Legal assistants, or paralegals, are an integral part of the legal system. They provide essential support to lawyers and other legal professionals, helping them to prepare for court cases and trials. Their duties include answering phone calls, verifying facts, gathering evidence, communicating with court employees, preparing legal documents, and performing daily office tasks. In addition, they may also help to prepare witnesses for testimony and coordinate the logistics of attending a trial. Paralegals are increasingly being relied upon to help law firms become more efficient and reduce costs.
As a result, they are taking on a “hybrid” role within the firm, performing not only traditional paralegal functions but also some of the tasks previously assigned to legal secretaries or other legal support workers. With more knowledge about what a legal assistant can actually offer, you can make more informed decisions when considering adding a legal assistant to your team. Paralegals use computer technology and software to manage and organize the growing amount of documents and data collected during a case. If you're not sure if you have an interest in thinking, persuading, or organizing that might fit a career as a paralegal and legal assistant, you can take a professional exam to measure your interests. If you're a lawyer who spends a lot of time performing non-billable tasks, a legal assistant could improve your company's efficiency and allow you to spend more time on billable work. A legal assistant generally helps with administrative tasks at a law firm, such as billing, answering emails, and scheduling meetings. The profession of legal assistant is quite young and its origins date back to the late 1960s.
Every legal assistant does something different, as the role and responsibilities that come with it vary depending on the law firm. As we have established, legal assistants help law firms by working with other members of the team, from paralegals to lawyers on behalf of lawyers. Using an independent or virtual legal assistant is an effective solution that allows firms to delegate routine and time-consuming support tasks to a legal assistant as needed. This will lead to an increase in demand for legal workers in a variety of settings, such as financial and insurance firms, consulting firms, and healthcare providers. You can become a legal assistant with just one certificate, although many have associate degrees. The average salary of paralegals varies depending on factors such as practice area, experience, and location.