their work in the legal field.
The everyday tasks of a paralegal include supervising things like submitting trial documents and talking with clients.
Paralegals have to do more than just paperwork. They also have to talk with people, gather statements, and do the tasks their attorneys give them.
Some paralegals help lawyers with their investigations. Assessing proof and getting ready to present arguments in court.
Besides handling the necessary paperwork for lawsuits, these experts can also understand and explain legal papers.
Are Paralegals In Demand?
The need for paralegals is increasing because law firms rely on them a lot.
According to information from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there were 352,800 job openings for Paralegals. These jobs have a median pay of $56,230 per year or $27. 03 per hour
The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) predicts that there will be more job opportunities for paralegals in the next ten years (from 2021 to 2031). They expect the number of jobs to grow by 14%, which is faster than the average.
This means that more people will be needed to work as paralegals all over the country than ever before.
The Skills A Paralegal Requires
There are a lot of skills needed to succeed in this career path. Some of them include:
A Paralegal needs to be able to talk and work well with different people like lawyers and clients.
A paralegal who is good at talking with people can easily talk and explain complicated things (including legal words) in a way that is easy to understand.
In addition, paralegals who are good at talking to people may be asked to handle emails and phone calls, and write different letters and legal documents.
Paralegals typically help lawyers with sorting out files and other paperwork for their legal matters.
They are in charge of planning various events, setting up meetings, managing client information, and keeping track of physical files.
To do well in this job, you need to be very organized and know how to complete different tasks in a methodical way.
Knowledge of the Legal System
A Paralegal needs to understand judgments, statutes, and different legal words really well.
Knowing legal terms well can help Paralegals with many tasks, such as creating documents, understanding them, preparing affidavits, reviewing documents, and sharing legal information with clients and courts.
Being Invested in Details
A paralegal may need to review many files containing information about clients or legal cases. This may sometimes require you to read many pages.
Paying close attention to small details is really important because even a tiny detail can make a big difference in the situation.
Paralegals who are good at managing their time can handle many tasks at once and can meet the court’s strict deadlines.
A law firm likes paralegals who can plan their day and focus on important tasks effectively.
As a paralegal, your job is to help clients and do administrative tasks for law firms. This means you will have many things to do, and you will need to know how to use your time wisely.
We prefer a Paralegal who is skilled and knowledgeable in technical tasks. As a paralegal, you must write down information told by clients, handle payments, and make many reports.
Paralegals should know how to use email, Microsoft Word, and other software to handle important tasks.
Besides having the necessary skills, you also have to meet other qualifications to become a paralegal. These qualifications include completing certain education and obtaining certification.
A paralegal needs to think carefully and use their problem-solving abilities to examine information and data.
Types Of Paralegals
An immigration assistant is needed to help immigrants fill out paperwork to become a citizen. They can also help with:
- Political asylum
- Business immigration
- Work/student visas
A family law paralegal helps lawyers with cases that involve things like:
- Child custody disagreements
- Adoption Process
A family law paralegal needs to collect evidence to get ready for court cases. They should also be understanding and supportive to assist families who are going through emotional problems.
A government paralegal helps government officials at the local, state, or national level. They also have to assist assistant lawyers or city lawyers with their cases. They might also have some other duties, such as:
- Review official military correspondence
- Develop legal programs training materials Presentations at educational seminars
- For existing regulations, review government documents for any compliance
A litigation paralegal is someone who helps a person who wants to sue someone. They have to get ready for the trial by managing electronic evidence and talking to people who saw what happened. Some other tasks that might be required are:
- Analyzing statutes
- Analyzing legal articles
- Analyzing the constitution
- Manage the public perception around a case
- Take notes on behalf of the lawyer in a courtroom
Most of them are employed by a lawyer who specializes in a specific field of law. For example, a lawyer may only handle cases related to bankruptcy or personal injury.
- Health-care laws
- Nursing home abandonment
- Insurance claims
If you have worked in healthcare or know about healthcare laws before, it will be easier for you to handle these responsibilities.
But if you’re new to this, you’ll have to look closely at the rules of the Health care coverage Transportability and Responsibility Act (HIPAA). Also, you should learn about how Federal medical care and Medicaid work.
Knowing these laws will help you support lawyers in investigating violations and act as a go-between for patients and doctors. A nurse paralegal is a person who helps with legal issues in the healthcare field.
Estate Planning Paralegal
If you work as an estate planning and probate paralegal, you might have to help many families understand their money situation and create their wills.
You may also need to meet the families when any of their family members pass away while sorting out and selling their belongings.
What Does A Paralegal Salary Look Like?
Paralegals usually make a lot of money because many industries really need them. But, the amount of money a paralegal gets paid can be different based on where they work, how much experience they have, and the kind of industries they work in.
According to information from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there have been 352,800 job opportunities for Paralegals. They earn a median yearly salary of $56,230, which amounts to $27. 03 per hour
The types of businesses that have the most jobs and pay the best salaries for Paralegals are:
Legal services are provided by professionals and the average estimated income for this field is around $55,690 per year. There are currently around 258,310 people employed in the legal services industry.
The Federal Executive Branch is a group of government workers. They earn around $73,580 on average and there are 15,480 of them.
The government in your local area, other than schools and hospitals, assigns a job designation called Local Government (OEWS). The average pay for this job is around $57,770 and there are about 14,890 people employed in this field.
For paralegals working in management positions at companies and organizations, they can expect to earn around $78,480 per year. There are currently 7,250 jobs available in this field.
Paralegal Salary Compared To Salaries of Other Industries
Companies that work as brokers, insurance providers, or in similar industries, earn a yearly salary of $52,970.
Suppliers who sell goods and wholesalers who sell equipment to businesses earn an annual salary of $48,940.
Outpatient Care Centers pay $44,680 per year.
Mail-Order Houses and Electronic Shopping is a type of job that pays $44,420 per year.
Insurance companies pay their employees called insurance carriers a yearly salary of $44,390.
Paralegals generally earn more money compared to these professions. The jobs listed don’t need a college degree.
If you just finished high school and want to start a job that can pay you more money, you should think about going to a paralegal school.
Top Employment Rated States
- California has 34,710 people employed.
- In simple words: New York has a workforce of 30,400 people.
- Florida has a workforce of 30,000 people.
- Texas has a workforce of 25,780 people.
- Illinois has a workforce of 13,630 people.
Top Average Wage States
- In California, the average wage is $70,290.
- New York has an average salary of $63,270.
- The average salary in Florida is $53,940.
- In Texas, the average yearly income is $56,030.
- In Illinois, the average wage is $60,920.
Ways To Be A Paralegal
Online Course Programs
You can choose to join an online paralegal program, where you can learn about the job of a paralegal in a way that is inexpensive, easy to access, and affordable.
Online course program lets you complete your course in only 4 months, which is much faster than traditional courses that can take several years.
If you’re interested in learning how to become a paralegal and start your career, take a look at this guide that explains the exact steps you need to follow.
A Bachelor Degree
After you finish your two-year schooling, you can choose to continue studying in a bachelor’s program in a similar field to gain more credits.
The first thing you need to do is finish a two-year program to get an associate’s degree in paralegal studies. Many community colleges have programs that can help you become a paralegal.
These programs usually last for two years. These programs help students learn about how the law works and what their job duties would be.
Who is a paralegal? With the information given above, we hope to have answered this question to our best of services.