How To Get Started In Your Career As A Legal Assistant

There are many reasons someone would want to become a legal assistant, from the job perks to the money. But it can be difficult to understand how to get started and what roles you will be in charge of. Here’s what you need to know.

What The Job Entails

A legal assistant is someone who works within the law to prepare legal documents such as correspondence or filings through either paper or electronic settings. Often, they will be in charge of knowing where all the right documents are in a filing system. They will also help coordinate law office activity such as meeting clients to discuss details of cases or any important legal tasks. Their work is crucial to a successful law firm, as it often involves hard work that only they can do.

The Pros Of Working In The Job

One of the primary reasons people get into working within the legal industry, apart from the money, is to help people. Legal aid can come in all different shapes and sizes, and many people get into the industry after a personal experience, or from wanting to make a difference.

Some people just enjoy working in a pressured situation where you get the thrill from succeeding and working in general. Of course, this won’t be for everyone.

The Training You Will Need

Some people get put off looking into the legal industry as they think it requires years of university study or qualifications. Whilst that is true for certain parts of the law, such as being a lawyer, it is not required for the most part.

It’s the same as any industry really, such as medical. With the medical industry some doctors will need years of study, whilst some assistants and nurses will be perhaps half the time. These days, you can sign up to courses that last only a few months and can help propel you into the legal industry.

There are even courses that cater for individuals looking to become paralegals, as well as legal assistants and secretaries. This helps unlock different career paths and opportunities that they simply didn’t think possible before. Even for those who are currently working within law, the same courses offer chances to refine their skills set and update their knowledge about all things legal, as well as help expand their influence within their organisation.

The amount of legal aid and requests are always increasing, meaning that there is always demand for legal workers. You can get started with paralegal studies via online courses that will give you a wide range knowledge of all legal procedures as well as acquire the skills to conduct legal research, interpret specific legislation and other court material. 

Of course, you will also learn how to draft legal documents and end up with a certificate that could get you through the door in a new job opportunity.

What Qualities You Should Have

Whilst you can get training and resources to help you become better equipped in becoming a legal assistant, there are some more personal attributes that will help put you in the best position possible.

Organisation is a big skill you should have. Not only does this allow you to sort through timetables with ease and organise client lists, but when it comes to doing the hard work, you will need to be happy to sort through your files in a way that makes sense and saves time. There will be a lot of file reading so you need to know where to find the right files when needed.

Being able to deal with pressure is also a big skill to be aware of. If possible, you should be equipped to be able to think ahead of time too, which goes hand in hand with giving the best service possible.

Of course, not only do you get the benefit of a sense of accomplishment for helping your clients through difficult times, you will also be paid well for your work. Depending on the place you work, the money could be even higher with bonuses paid out.

Where You Could Be Working

There are many different opportunities available to someone with the skills and qualifications within the legal industry. They could go to a smaller law firm that deals with crime, or they could go to work within a property solicitor. 

Property law is becoming a major element of the legal industry as more homes are being built and more property becomes more available. You can also work within the government in some way if you wished to as well.

The Industry As A Whole

The legal industry provides skills that could lead to other industries for when you ever desire a change. For example, you will be equipped to work any sort of administrative and clerical jobs once you’ve worked as a legal assistant, as every business and industry will need this sort of work.

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