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Paralegal Job Description

Paralegals, or legal assistants, as they are sometimes called, help lawyers in carrying out their duties and perform many of the same tasks that lawyers do.

Paralegal Job Duties & Responsibilities

A paralegal’s job responsibilities can be wide and varied. Their duties include helping lawyers prepare for trails, hearings, meetings and closings.

Paralegals also help lawyers prepare reports and legal arguments and to identify appropriate judicial decisions and laws to help prepare for a case.

Often they are required to analyze previous cases and use the information to help lawyers prepare motions, and file pleadings, affidavits and legal arguments.

Paralegals who work at corporate entities are often required to help in other functions such as preparing tax returns, planning estates, drafting contracts and maintaining financial records.

Paralegal Job Demand

The demand for paralegal jobs continues to be steady, though competition is high.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the number of available paralegal jobs in the country is expected to grow at 28 percent annual between now and 2018.

Increasingly, many of those being hired as paralegals are performing jobs that once used to be performed only by lawyers.

Paralegal Career Training

Those wishing to pursue paralegal careers typically need to acquire a degree or diploma in paralegal studies.

Those with a degree in a related field will need to obtain a certificate in paralegal studies in order to be able to work as one.

Currently as many as 1000 universities, law schools and private schools offer diploma and certificate courses for those interested in pursuing paralegal careers.

Paralegal Income Information

Paralegals are relatively well paid with average salaries ranging from $45,000 to nearly $60,000 according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

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