Career options for paralegals are aplenty. These individuals can be found working in law firms, private businesses and government agencies. Some may also take on a freelance paralegal opportunity if they do not want to be working for someone else; while others may accept a job as a temporary employee in a legal department.
The majority of the paralegals are found in large law firms. The type of work that they have may vary depending on the type of practice they are supporting and the number of lawyers they are working for. For individuals working in a small law firm, they are mostly engaged in the business of the firm.
If you want to pursue a career in family law, your job description is to communicate with clients who are seeking legal assistance in divorce or custody cases. On the other hand, if you are planning to take a job in immigration law department, you will be working closely with clients who are applying for a visa. You will be assisting them throughout the process of becoming a legal citizen of the country.
There are also career options for paralegals in corporate law departments. Working in this department requires you to support the company by reviewing its contract. You will also need to make a draft of legal documents, intellectual properly, environmental issues, and so on. Tracking of payment may also be your responsibility if you will be working in this field. You will also assist in drafting of documents for closings and financial transactions.
Government agencies are also employing paralegals. There are a large number of individuals who are working in various government agencies that need legal assistants.
Working for yourself is also possible. When thinking of becoming a freelance paralegal, you should have strong skills in licensing, patent prosecution and service contract providers. There are small companies out there that cannot afford to hire their own paralegals. So, they only outsource and obtain services of a freelance legal assistant.
Is this the right career for you?
But before thinking of having a career in this area, you should make a self-assessment first. You should have a valid reason you want to be a legal assistant. What are your strengths and weaknesses that can help you achieve in this area?
When starting to work as a paralegal, you should not be discouraged when the first specialty you choose does not satisfy you. You can always change lanes in order to find the one area that really interests you. Remember that short-term goals can lead to a long-term plan. There are many paralegals that shifted from one area to another until they found the one that really captivated their attention. So do not be afraid to change direction. There are a lot of areas of law that you can look into.