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What is a Paralegal?

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Talent.com talent.com
Answered February 09 2021
Career Expert at Talent.com
Paralegals are professionals who work independently but under the ultimate direction of a lawyer. They have extensive legal knowledge and often hold a degree or certificate in Paralegal Studies.   
Paralegals have many legal responsibilities but cannot give out legal advice. They work in any specialized Law firm by assisting with various administrative tasks in an office setting. Other terms for Paralegals include Law Clerks, Legal Assistants, and Legal Technicians. Paralegals have a reputation for being very detail-oriented, organized, and versatile.  
These professionals act as a source of support in the legal system, and their roles will largely depend on their backgrounds and the cases they manage. Paralegals are present in all law fields and can work in many settings, including law offices, government agencies, corporations, or freelance agents. Some Paralegals can be experts in niche areas as per their studies and experience, but they exist in all fields. 

Personality Traits of a Paralegal 
  • Attention to Detail  
As with all activities related to the law, a Paralegal needs to maintain strong attention to detail. Everything submitted to the court must be thoroughly examined, from grammar to fact-checking. There is no room for Paralegals to make errors, so they must be extremely detail-oriented.  

  • Strong Communicators  
Paralegals need to be strong communicators, both verbal and written, as they maintain many roles that require daily correspondence and face-to-face interactions with clients. Paralegals perform daily clerical duties, some of which must be thorough and correctly completed. The language of the law is exact, so Paralegals must communicate in efficient and effective ways.  

  • Organized  
Working within the law profession as a Paralegal means that all duties performed should be treated in an organized manner. Paralegals work closely with many case files and documents, which can be confidential, so they must diligently keep track of everything they do. Additionally, Paralegals can be in charge of calendars and deadlines, so a strong sense of coordination is required to ensure a structured workflow for all parties involved.