A paralegal is in many respects a highly trained lawyer’s assistant that has a strong background in working within the legal system. There job is to perform many of the tasks a regular lawyer would do however paralegals are not authorised to give legal advice. This means that much of the lime light is on the lawyer which is what attracts some people to becoming a paralegal.
If, like many, you are looking to get into a career as a paralegal then there are number of things you may want to consider. The first and foremost is the type of work you will be expected to carry out. Lawyers depend on their paralegals to manage a range of activities for their clients including account management. On the other side paralegals can also be asked to perform case investigations and witness interviews under the instructions of a lawyer. This is a part of the job that excites many.
Paralegal jobs also offer a great opportunity for people who are looking to develop their legal skills on streamlining procedures for cases. This skill is one of the things law firms and lawyers look for when hiring a paralegal. They are interested in people who have knowledge of various different backgrounds and who are well rounded. This provides the opportunity for paralegals to work in a range of areas and provides diversity to the job role.
Although paralegal jobs are highly sort after working hours can be long and unsociable. Deadlines are often tight however the salaries are high in this sector and paralegals are highly regarded within society. The varied work and flexible working options are also highly attractive. For example the government is often looking to use freelance paralegals and your options after a career as a paralegal are very strong.
As with any role there are a number of core skills you are required to possess to become a paralegal. One of the most important is good communication skills. You not only need to be able to understand the terminology but also be able to speak and write in an accurate and effective manner. Candidates also need to be proficient computer users and be able to work well with others. As a result a great level of training is required and a degree at a well established university.
These are some of the fundamentals you may want to look at when thinking about a career as a paralegal. It is also worth noting that you will need to continually update your skills and is a job that is more suited to some than others. Having said this it is one that is highly rewarding and provides plenty of challenges for driven individuals
If a paralegal job isn’t for you then you might want to consider the one of many different types of legal careers. This ranges from everything from clerk to high power lawyer with each presenting their own opportunities. Whichever you decide the legal sector is an exciting sector to work within and is thriving in the UK.