The Paralegal career began as a profession to help attorneys in law firms be relieved of the extra load of work due to research that is involved in different cases. Over the years the position has grown not only to include law firms but other positions such as nurse paralegals.
- The Paralegal is responsible for research work.
- The Paralegal is responsible for drafting reports and applications
- The Paralegal is responsible to report to their supervisor any unusual facts about the case.
The paralegal works not only in law firms but often work in the medical field or a corporation. It saves the corporations a lot of legal fees by having a Paralegal who can research and draft the first essential legal papers required especially when it comes to filing for patents etc. The Paralegal that works in the medical field must have formal education and training in medicine. Many medical paralegals start out as a nurse because this will give them the background in medical terms and understanding forms in that field.
The position of Paralegal is often mistaken as a person who is working as an intern to become an attorney, however, this is far from the truth as they do not have the right to legally represent you in court. The Paralegal is there to help back up the attorney with research and some documentation that will help with the case load. The actual representation is done by an attorney. The Paralegal is capable of knowing the law and often can advise you to a certain extent.
The Paralegal is the one who does the research work for legal litigation in patent filing. Many times the Patent Paralegal researches, does the filing and can represent the client when it comes to filing of a patent. The Patent Paralegal is considering being the highest paid in the legal administration. The Patent Paralegal must have a great deal of training above the normal Paralegal who works for an Attorney. Patent Paralegals usually work at law firms, corporations or universities holding a high ranking position with a large salary. The work is much more complicated as they need to know the patent laws which are very complicated. The patent laws change frequently depending on the product that is to be patented. The cost of having an attorney deal with this for corporations is still very expensive and that is why they would prefer to have a Patent Paralegal.
The Paralegal who is successful has a Bachelor’s Degree and it is estimated that over 50% do. Normally Paralegals have taken a form of approved Paralegal Studies. It is estimated that about 70% of Paralegals are employed at law firms. The average salary for a good Paralegal is over $44K a year. It is estimated that over 90% of Paralegals are female with a growth of male Paralegals in the near future. Many Paralegals are going from law firms to corporations, universities, and insurance agencies.
A Paralegal must have a good knowledge of research skills on the computer, able to read extensive legal documentations with a good comprehension of facts. A Paralegal is required to be able to compile reports showing facts and figures, make out documentations in regards to court procedures and report findings to their superior with full knowledge of all the important information. A Paralegal must have good computer skills and internet capability. Communication skills are vital for a Paralegal because they must be able to successfully question clients getting information concerning the litigation that is helpful to the attorney. They must also be able to relay the information in an informative manner to the attorney without using a lot of if’s, ands and buts’. “Just the Facts” are all that most attorneys require from their Paralegal.
The useful Paralegal keeps up with the economy, laws, and information regarding their field of studies. Training for a Paralegal can be done at a University, Community College or online. You can get information about your course of study by doing a little bit of research work. This will give you practice in using the SEO system of the internet. In order to be a successful Paralegal you should strive to get a Bachelor’s Degree and select a field of interest in the profession.