National Paralegal Day is October 23rd
A paralegal performs a variety of tasks to support attorneys, including maintaining and organizing files, conducting legal research, and drafting documents. Legal nurse consultants provide similar support but do medical research instead of legal. Paralegals are extremely crucial to the legal team and perform various legal duties that an LNC does not have the expertise to carry out.
Paralegals can be found in all types of organizations. Most work for law firms, corporate legal departments, and government agencies. They usually work full time, and some may have to work more than 40 hours a week to meet deadlines.
Paralegals typically do the following:
Investigate and gather the facts of a case
Conduct research on relevant laws, regulations, and legal articles
Gather and arrange evidence and other legal documents
Draft correspondence and legal documents, such as contracts
Get affidavits and other formal statements that may be used as evidence
Help lawyers during trials by handling exhibits or reviewing transcripts
File exhibits, briefs, appeals and other legal documents
Call clients, witnesses, lawyers, and outside vendors to schedule depositions
Paralegals’ specific duties often vary depending on the area of law in which they work.
often help lawyers prepare employee contracts, shareholder agreements, stock-option plans, and companies’ annual financial reports. Corporate paralegals may monitor and review government regulations to ensure that the corporation is aware of new legal requirements.
maintain documents received from clients, conduct research for lawyers, retrieve and organize evidence for use at depositions and trials, and draft settlement agreements. Some litigation paralegals may also help coordinate the logistics of attending a trial, including reserving office space, transporting exhibits and documents to the courtroom, and setting up computers and other equipment.
Paralegals may also specialize in other legal areas, such as criminal law, employee benefits, intellectual property, bankruptcy, immigration, family law, and real estate.
Specific job duties may also vary by the size of the law firm.
In small firms
paralegals’ duties tend to vary more. In addition to reviewing and organizing documents, paralegals may prepare written reports that help lawyers determine how to handle their cases. If lawyers decide to file lawsuits on behalf of clients, paralegals may help draft documents to be filed with the court.
In large organizations
paralegals may work on a particular phase of a case, rather than handling a case from beginning to end. For example, paralegals may only review legal material for internal use, maintain reference files, conduct research for lawyers, or collect and organize evidence for hearings.
Attorneys depend on paralegals to get cases done. Legal nurse constultants also depend on paralegals for assistance with work on cases. The role of the pralegal is invaluable.
We want to thank you for all your hard work.
Happy National Paralegal Day!