Are you in the process of considering different career paths? You may be surprised to learn that a career as a legal assistant can be incredibly fulfilling and lucrative. With many employment options and legal concentrations, legal assistants can work in a variety of different office environments while enjoying an array of diverse work experiences. If you’re interested in embarking on a career as a legal assistant, here’s what you need to know:
What is a legal assistant?
Legal assistants are trained legal professionals who support and aid lawyers in cases, working within law offices, corporations, or governmental agencies. Most legal assistants require education beyond high school, as well as a paralegal certificate or other form of specialized legal education or training. There are many skills necessary to work as a legal assistant, including basic computer and software knowledge; strong analytical and communication abilities; expertise of legal procedures; and experience drafting legal documents. In addition to education, on-the-job training allows professionals to acquire the skills and knowledge required to excel as legal assistants.
What do legal assistants do?
Legal assistants perform a variety of tasks and assignments to support the work of attorneys. Research is one of the primary responsibilities related to helping lawyers prepare for cases or trials. Some of the other core duties of a legal assistant include organizing and coordinating legal documents; scheduling meetings, appointments, and interviews with clients, lawyers, and witnesses; developing drafts of legal documents (such as contracts or letters); and performing administrative tasks. Legal assistants often work in various areas of law, such as corporate law, litigation, or criminal law.
How can you advance as a legal assistant?
While advancement opportunities can vary, some of the best ways to grow as a legal assistant include earning a bachelor’s degree in legal or paralegal studies, which will allow you to acquire critical skills, such as research and legal writing. Additionally, there are many types of certifications that can enhance your marketability in the legal field, such as the Certified Legal Assistant (CLA) certification. Investing in ways to expand your knowledge base and grow your credentials will increase your earning potential as a legal assistant over time.
Ready to explore legal assistant openings? Launch your job search with the experts at BOS Staffing and let us help you land your next position.