Facts about UK paralegals answered, including qualifications, daily tasks, and even average salaries.
Could a job as a paralegal interest you? Finding work in the legal sector has always been a difficult route to follow. If you respect the law and wish to see justice fulfilled, there’s no reason not to work towards this career path. If you can’t stand to see injustice, however, this career might disappoint you.
Whatever happens in the court systems, the paralegal secretary is there to make sure it all goes smoothly, at the correct time, and with the correct paperwork. Here is all you need to know about this law career, should you wish a new career in the UK.
Do the UK even have Paralegals?
Let’s start with the basics. Paralegal sounds like a term taken straight from a soap opera in the early 90’s but it is, in fact, a real job title. There are approximately 100,000 paralegals working in Britain at the moment. Every law office in the US has multiple paralegal assistants per case, office, or per lawyer. Even litigation support services have these legal secretaries to help them compose files.
What Qualifications do you need to become a Paralegal in the UK?
If you would like to become a paralegal yourself, you must make sure you have the skills and experience that potential employers are looking for. The qualifications you need to land a role in this career includes:
- If you have no qualifications, consider an apprenticeship in your early teens.
- You may work towards this position if you begin working in legal offices in other roles.
- You may take a college diploma, for which you will need 1 or 2 or more A levels.
- If you want to enter a degree course at a university, you will need 2 or 3 A levels.
- You may need a license to practice from the National Association of Licensed Paralegals if you are striking out on your own.
And once you have your qualifications, you can search online for Paralegal Jobs in your area. You should also upload your own CV to a job search site so that potential employers can send your invitations to interview even when you are not online.
What is the Average Salary of the Paralegal in the UK?
The UK Government lists the average starter salary for a paralegal, legal assistant, or contracts assistant as they may be known, at £15,500 per year. When you have completed training and passed entry level, that figure will grow alongside your experience. Entering a new job as an experienced paralegal could earn you up to £40,000 from a successful law firm.
What tasks do Paralegals face?
So what do the daily duties of a paralegal involve? Paralegals support other legal representatives to handle their workload. They organise, retrieve files, contact law agencies for documentation, put files together, speak to witnesses, prepare legal documents, interview clients, and can even support your lawyer while they are in court. They are known as the backbone of the legal system, because even the highest ranking judges know that the system would not work if it wasn’t for their meticulous attention. Are you meticulous? With a little law knowledge you could be a paralegal too.