For people looking for a successful professional career, being a paralegal offers an array of advantages over other choices. Here will we discuss the many benefits of beginning a paralegal career.
- First of all, not only are paralegals already high in demand, but they will continue to be over the next seven years. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that employment of paralegals will expand 22 percent between 2006 and 2016, which is much faster than the average of all occupations tracked by the Bureau. Law offices will always have a need for paralegals because their assistance gets large legal workloads done much more quickly and efficiently, freeing up lawyers’ time so that they can accept more clients.
- Being a paralegal is widely deemed as being one of the best careers in the U.S., largely due to the job growth expected in the profession and the earning potential paralegals have. In fact, CNN Money Magazine deems one type of paralegal, the corporate paralegal, as one of the top 50 jobs in the U.S., with the job ranking at #36.
- Then there’s the paralegal’s salary to consider. While salaries vary greatly by education level and experience, the average annual earnings of a full-time hourly/salaried paralegal are $43,040, which includes bonuses (paralegals often receive bonuses for the long hours they put in when they are on a deadline). However, the top 10 percent earned more than $67,540 on average annually. Aside from this salary, a large amount of paralegals receive other perks like: vacation, paid sick leave, a 401(k) savings plan, personal time off, life insurance, dental insurance and reimbursement for continued legal education or training.
- Another benefit of being a paralegal is that you can work in a variety of organizations and focus on a number of legal areas. While most paralegals work for law firms, they can also work in government offices (where the pay is often higher), corporate legal departments, insurance companies, real estate and title agencies and financial institutions, for example. They can also be self-employed, contracting themselves out to law firms. Areas of law a paralegal can work in include litigation, personal injury, criminal law, corporate law, family law and immigration, to name a few, so a paralegal has options to seek out work in the area of their interest.
- Finally, there is the satisfaction of being a valued, contributing member of a legal team and knowing that you are helping people. Paralegals take legal work burdens off lawyers so that more of their focus remains on the clients. This means you are helping the client get the best service the law office can offer.