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Guide: How to become a paralegal

Posted by Center for Advanced Legal Studies [CALS]

Jun 6, 2017 2:15:00 PM


According to the National Federation of Paralegal Associations, 85% of paralegals have formal paralegal training. For future paralegals, this statistic is critically important. Your likelihood of career success—from receiving an invitation to interview for a position, to earning a competitive salary—increases if you pursue an appropriate paralegal education.How to become a paralegal.png

However, with multiple training options available, and roughly 600 paralegal programs in the United States alone, determining the meaning of “appropriate” can be difficult. To assist you, the below is an introductory guide to how to become a paralegal.

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Topics: credentials, career, education and training

Paralegals Making a Difference: 6 Ways A Paralegal Career Can Impact the World

Posted by Center for Advanced Legal Studies [CALS]

May 23, 2017 11:00:00 AM

"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has." -Margaret Mead

Business_Team_AdobeStock_52072109.pngOne measure of success is the ability to do meaningful work with a lasting impact. A paralegal career gives countless opportunities to make a difference in the lives of many people. The role of the paralegal in the legal field often directly intersects with individual lives, local communities, and even the future direction of the law.

When we think of paralegals who changed the world, most people are familiar with the work of Erin Brockovich in spearing the effort to help those affected by contaminated water, or the whistleblowing activities of Merrell Williams in bringing down the deceptive practices of the Tobacco industry. Yet, the day to day work of countless, unsung heroes is a common theme in the paralegal profession.

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Topics: career, paralegal skills, featured

Paralegal Career Change: From Texas Oil and Gas to Sunny California Tinseltown

Posted by Center for Advanced Legal Studies [CALS]

May 19, 2017 10:00:00 AM

Kelli.pngWhen I was laid off from the oil business for the second time in my 15-year career, I was in shock. I couldn’t believe I was out of work again. Ups and downs are normal for the energy sector, and Texans are used to it. But the 2014 oil bust in Houston was particularly harsh for me. What was supposed to last a year at most would never come back, at least not like it used to be in the boom days.

By 2015, I had nothing in savings and I needed to work. Because I was a contractor who worked on a project basis, the 2014 down cycle was harder on me because I was not eligible for a severance nor unemployment benefits. Losing my career was not only financially devastating, but emotionally devastating as well. Most of my adult life I had a title and a hefty paycheck, and my identity was tied up in my career. I lost my identity when I lost my job, and I had no choice but to start over. If I wanted to have a better life long term, I had to find a career that was stable and offered more security.

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Topics: paralegal certificate, graduates and alumni, career, featured

What Is An Average Paralegal Salary?

Posted by Center for Advanced Legal Studies [CALS]

May 16, 2017 2:20:00 PM

paralegal salary expectations

If you are considering a career as a paralegal, you may understandably wonder what salary you could command in such a role. According to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average paralegal salary in 2016 was $49,500.1 However, it is important to recognize that this figure can vary as a result of several factors.

What are these factors? As a prospective paralegal, do you have any control over them, and if so, how can you increase your earning potential if you ultimately decide to enter this field?

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Topics: credentials, career, education and training

What do Paralegals do? The Growing Trend of Non-Traditional Applications of a Paralegal Degree

Posted by Center for Advanced Legal Studies [CALS]

May 9, 2017 2:20:00 PM


It is an exciting time to begin a career as a paralegal. In recent decades, the paralegal profession has continued to grow and expand into new, nontraditional fields. As we discussed previously in our blog, the rate of paralegal employment is expected to grow 8% from 2014-2024.1Business Meeting.png

The emergence of new industries and increasing efficiency in the legal industry has led to a higher demand for paralegal services.2 This trend is not new. The National Federation of Paralegal Associations expressed that this job growth is occurring in nontraditional environments, outside of traditional law firms. As we have reported before, tech companies such as Amazon are calling paralegal and legal assistants a “high demand field” and including tuition reimbursement for paralegal programs.
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Topics: career, paralegal skills, featured

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