What is 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.
Life As a Paralegal or Legal Assistant
- Direct and coordinate law office activity, including delivery of subpoenas.
- Prepare for trial by performing tasks such as organizing exhibits.
- File pleadings with court clerk.
- Keep and monitor legal volumes to ensure that law library is up-to-date.
- Investigate facts and law of cases and search pertinent sources, such as public records and internet sources, to determine causes of action and to prepare cases.
- Prepare affidavits or other documents, such as legal correspondence, and organize and maintain documents in paper or electronic filing system.
Paralegal or Legal Assistant Needed Skills
These are the skills Paralegals and Legal Assistants say are the most useful in their careers:
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
- Immigration Specialist
- Legal Aide
- Corporate Law Assistant
- Law Associate
- Research Analyst
What Kind of Paralegal or Legal Assistant Job Opportunities Are There?
There were about 285,600 jobs for Paralegal or Legal Assistant in 2016 (in the United States). 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. There will be an estimated 34,700 positions for Paralegal or Legal Assistant per year.
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.
How Much Does a Paralegal or Legal Assistant Make?
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.
How much do Paralegals and Legal Assistants make in each U.S. state?
|State||Annual Mean Salary|
|District of Columbia||$80,470|
Tools & Technologies Used by Paralegals and Legal Assistants
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?
What education or degrees do I need to become a Paralegal or Legal Assistant?
What work experience do I need 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.