If you are considering becoming a paralegal, currently studying to become a paralegal or have recently graduated and are looking for a job in this field, you may want to consider becoming a litigation paralegal. This is one of the more demanding paralegal jobs, but it is also one of the most exciting and rewarding.
Litigation paralegals usually perform a very specific and important task for attorneys, law firms and legal offices; for the most part, they spend their time preparing discoveries and disclosures. This takes a lot of time, effort and legal expertise, and most attorneys don’t have the time to do it themselves, especially in information-dense medical and personal injury cases. Without litigation paralegals, many prosecutors simply wouldn’t be able to do their jobs.
Daily Life of a Litigation Paralegal
Litigation paralegals may work in various areas of specialization, including business or criminal litigation, family law, medical malpractice and/or personal injury. Some of the specific job duties that litigation paralegals fulfill on a daily basis include the following:Preparing discovery and disclosuresCommunication with clients Interviewing clientsReviewing and analyzing the facts of the caseWriting pleadings for attorneys Drafting various other legal documentsFiling and organizing legal documents
Requirements and Rewards for Litigation Paralegals
Litigation paralegals typically have either a two-year associate’s degree or a four-year bachelor’s degree. Acquiring a bachelor’s degree and mastering one or more areas of specialization will often make a paralegal a much more attractive job candidate, although some attorneys also require as much as 10 years of legal experience for litigation paralegals. This may mean that a paralegal will need to take more general legal assistant jobs before working his or her way up to the role of litigation paralegal. This is due to the high level of responsibility associated with this job. Litigation paralegals must be very knowledgeable about their area(s) of law, and should be highly organized, efficient and willing/able to work overtime when necessary.
The good news is that this job comes with its rewards. The average annual salary for litigation paralegals is approximately $ 49,000, but those with eight to 10 years of experience and specialized knowledge in one or more areas of law will likely earn more. It’s common for litigation paralegals to receive attractive benefits packages, as well. At the very least, a litigation paralegal can expect the excitement and reward that comes with helping to win a case.