Paralegals work in a variety of environments, from private companies, law firms and the police to local government and the courts. The term applies to any member of staff progressing files under supervision – from legal secretaries who have gained the necessary knowledge to carry out specific practical tasks, to law graduates who progress a heavy caseload of files from start to finish.
Tasks they undertake commonly include research and preparing legal documents and interviewing clients, as well as providing them with general legal information. As a result, good recall, research skills and being organised and accurate are essential attributes.
Paralegals are very commonly employed in the fields of residential conveyancing, personal injury or debt recovery where roles might be advertised as ‘conveyancing assistant’, ‘claims handler’ or ‘litigation assistant’ respectively. A paralegal might be known as a ‘legal assistant’ in family or employment law departments.
As the role of the paralegal varies greatly between organisation and different areas of legal practice, so do our courses. Courses start at Level 2 (GCSE-level) training for legal secretaries who wish to move into paralegal work and have not studied for a long time, through to Level 6 (honours-degree level) courses for law graduates to acquire high-level legal practice skills.
The courses available depend on your current skills and academic qualifications: