The supporting hand of the lawyer or attorney is referred to as Legal Assistants. They are responsible for researching and preparing the first draft of the documents, updating files, and managing legal documents. The role of a legal assistant is to increase a lawyer’s effectiveness by creating case materials, supporting evidence, and settlement choices. A legal assistant keeps track of cases to assist the attorney in court.
Besides the file work, Legal Assistant has to manage digital databases, create and distribute affidavits, and consult law libraries. So, a legal assistant must be proficient with computers. A candidate who failed the bar exam can also be a Legal Assistant. The demand for legal assistants is rising along with the number of Lawyers. Anyone with the required abilities and knowledge can succeed as a legal assistant because there are tremendous job opportunities in the legal field.
A high school diploma is needed to pursue a legal assistant career, and most of them have an associate’s degree or paralegal studies certification. Legal assistants often have excellent organized and detail-oriented skills and extraordinary communication abilities.
The exact position and responsibilities of a legal assistant might change based on the specific requirements of a law firm. However, according to the Association of Legal Administrators (ALA), legal assistants are those whose work output includes administrative and secretarial chores that help an attorney, some of which overlap with paralegal duties.
What does A Legal Assistant Do?
The Lawyers or attorneys prefer a legal assistant to rescue them by taking some of the burdens off them. Typical legal assistant duties and responsibilities include Collecting, examining, and organizing evidence and other legal documents for attorney review and case preparation. And drafting and reviewing legal documents, such as pleadings and contracts, as well as correspondence.
The main course of a legal assistant involves arranging meetings, interviews, and depositions with witnesses and clients and managing, organizing, and maintaining documents in paper or electronic filing systems. Give general administrative support, such as keeping the lawyer’s calendar up to date and organizing travel arrangements.
They are responsible for researching regulations, laws, and legal articles to help with the preparation of reports, case files, and legal advice. They manage client billing by creating, approving, and mailing invoices and addressing billing disputes in cooperation with the billing lawyer.
Qualifications & Skills Required to Become A Legal Assistant
If you wish to pursue a career as a legal assistant, you must have a bachelor’s degree in law to be Legal Assistant. And aspirants with a high school diploma or general education degree (GED) can also be Legal Assistants. Several lawyers hire assistants without a legal background and train them on the job. However, a two- or four-year paralegal degree can increase your chances of finding employment.
Lawyers or Attorneys are very engaged professionals. Their workplaces can quickly become disorganized due to ongoing trials, mountains of paperwork, and frequent meetings. Legal assistants with organizational abilities can make their employers organized too. The work of legal assistants contributes to the smooth operation of law offices by handling duties including organizing projects, keeping track of calendars, and handling paperwork.
Most legal assistants aid their lawyers in creating everything from routine emails to formal legal documents. Therefore, legal assistants must be proficient in writing, document creation, and proofreading to communicate effectively. Strong grammar, vocabulary, spelling, and transcribing abilities are also beneficial.
Lawyers regularly need more time to stay updated on the latest technology. Consequently, legal assistants often perform various tasks, including making presentations, managing video conferences, and backing up files. Microsoft Office, legal software, and document management system knowledge give legal assistants an edge over their less technologically adept rivals. Legal assistants may also want to support ongoing technological advancements to keep their offices competitive with other upcoming law firms.
In a trial, even a small error could result in a lost case. And legal documents are no less forgiving. Legal assistants are responsible for spotting and fixing any mistakes that others may have overlooked. Typos, double-booked meetings, and missing pieces of evidence are all included in this. Precision, taking notes, and attention to detail are required.
Daily, legal assistants may contact judges, coworkers, vendors, unhappy clients, challenging members of the opposing counsel, stressed-out attorneys, and unwilling witnesses. These interactions can happen in person, over the phone, in video conferencing, via email, text message, or written communication. A top-notch legal assistant should have the ability to give instructions, greet people graciously, and diffuse tense situations. Some essential skills involve listening, expressing ideas clearly, interpreting non-verbal cues, negotiating, and being emphatic.
Understanding of Legal Terminology and Documentation
Any legal assistant must be complete mastery of commonly-used legal terms. They must be accustomed to using terms like “acquittal,” “habeas corpus,” and “subpoena.” Furthermore, they should be knowledgeable about anything from trial briefs to living wills because the position regularly demands reading, producing, and interpreting legal documents.
Law firms may be highly stressful places to work. Each day, legal assistants may work with various persons on multiple projects. Additionally, many assignments have strict completion dates. As a result, legal assistants must be able to set priorities, assign tasks, and monitor different workflows—all while remaining composure under pressure.
There are moments when plans don’t work out. And frequently, it falls to legal assistants to come up with solutions. Legal assistants figure out innovative ways to overcome obstacles, whether dealing with double-booked meetings or finding a difficult-to-find expert witness.
Strong analytical skills are needed for legal assistants because they are responsible for conducting research. They must be able to search for information, identify trustworthy sources and distinguish relevant facts. They need to know when to jump in and leave things alone, mainly while working on a case or with an attorney. A skilled legal assistant’s critical thinking abilities can be a tremendous asset.
Legal assistants rely on numerous individuals; many depend on them to get the job done. No matter how big the office is, this still holds. To be successful, they must see themselves as valuable members of a broader team rather than as individuals working alone. Additionally, since they are rarely the centre of attention, legal assistants should be prepared to accept their position as a crucial supporting component.
Courses to Become a Legal Assistant
|Course Name||Course Duration||Total Fee (Approx.)|
|BALLB||5 Years||INR 150000 to 1100000|
|B.ScLLB||5 Years||INR 200000 to 1100000|
|BBALLB||5 Years||INR 200000 to 1600000|
|B.ComLLB||5 Years||INR 200000 to 1100000|
|B.TechLLB||6 Years||INR 200000 to 1600000|
|LLB||3 Years||INR 150000 to 1500000|
|Diploma in Paralegal Practice||1 to 2 Years||INR 8000 to 15000|
Types of Job Roles Legal Assistant
(I) Legal Assistant
(III) Notary Public
(IV) Oath Commissioner
(VI) Legal Advisor
(VII) Legal Officer
(VIII) Law Inspector
Employment Opportunities for Legal Assistant
(I) Corporate Businesses
(II) Law Firms
(III) Consulting Firms
(IV) Political Parties
(VI) Media and Entertainment Houses
(VII) Engineering Firms
(VIII) Information Technology Companies
Top Recruiting Agencies for Legal Assistant
(I) Disys India Private Limited
(II) Amazon India
(III) Allied Legal
(IV) Jobingo Management solutions
(V) Aditya Music IndiaPvt Limited
(VI) Bharja Technologies
(VII) Adzuna India
(VIII) Ministry of Health and Family Welfare
How Much Does a Legal Assistant Make?
Legal assistant salary varies depending on practice area, level of expertise, and location, with better pay for those working in metropolitan regions or particular states.
Entry-Level – INR 1,89,000
Mid-level – INR 4,05,000
Senior- Level – INR 9,22,000
Frequently Asked Questions on Legal Assistant
Ans: They are responsible for researching and preparing the first draft of the documents, updating files, and managing legal documents.
Q. What is the most a legal assistant can make?
Ans: A legal Assistant can make up to INR 9,22,000.
Q. What skills do legal assistants need?
Ans: Some essential skills include Multi-Tasking, Adaptability, Writing Skills, and Technical Skills.
Ans: It is a tough job.