From the tasks that paralegals typically take on to the advice for hiring and working with paralegals, this blog post covers the main benefits lawyers can gain from working with paralegals. With a better understanding of what a legal advisor can actually offer, you can make more informed decisions when considering adding legal counsel to your team. Now that we understand “what a legal assistant is,” we understand that most lawyers and law firms can benefit from the assistance of a legal assistant. But hiring full-time legal counsel isn`t always the best solution, especially for small businesses. In these cases, turning to an independent or virtual legal assistant is an effective solution that allows companies to delegate routine and time-consuming support tasks to a legal assistant when needed. The average salary for legal assistants is $44,730, which translates to about $21.51 per hour. As you might expect, more experience warrants higher salaries. The highest paid legal secretaries can earn up to $76,500. Working with an external paralegal to take over the substantive work and an independent legal assistant can ease the workload of a lawyer. Lawyers can recover many billable hours that would have been lost on administrative tasks. In addition, lawyers can spend more time on substantive legal work, growing their business, or taking care of clients. The best thing about working with an independent legal assistant is that you don`t have the hassle of hiring a full-time employee.
The need for paralegals and others in this field is growing faster than in other professions in the United States. As demand increases, so do the skills required for this position. As part of a paralegal job description, expect a list of required skills, including: Paralegals, also known as paralegals, are lawyers who help individual lawyers or legal teams prepare and prioritize legal documents. They conduct legal research, compile legal documents and evidence, facilitate interviews, and provide support before and during court proceedings. More than a name, there is a difference between a paralegal and a paralegal. Law firms need to understand “what a legal assistant is.” By understanding the different roles (and responsibilities that come with them), lawyers can make a more informed decision as they build their teams to grow their law firms. Paralegals generally do not require formal training beyond a high school diploma or GED. However, many are pursuing additional legal studies (e.g.
a legal assistant certificate) or gaining legal training in the workplace. Legal assistants play an essential role in the day-to-day running of the law firm or legal department. They assist in case management, document preparation, scheduling, communication with clients and court officials, and meeting the needs of lawyers. Legal assistants must have excellent communication skills and great attention to detail. You should also feel comfortable working independently and being part of a team. We are looking for a motivated legal assistant to ensure the smooth running of the office and effective case management. They offer a wide range of legal services under the supervision of a lawyer. While these rules are good general guidelines, specific codes and rules for working with paralegals may vary from province or territory to jurisdiction. With that in mind, it`s important to review your state`s rules and regulations and comply with how lawyers can work with paralegals (and the tasks they can assign). While paralegals certainly have a lot to offer law firms, they fulfill a different role in a law firm.
Paralegals focus on substantive legal work on behalf of supervising lawyers. Conversely, although legal assistants also work on behalf of lawyers, they focus more on administrative support tasks. This distinction is more important than it seems at first glance. Law firms that don`t recognize the unique roles of paralegals may miss out on the value paralegals can bring to a law firm. A legal assistant may work with one or more lawyers at the same time, depending on the size of a law firm and the number of cases handled. ABC Company, a national law firm with multiple offices, immediately opened a full-time legal assistant position for our office (city, state). Legal assistants assist lawyers in a variety of tasks, including legal research, document preparation and review, communicating with clients, preparing for hearings, trials and meetings, and organizing and maintaining records. A high school diploma is required to become a paralegal, and most paralegals have an associate`s degree or certificate in paralegal studies. Legal assistants are usually highly organized and detail-oriented and have strong communication skills. No matter how you find a freelancer, it`s also important to make sure you have a good process to make it easier for a legal assistant to work with your business.
Effective law firm processes are especially important if your legal assistant works remotely. Adding paralegals to your cloud-based practice management system makes it easy to collaborate with legal assistants, whether they`re in the office or remotely.