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What Do Paralegals Do?

13th September 2005
By Kent Pinkerton in Legal
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Do you ever wish you could hang out with the crew of Law & Order? Becoming a paralegal is one way to enter the law. It will not be as glamorous as Law & Order, but less glamour does not mean less prestige or satisfaction.

Paralegals make lawyers look prepared. Also known as legal assistants, paralegals may work for a lawyer, but they may also work for a corporation, the government, or any organization that deals with the law. A beginning paralegal will probably spend most of his or her time filing, photocopying, organizing papers and running errands. But paralegals can also do some of the work resembles those exciting crime dramas. Paralegals may help draft legal documents and interview witnesses.

The paralegal profession developed during the 1960s, when people were trained to help lawyers in order to provide legal services to those who could not typically afford them. Paralegals support lawyers and are trained to help law offices run smoothly.

Generally, there are two types of paralegals: litigation and corporate. Litigation paralegals are in charge of documents for trial cases. Most of the routine work that falls to litigation paralegals involves ordering and indexing the huge of amount of paper needed for trials: motions, briefs, depositions, etc. They also interview witnesses, do research, and draft paperwork. Corporate paralegals, on the other hand, spend most of their days organizing the paperwork associated with business dealings. A corporate paralegal, much like a litigation paralegal, makes sure the sets of paperwork are identical, ordering documents, and photocopying them.

The educational background of paralegal will help to determine the type of work he or she will be doing. If, for example, a paralegal took social work classes in college, she may have a better chance of working in a social justice firm or government office firm. Paralegals with some medical knowledge might work for a malpractice lawyer.

Though a paralegal's work may not always seem exciting, it is an excellent way to enter law, and to see if law might be the right career. College graduates, including recent graduates, in addition to those who have taken classes to become a certified paralegal, all have a good chance at finding a paralegal job. Working as a paralegal may help you get into law school and help you make powerful connections with lawyers, businesspeople, or government officials. Even if becoming a paralegal is not your dream job, it can still make for an excellent entry into the professional world.

Paralegals Info provides detailed information about paralegal jobs, schools, training, courses, certificates, and services. Paralegals Info is the sister site of Notary Public Web.
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