As the legal environment and the need for skilled employees continue to rise, you’ve been considering a future career as a paralegal, but do you have what it takes? We want to share what paralegal skills are most vital, and how you can be better prepared for the job.
Evaluating what it takes to be a paralegal will not only better help you with your courses, but also gives you a leg up on what employers are looking for.
In 2023, according to ZipRecruiter, the top keywords employers use in a paralegal job description are communication skills, detail-oriented, and drafting in the Microsoft Office Suite.
Attention to Detail
When court documents are involved, it is extremely important that the details are correct. A paralegal may be asked to include birth dates, dollar amounts, reference numbers, etc., and if one number is shifted, and an error is found a trial could be put on hold or worst case, thrown out. We do not say this to scare you out of a rewarding profession, but to encourage you to take on this career if detailed and methodical work inspire you. Paralegals notice little things, that can have a big impact on the bottom line. Overseeing the intricacies of planning for a trial requires a focus on a variety of details.
Communicating and teamwork is another necessary paralegal area of expertise. Paralegals are often part of a larger legal team that might include fellow paralegals, e-discovery experts, legal secretaries, partners, associates, and more. In this career, you must also work collectively with outside parties including clients, opposing counsel, experts, judges, court staff, and vendors. Effective communication tactics are taught throughout our courses. Investing in your interpersonal skills can take you further in your paralegal career.
A large part of your job will consist of drafting correspondence, pleadings, discovery, motions, briefs, legal memorandums, and other documents. Our courses cover the mechanics of legal writing and language usage a paralegal will be expected to understand – the advanced legal research and writing course is a great place to get started. Your job will depend on a strong ability to draft flawless submissions to your legal team and the court. Writing submissions might include emails to clients and other staff, wills, resolutions, contracts, and more. Any external writing submission represents your attorneys and the firm’s reputation.
In summary, attention to detail, communication, and writing are three of the most sought-after job skills when hiring a paralegal. Completing both the CLS Paralegal Core Requirements and the Advanced Requirements of the Paralegal Certificate Program provides comprehensive training and skills that should enable you to quickly excel at a paralegal job and stand out amongst other candidates.
Our training will power your marketability and earning potential.