A paralegal position is a great career to break into given the excitement it has, the human interest value, as well as the pay and potential for long-term job stability. This is a job that will be maintained by a law firm or a lawyer…but then again, it’s a career that will always be in demand, considering how many lawyers are out there. Besides that, there are numerous companies that hire in-house paralegals to help them organize and research important laws.
Of course, this is a challenging field to break into. Paralegals must have a formal education in paralegal studies or a related field of law. Most firms prefer to hire applicants with a Bachelor’s or Master’s Degree, or at least an Associate’s Degree. Some may even prefer official Paralegal Certification, which only requires a short study course.
The good news is that paralegals make good money. While the median wage is about $46,000, the highest ten percentile makes about $74,000. Usually paralegals who work in big cities make more money than small town paralegals. However, small town paralegals stand a chance to assume more responsibility, and perform more important tasks for attorneys. Paralegals can also make a healthy income working for corporations and even government agencies. Paralegal colleges can prepare you for the journey ahead.
In terms of job opportunities, the paralegal field is expected to grow by 18% in the next decade. And here’s a tidbit that might get you excited. As the recession continues in the U.S. many employers are downsizing. One of the best ways to downsize is to hire paralegals as a means of reducing costs. Companies are rebuilding support staff. Furthermore, companies are discovering that paralegals can offer services for much cheaper than attorneys. So even if you can’t find work from an attorney you could be operating in a similar capacity to a corporate attorney—someone who is mainly paid to research and ensure legal safety.
Paralegals are a growing trend in the U.S. economy, and let’s face it—they are difficult to “outsource” overseas. If you want job stability, good pay and want to work in an exciting field then paralegal training is a great opportunity. Why not look into schools that offer online programs? As long as the school is accredited and is recognized by the American Bar Association, then you can do all of your schoolwork online and not have to rewrite your life schedule!