What Is a Paralegal
What Does a Paralegal Do | Paralegal Duties

As a legal secretary, I'm always asked, What is a Paralegal? Come in and let me explain the duties of a paralegal and show you exactly what does a paralegal do.

What does a paralegal do, exactly? Yes, we all know they work in law offices (that much is obvious from the title), but how many of us actually know what they are responsible for? What they are capable of? What skills and qualifications are necessary to become one?

In this article I'll tell you the answers to those very questions, beginning with the first: what is a paralegal?

Below is a guest article from our favorite Paralegal expert

What Is a Paralegal: Paralegal Duties

The responsibility of doing legal work rests on the shoulders of lawyers. But with the amount of work that needs to be done with each case, on a daily basis, there's just no way a single lawyer could do the extent of his or her job alone.

So they employ paralegals to carry out the brunt of their paperwork, research, and interviewing.

So what does a paralegal do? These are the primary paralegal duties:

  • To help lawyers prepare before trials

  • To help prepare business meetings and interviews

  • To do vast amounts of legal research and records searching

  • To proofread legal documents for accuracy

  • And so much more

    But they are much more than administrative assistants.

    Paralegals are educated in the field of the law and know a great deal about legal terminology and principles.

    What is a Paralegal and How Can You Become One?

    How do you get a job as a paralegal?

    Well, first things first: you need to be qualified. And this means getting educated.

    In this day and age, more than fifty percent of paralegals hold a bachelor's degree.

    While this is not absolutely necessary for the job itself, a lot of employers are looking to more qualified candidates to fill their positions.

    If you don't have the time or money to get an undergraduate bachelor's degree from a college or university, you can certainly get by with an associate's degree in paralegal studies from a community college or online school.

    This will go a long way towards getting you the paralegal job you want.

    Beyond getting a degree, look to take as many professional training programs, courses, and seminars as you can. The more certificates you have the in the world of paralegal studies, or the law in general, the better your chances will be.

    Once you've gotten some experience under your belt, it's time to start looking for that job.

    But before you start pounding the pavement, do yourself a huge favor and write up a really excellent paralegal resume.

    Having a great paralegal resume (padded with all those certificates, degrees, and training programs you've earned and attended) will get your foot in the door quickly.

    It takes a lot to be a paralegal--you need courage, strength, fortitude, and a fantastic work ethic.

    If you think you have all of those things, along with a desire to make a difference in the world, then nothing should get in your way of becoming a great paralegal.

    Additional Paralegal Job Description Information

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