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Get on the Fast Track to Becoming a Paralegal

Paralegals assist attorneys with providing various legal services. While a paralegal is prohibited from offering legal counseling as well as other aspects involved in the field, they do play a vital role in the preparation of cases. Many paralegals are seasoned legal secretaries while others are hired for their technical experience in specific areas such as tax preparation and criminal justice. In most cases, college graduates with no previous legal experience are hired and then trained on the job.

As we all know, there are many specialized areas of law. Family law, corporate law, criminal law and personal injury are just a few examples. As the subject of law becomes more complicated, more and more paralegals are opting to focus on one specific aspect as opposed to across the board. Focusing in one main area is deemed as beneficial since specializing in any subject means being able to perfect your skills.

Learning everything you can about the paralegal profession is the first step in starting your career. You can gather information by reading, conducting online research, learning from the people you know about the field and finally, becoming a part of your school’s debate team or making an effort to attend debates.

The next step is to gain educational credits. The path to a paralegal career is not defined in terms of education. Your education is more likely to dictate the type of paralegal job you will get and how competitive the job market for that job is. With this in mind, the more qualifications you have and training under your belt, the more marketable you will be when finding a job.

As previously stated, the options available are many. One such option is to take a two year Associate’s Degree in paralegal studies from a community college or a traditional four year university. Included in the program are general courses, electives and specific courses which are law related. Yet, another option is a Baccalaureate degree from a four year university. Presently, many tertiary institutions are offering both majors and minors in Paralegal Studies.

Some four year programs offer similar courses as the Associates degree during the first two years after which, they permit you to utilize the final two years in advanced courses which specialize in the legal field. In the case of the school not offering a specific paralegal or legal studies program, you can most likely take courses in Criminal Justice, Political Science or related field.

While paralegals are not required to attend a school which is approved by the American Bar Association (ABA), this does make your degree more reputable in the eyes of employers.

After the proper qualification has been sought, the next step is to gain work experience. This can be accomplished by interning. Many schools offer internship programs as an introduction to the field. You may also consider working as an entry level employee at a law firm. Working as a research assistant is also a good option. This will teach you the many types of research. These work options are not only available to you after school, as you can do these while attending school whether part time or over the holidays.

Learn about all of the training you will need to start your career as a paralegal. Find out what the cost is for paralegal courses, how long the program is, and what paralegal classes you need to start your exciting and well-paid career as a paralegal. It’s all at our site,