Paralegals help attorneys in carrying out most of the legal jobs, but most of them do not have the level of educational qualification like lawyers. In the United States, there is an opportunity for people who are not lawyers to work as a paralegal.
It can work in the same way in other countries in the world. In some countries, paralegals are required to have approval from the legal council before they can operate. It has to be noted that in this situation the license issued by the legal council will enable them to function in those countries or function as lawyers, but they are only allowed to work in lower tribunals or perform administrative tasks. Paralegals also work in areas where lawyers work such as in government offices, real estate and so on. They also help attorneys in connecting them with Private Investigators that will help them in doing tasks.
In the United States and other countries in the world, paralegals cannot function as lawyers. It means that they cannot offer legal advice or appear in court or charge fees because it is not legal for them to do so. Carrying out these activities is considered as a violation of the law. In the United States, two organizations are responsible for the regulation of activities of paralegals, and they are the National Association of Legal Assistants (NALA) and the National Federation of Paralegal Associations (NFPA)
Skills and Benefits of Paralegals to Attorneys
1.Finding Private Investigators
Paralegals help attorneys in finding professional private investigators, whether insurance fraud investigators or criminal investigators in all the cases they need to identify the best Investigator for every circumstance such as criminal, domestic,personal injury, civil cases, wrongful death, fraud and others. They have the knowledge and experience to know the right private investigator that will adequately handle their cases.
2.Documenting and Researching
Paralegals will help attorneys in documenting and researching information they need, and this will help to speed the work of the Attorney, they are expected to be punctual and assist Attorneys in attending to most of the basic things they need to get ready in the office. Punctuality is always expected from a paralegal in other to help in executing most of his tasks.
3.Writing Briefs and Letters
Paralegals do help to write letters and briefs about cases for attorneys, and it is vital that paralegals will have excellent communication and writing skills in other to make their work professional and also seek clarification from the attorney before proceeding.
4.Attending to Attorneys Clients
Paralegals help in attending to clients in the legal office in the absence of the attorney for one issue or the other. It is required from them to have excellent language skills to enable them communicate to clients effectively and basic legal terms is required from them in other to understand the request of the clients such as interrogatories, depositions, and requests for admission in various categories of law.
One thing that is certain in the legal office is the management of daily tasks and paralegals are responsible for organizing of the daily schedule of the attorney such as court dates, filing and indexing of documents so the documents can be easily accessed.
6.Filing and Managing Projects Online
Paralegals help in managing and filing cases online, and that implies that basic technological skills need to be mastered in other to become successful in any filing projects online. Recently e-filing have become very common in the legal profession, and it is important that paralegals masters this aspect of filing to help to ease the work of attorneys.
Experience is necessary when it comes to working as a paralegal professional. Recently more paralegal professionals are required because of the increasing cost of legal service and hiring of paralegals have helped to reduce the cost of legal services.
“The Paralegal is the gatekeeper to the lawyer and also for the Private Investigator”
CSI Secure Solutions
About the Author
Chris Cavallo has been involved in every facet of the Security and Investigations Industry for over 35 years. He started his career with the two largest Security and Investigation Companies in the world at the time, Wells Fargo and Pinkerton’s Investigative Services. After spending 2 years as a Management Trainee with 11 months in the field as an Undercover Operative he quickly raised rose through the ranks and became one of the most highly recognized Security Consultants for his first 10 years. He is considered a subject matter expert in various Security/Investigative practices such as Protective Services and Background Investigations. He then founded a company, RSI Investigations (Records Search Inc.), which was one of the pioneers and leaders in the Background Screening industry in the late 80’s. After this experience Chris founded Cavallo Associates working with Security, Defense and Investigation Companies and helping them develop their Business Plans and training their personnel while opening new markets in such places as Rome, Italy the Panama Canal and Bogota, Colombia. Today Chris is a Florida Licensed Private Investigator providing services primarily to the Legal Community and continues to dedicate himself in the Investigations Industry, sponsoring and developing several PI Interns while operating under the brand name CSI Secure Solutions headquartered in Davie Florida with an office in Bogota, Colombia. Chris and his wife Caryn Rae Robin a local singer and popular voice Coach live in Plantation, Florida with twin daughters Stefanie & Cristina and are very proud Grandparents of 5, Christopher 11,Stefan 9,Legend 6, Roman 5 and Mia Robin 4.
Member of South Florida Paralegal Association (SFPA)
Member of Florida Criminal Lawyers Association (FACDL)
Member of Florida Association of Licensed Investigators (FALI)
Member of American Society of Industrial Security(ASIS)
Member of Justice Administrative Commission (JAC)
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