Life As a Paralegal or Legal Assistant
Job Description & Duties Assist lawyers by investigating facts, preparing legal documents, or researching legal precedent. Conduct research to support a legal proceeding, to formulate a defense, or to initiate legal action.
A Day in the Life of a Paralegal or Legal Assistant
- Prepare for trial by performing tasks such as organizing exhibits.
- Keep and monitor legal volumes to ensure that law library is up-to-date.
- Prepare legal documents, including briefs, pleadings, appeals, wills, contracts, and real estate closing statements.
- Gather and analyze research data, such as statutes, decisions, and legal articles, codes, and documents.
- Direct and coordinate law office activity, including delivery of subpoenas.
- Call upon witnesses to testify at hearing.
What a Paralegal or Legal Assistant Should Know
Below is a list of the skills most Paralegals and Legal Assistants say are important on the job.
Reading Comprehension: Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
Active Listening: Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
Writing: Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.
Speaking: Talking to others to convey information effectively.
Critical Thinking: Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
Active Learning: Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.
Related Job Titles
- Real Estate Closer
- Legal Aide
- Real Estate Paralegal
- Legal Assistant
- Litigation Legal Assistant
What Kind of Paralegal or Legal Assistant Job Opportunities Are There?
In 2016, there was an estimated number of 285,600 jobs in the United States for Paralegal or Legal Assistant. New jobs are being produced at a rate of 14.6% which is above the national average. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts 41,800 new jobs for Paralegal or Legal Assistant by 2026. The BLS estimates 34,700 yearly job openings in this field.
The states with the most job growth for Paralegal or Legal Assistant are Nevada, Utah, and Colorado. Watch out if you plan on working in Alaska, Ohio, or Maryland. These states have the worst job growth for this type of profession.
What is the Average Salary of a Paralegal or Legal Assistant
The typical yearly salary for Paralegals and Legal Assistants is somewhere between $31,400 and $82,050.
Paralegals and Legal Assistants who work in District of Columbia, Connecticut, or Alaska, make the highest salaries.
Below is a list of the median annual salaries for Paralegals and Legal Assistants in different U.S. states.
|State||Annual Mean Salary|
|District of Columbia||$80,470|
What Tools do Paralegals and Legal Assistants Use?
Below is a list of the types of tools and technologies that Paralegals and Legal Assistants may use on a daily basis:
- Microsoft Excel
- Microsoft Word
- Microsoft Office
- Microsoft PowerPoint
- Microsoft Outlook
- Web browser software
- Microsoft Access
- Data entry software
- Word processing software
- Microsoft Project
- Adobe Systems Adobe Acrobat
- Spreadsheet software
- Microsoft SharePoint
- IBM Notes
- Microsoft Publisher
- Google Docs
- Intuit QuickBooks
- Google Drive
How do I Become a Paralegal or Legal Assistant?
Learn what Paralegal or Legal Assistant education requirements there are.
How Long Does it Take to Become a Paralegal or Legal Assistant?
Where Paralegals and Legal Assistants Are Employed
Paralegals and Legal Assistants work in the following industries:
More about our data sources and methodologies.
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