Don’t be intimidated about becoming a legal assistant!
There is a lot to learn, and we’ll cover everything you need to know to get started on your journey to becoming a legal assistant or paralegal.
Continue reading to find out how to become a legal assistant, what a legal assistant does, how to find a job as a legal assistant, and how to become a certified legal assistant.
How to Become a Legal Assistant
The most important aspect of becoming a legal assistant is to become educated to prepare you for work in a law office. The best way to do that is to attend paralegal classes. There are five paralegal school options.
Whatever type of program you choose, the curriculum will be similar in that there are basic concepts you must learn. Some of these are: legal vocabulary, jurisdiction, time constraints, civil procedure, and rules of evidence. You will also learn about court rules and how to conduct legal research.
What Does a Legal Assistant Do?
With all the many different career options for legal assistants, even though they all have legal work in common, the work involved can be very different, depending on the type of work and where it’s at.
Most legal assistant and paralegal jobs will have some basic things in common that are standard job duties.
In general, you will be expected to do some administrative work. Duties like answering phones, sorting mail, and filing paperwork are typical. Sending correspondence and creating case files are common tasks as well.
Legal work includes monitoring court timelines, drafting court documents, and communicating with clients. You may conduct legal research to find proper jurisdiction and judicial authority on cases.
How to Get a Legal Assistant Job
There are too many different fields of law to list here, so it’s safe to say that no matter what your interests are, there is a law firm out there that specializes in that type of law.
Just to name a few options: criminal, civil, family, corporate, real estate, immigration, appellate, personal injury, and bankruptcy law.
There are opportunities to work for the government, in private practice, or in a corporate office.
Legal Assistant Certification
Legal assistant or paralegal certification is a great next step for those who are looking to advance both their career and their personal development.
Presently, no US state or Canadian providence requires certification or licensure, but having the added credential is shown to provide a higher salary and comes with prestige.
Learn more about how to become a certified legal assistant here.