Duties of A Paralegal The following article published on Paralegal Training and Jobs blog.
vary based on many factors such as experience and size of the organization. Basic duties include doing legal research work, organizing and maintaining files and drafting documents such as reports. This makes paralegals an indispensable part of the legal system. Normally, paralegals are individuals who are not yet admitted to the bar, with the exception of those with law degrees. This article discusses paralegal duties.
Paralegal Duties They help train new lawyer on issues such as protocol, research tools and methods and case preparation in the firm. This ensures consistency and continuity within the firm. They research on the facts of the case. They research on the laws, regulation and legal articles which are applicable to the case in question. They organize information pertaining to a case in a logical manner. They save information touching on a particular case and the client transactions in a computer record. They transcribe reports to guide the attorneys to arrange for legal proceedings. They draft emails together with other relevant information, for example agreements and bank loans. They record sworn statements or any other formal statement that may be of importance as proof in the law court.The paralegal assist the attorneys during legal proceedings.
Paralegal Duties in Smaller Firms Paralegals and legal assistants help the attorneys to prepare for hearings, trials, and commercial meetings. Nonetheless, their precise responsibilities vary based on the size of the organization. In small law firms, the duties of paralegals tend to vary significantly. Besides going through information and organizing it, paralegals may draft written reports to help lawyers
handle the cases in question. If the lawyers wish to file lawsuits and serve papers to defendants on the behalf of the client, the paralegals draft the documents and the legal arguments that have to be filed with the court.
Paralegal Duties in Larger Firms However, in larger law firms, paralegals tend to work specifically on the details of certain segment of a case, rather than all of it at once as is the case in smaller firms. As such, a paralegal assigned to the litigation department may perform tasks such as doing research for lawyers, reviewing internal legal material and filing records. Such paralegal may also gather and organize evidence for the court hearings. Litigation paralegals rarely avail themselves in courts, but may draft agreements and compose trial documents.
Adoption of Technology With the increasing adoption of computer software and technology by law firms to help manage documents and draft trial notes, paralegals are required to have computer skills. They use software to prepare and file documents and draft trial papers. They should also keep themselves up to date on the latest software for electronic discovery and electronic database management. Electronic discovery is a collective term for electronic materials involved in trials such a documents, emails, websites and accounting databases.
Specialization Paralegals can opt to specialize in a certain branch of law and hence assume more duties and responsibilities. These branches are intellectual property, immigration, bankruptcy, family, criminal and corporate law among others. Paralegal duties can increase as one gains experience. Original story: Duties of A Paralegal
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