Paralegals are legal professionals who assist those in solicitor jobs and clients in one or various areas of specialisation, such as debt recovery, commercial and residential property, personal injury, litigation, and fraud. Despite the fact that they are not fully qualified lawyers, paralegals have substantial knowledge of legal procedures and the administrative work that these entail, and are essential members of any legal team. This role is mostly office-based and requires top-notch organisational and time-management skills, a methodical approach to work, and the ability to carry out research independently. Further requirements include excellent written and oral communication skills, as well as being able to work as part of a team and to deal with confidential information professionally.
Paralegal Jobs Education Requirements
At the very least, most law firms expect paralegals to have good GCSEs and / or some relevant work experience. Some firms offer on-the-job training and supervision and may offer financial assistance to help pay for a paralegal studies certificate. There is no standard qualification that guarantees entry into this profession, but some recommended courses include HNDs in Legal Services and law foundation degrees. Specialised paralegal training courses are also available from private institutions and law schools. Courses cover aspects like legal studies, law and practice, and specialist areas like contract law, civil litigation, family law, probate practice, etc. Law graduates may also work as paralegals while they gain hands-on experience in their chosen specialism.
Paralegal Jobs Market
Legal firms provide the vast majority of paralegal jobs in the UK, although some of them are also finance manager jobs and roles advertised by real estate firms, and the public sector that require legal knowledge. Paralegal jobs may be advertised as legal assistant or legal administrator jobs. Jobs prospects are generally good for qualified applicants, since National Association of Licensed Paralegals has revealed that paralegal vacancies make up the bulk of the legal job market.
Paralegal Jobs Salary Information
Starting annual salaries average £12,000-£15,000, but mid-career paralegals often earn £27,000. Higher salaries (up to £60,000) may be offered to experienced paralegals in large law firms and in certain industry sectors, such as finance or the public sector.