What Does a Paralegal Do?
For a long time, the paralegal arena has remained a strong source of jobopportunities, and it is expected to grow in the coming years. First appearing in the mid-1960s, more than two-thirds of all lawyers use paralegals and that number is on the rise.
Over the years, the profession has gained great respect and become a cornerstone of thelegal profession as paralegals continue to assume new responsibilities. Paralegals areable to work in many areas of the law and in all types of organizations, from law firms tocorporate legal departments to various government offices.While paralegals perform different jobs in each position, there are tasks thatalmost all paralegals perform.One of a paralegal’s most important tasks is helping lawyersprepare for closings, hearings, trials and corporate meetings.Paralegals might investigate the facts of cases and ensure allrelevant information is considered. They also identify appropriatelaws, judicial decisions, legal articles, and other materials relevantto assigned cases. After they analyze and organize theinformation, paralegals may prepare written reports that attorneysuse when determining how cases should be handled.
According to the American Bar Association (ABA), “Paralegals enhance theability of law firms to provide more pro bono legal services just as they do paidservices.”
A well-trained paralegal can make a law firm more profitable as well ascontribute to the good of a community.The ABA says that paralegals should have excellent organizational skills and bedetail-minded and able to multitask. Good oral and written communication skills are amust. And, of course, a paralegal should have an interest in the law and empathy forclients.