Can A Paralegal Work From Home? The Truth About Remote Legal Assistants

By Robert David Orr / Last updated: Dec 19, 2022

Paralegals are lawyers’ assistants who help with legal research, writing documents, and filing court papers and all kinds of other legal work.

But can this work as a paralegal be done as a work from home job or remotely?

Yes! In fact, many paralegals work from home. Not only do they earn good money – the median pay for paralegals and legal assistants, virtual, working from home, or remote is $56,230 or $27.03 per hour – they also enjoy a lot more flexibility and work-life-balance working remotely.

So how can you find a job as a remote or virtual paralegal?

Where can you find job openings?

What do you need to know about working from home as a paralegal?

In this article, we’ll answer these questions and more. We’ll talk about what it takes to become a paralegal, where to look for jobs, and even how to prepare yourself for the interview process so you have the best chance of winning the job.

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Do paralegals work from home?Do paralegals work from home?

 

Working from home has become increasingly popular in recent years, and paralegals are no exception.

While paralegal work does not entail the same legal responsibilities as that of an attorney, they still play an important role in the legal process, performing tasks such as research, preparing documents, and communicating with clients.

In order to work from home, paralegals must meet certain requirements set by their employer, including having a quiet and private workspace and access to a reliable computer and high-speed internet connection.

Additionally, they must be able to maintain strict confidentiality and adhere to deadlines. While working from home can offer a number of benefits, it’s not for everyone. Those who are not self-motivated or who prefer face-to-face interaction may find it more difficult to succeed in this type of environment.

Remote virtual paralegal – a typical day

Working from home as a virtual paralegal can be a great way to earn a living while enjoying the flexibility and freedom that comes with working from home.

Virtual paralegals typically work for legal firms or individual attorneys, providing support with legal research, drafting documents, and preparing for court hearings. While the specific duties of a virtual paralegal may vary depending on the needs of their employer, there are some common responsibilities and requirements that all virtual paralegals share.

For example, most virtual paralegals are expected to have excellent written and verbal communication skills, as well as strong research and organizational abilities.

In addition, virtual paralegals must be able to work independently and meet deadlines.

A typical day in the life of a virtual paralegal may include tasks such as conducting legal research, drafting documents, communicating with clients, and preparing for court hearings.

While the work of a virtual paralegal can be challenging, it can also be highly rewarding. Those who enjoy the idea of working in the legal arena and are interested helping others resolve their legal issues will find that working as a virtual paralegal is a perfect fit.

What are the requirements to work as a paralegal from home?

Paralegals are an important part of the legal team, providing support to lawyers and assisting with legal research, investigation, and writing. In recent years, the rise of technology has allowed many paralegals to work from home. While this arrangement has its benefits, there are also some challenges. Below is a list of requirements for working as a paralegal from home.

First, you must have strong legal research and writing skills. This is essential for drafting legal documents and researching cases. Second, you must be able to stay organized and manage your time effectively. This is important for meeting deadlines and keeping track of legal files. Third, you must have excellent communication skills. This is necessary for communicating with clients and other members of the legal team. Finally, you must be comfortable working independently. This is important for being able to focus on your work and meet deadlines.

If you have all of the above requirements, then working as a paralegal from home may be a good option for you. However, it is important to keep in mind that there are some challenges that come with this arrangement. For example, you will need to be self-motivated and disciplined in order to meet deadlines and provide quality work product. Additionally, you may need to put in extra hours during busy times or when working on complex cases. But if you are willing to put in the work, then working as a paralegal from home can be a rewarding experience.

What are the pros and cons of being a paralegal who works remotely?

What are the pros and cons of being a paralegal who works remotely?

There are many advantages to working as a virtual paralegal.

You can work from anywhere

One of the biggest pros of being a virtual paralegal is that you can work from anywhere. All you need is a computer and an internet connection, and you can work from the comfort of your own home, a coffee shop, or even a co-working space. This flexibility can be a huge benefit for those who have young children or who simply prefer to work outside of a traditional office setting.

You can create your own schedule

For virtual paralegals that are independent contractors, another big pro is that you can create your own schedule. For a freelance paralegal, this means that you can work when it is convenient for you, whether that means working during the day, at night, or on weekends. This flexibility can be a great perk for those who have other commitments outside of work or who simply prefer to have more control over their time.

You don’t have to commute

Another perk of being a virtual paralegal is that you don’t have to commute. This can save you both time and money, as you won’t have to spend time travelling to and from an office every day. Additionally, it can be beneficial for the environment as there will be less traffic on the roads.

You don’t need expensive office equipment

When you work as a virtual paralegal, you also don’t need expensive office equipment. All you need is a computer and an internet connection, which means that you can save money on things like office rent, furniture, and supplies.

You can meet people from all over the world

Another great thing about being a virtual paralegal is that you can meet people from all over the world. With technology making it easier than ever to connect with people online, you’ll have no problem meeting new clients and colleagues from all corners of the globe.

You can learn new skills easily

Since being a virtual paralegal requires you to use technology on a daily basis, it’s easy to learn new skills quickly. Whether you want to learn how to use new software or simply improve your communication skills, being a virtual paralegal will give you the opportunity to do so quickly and easily.

You’re always in demand

Another big pro of being a virtual paralegal is that there is always demand for your services. As more and more businesses move online and require assistance with things like legal research and document preparation, the demand for virtual paralegals will only continue to grow. This means that there are plenty of opportunities for those who want to enter this field.

Additionally, virtual paralegals often enjoy greater autonomy than their counterparts in brick-and-mortar law office. This means you can usually take on as much or as little work as you want, without having to worry about meeting someone else’s expectations. Of course this doesn’t apply if you’re employed by a law firm.

Many report their careers as a virtual paralegal as extremely rewarding. You’ll have the satisfaction of knowing that you’re using your skills to help people through some of the most difficult times in their lives. If you’re looking for an exciting and rewarding career, then becoming a virtual paralegal is definitely worth considering.

While there are many advantages to being a virtual paralegal, there are also some disadvantages.

Fewer Opportunities to Network

One of the primary disadvantages of being a virtual paralegal is that there are fewer opportunities to network. When you work virtually, you don’t have the same opportunity to meet other paralegals and build relationships. This can make it more difficult to find a job if you’re ever looking to switch firms or move to a new city.

More Isolation

Another downside of being a virtual paralegal is that you may feel more isolated from your colleagues. When you work in an office, you have the opportunity to interact with others on a daily basis. But when you work virtually, you may only interact with your colleagues via email or phone, which can lead to feelings of isolation.

Difficult to Prove Yourself

If you’re a new paralegal, it can be difficult to prove yourself if you’re working virtually. When you’re in an office, your boss can see how hard you’re working and how well you’re doing. But when you’re working virtually, it’s harder to demonstrate your value and worth to your employer.

Limited Opportunities for Advancement

Another disadvantage of being a virtual paralegal is that there may be limited opportunities for advancement. If you’re working virtually, you may not have the same opportunity to take on additional responsibilities or projects that would help you advance in your career.

Requires A Lot Of Self-Discipline

Working virtually also requires a great deal of self-discipline. When you’re in an office, there are usually set hours during which you’re expected to work. But when you work virtually, it’s up to you to set your own hours and stick to them. This can be difficult for some people, as there’s no one else around to hold them accountable for their work

Work-Life Balance

Work-life balance is a challenge for virtually everyone who works from home because it’s a lot harder to “leave the office” when your office is your home. While this can be beneficial in certain situations, it can also become overwhelming. It’s important to establish boundaries between work and personal life so that you can maintain a healthy work-life balance.

Other disadvantages are that you can’t build the same type of relationships with clients that you can in person. When you meet with clients in person, you have the opportunity to build rapport and trust.

You can also get a better sense of their personalities and what type of communication style they prefer. With virtual clients, it can be more difficult to build this type of relationship, which can make it harder to provide the best possible service.

Additionally, virtual paralegals may also find it more difficult to stay up to date on the latest changes in the law. Without the banter and water cooler discussions that happen in a traditional office, it can be a little more difficult to stay up to date.

When you work in an office, you have access to colleagues who can keep you informed about any new developments. When you work remotely, you may not have the same level of access to these types of resources.

As a result, it’s important to make sure that you are taking the time to stay informed about any changes that could affect your practice. Despite these disadvantages, being a virtual paralegal can be a great way to provide quality legal services without having to commute or deal with office politics.

What specifically does a remote paralegal do?

What specifically does a remote paralegal do?

According to the American Bar Association, paralegals are legal professionals:

A paralegal is a person, qualified by education, training or work experience who is employed or retained by a lawyer, law office, corporation, governmental agency or other entity and who performs specifically delegated substantive legal work.

Attorneys contract paralegal help for conducting research, preparing documents, and managing files among other things on a wide variety of legal matters.

Work from home paralegals generally have a high degree of autonomy and are expected to be able to work independently.

However, they may also be required to collaborate with other members of the legal team remotely.

The ability to access key information and resources remotely is essential for this role. As a result, work from home paralegals must be highly organized and have excellent research skills.

Typically a paralegal is a full-time employee of the firm they work for, but that’s not always the case.

There are many in the paralegal profession who are freelancers and independent contractors who work on a project-by-project basis.

What resources do you need to work from home as a paralegal?

Working from home as a paralegal has become increasingly popular in recent years, thanks to the tools and resources that are readily available online. However, there are a few essentials that every paralegal should have in order to work from home effectively.

First, it is important to have a dedicated workspace. This could be a spare bedroom or a corner of the living room, but it is important to have a space where you can focus on your work without distractions.

Second, you will need a good internet connection. A reliable wifi connection is essential for accessing legal research tools like LexisNexis and Westlaw.

Third, you will need a printer and scanner. These days, many paralegals rely heavily on electronic filing, but there are still times when hard copies are required.

It’s also quite helpful to have a secure filing cabinet where you can store physical copies of documents.

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Where can you find work from home paralegal jobs?

Where can you find work from home paralegal jobs?

If you’re looking for a remote paralegal job, there are a number of websites that can help. Many law firms and legal organizations list their open positions on their website. When searching for a remote paralegal job, be sure to specify that you are looking for a telecommuting position. This will help you weed out jobs that are not a good fit for what you’re looking to do.

Indeed

One of the best places to start your search for a remote paralegal job is on indeed. Indeed is a job search engine that allows you to search for jobs by location, keyword, and company. You can also set up job alerts so that you will be notified when new remote paralegal jobs are posted.

Flexjobs

Flexjobs is a job board that specializes in telecommuting and remote jobs. You can search for remote paralegal jobs by keyword, category, or location. Flexjobs also offers a subscription service that gives you access to their database of over 50,000 telecommuting and remote jobs.

Upwork

Upwork is a freelancing platform that connects businesses with freelancers from all over the world. You can search for remote paralegal jobs by keyword or category. Once you find a job that you’re interested in, you can submit a proposal to the business detailing your qualifications and rates.

Craigslist

Craigslist is a classified ads website that has a section devoted to job postings and can be a a clever way to find opportunities to gain paralegal experience. You can search for remote paralegal jobs by location and keyword. While craigslist can be a great resource for finding telecommuting jobs, it’s important to be aware of scams as they are common on the platform.

Linkedin

Linkedin is a social networking site for professionals. You can search for remote paralegal jobs by keyword or location. Linkedin also allows you to connect with other professionals in your field, which can be helpful when searching for a job.

Glassdoor

Glassdoor is a website that allows employees to anonymously review companies and rate their satisfaction with their employer. You can use glassdoor to research companies that have been known to hire remote workers and then check their job postings to see if they have any openings for paralegals.

Virtual Vocations

Virtual vocations is a job board that specializes in telecommuting jobs. You can search for remote paralegal jobs by keyword, category, or location. Virtual vocations also offers a subscription service that gives you access to their database of over 5,000 telecommuting jobs.

The Balance Careers

The balance careers is a website that provides career advice and job listings across multiple industries. You can use their “advanced job search” tool to filter only remote paralegal jobs by selecting “telecommute” under the “location” drop-down menu.

We Work Remotely

We work remotely is a job board that specializes in telecommuting jobs. You can search for remote paralegal jobs by keyword, category, or location.

Are there different kinds of remote paralegal jobs?

Are there different kinds of remote paralegal jobs?

As varied as the different areas of law practice there are, so too are varied the opportunities for remote paralegals.

In-house remote paralegal

An in-house remote paralegal is an employee of a law firm who works remotely, either from home or from another location outside of the office. In-house remote paralegals typically have the same job duties as traditional in-office paralegals, but they are not required to be physically present in the office.

Contract remote paralegal

A contract remote paralegal is an independent contractor who provides paralegal services to a law firm on a contractual basis. Contract remote paralegals typically have the same job duties as traditional in-office paralegals, but they are not required to be physically present in the office.

Virtual remote paralegal

A virtual remote paralegal is an independent contractor who provides paralegal services to a law firm on a virtual basis. Virtual remote paralegals typically work online and do not have to be physically present in the office.

Freelance remote paralegal

A freelance remote paralegal is an independent contractor who provides paralegal services to a law firm on a freelance basis. Freelance remote paralegals typically have the same job duties as traditional in-office paralegals, but they are not required to be physically present in the office.

Project-based remote paralegal

A project-based remote paralegal is an independent contractor who provides paralegal services on a contract basis to a law firm on a project basis. Project-based remote paralegals typically have the same job duties as traditional in-office paralegals, but they are not required to be physically present in the office.

Litigation remote paralegal

Litigation paralegals provide support to lawyers during the litigation process. They are responsible for tasks such as conducting legal research, drafting pleadings and discovery requests, and managing document production.

Corporate remote paralegal

Corporate paralegals provide support to lawyers who represent businesses and corporations. Their duties include tasks such as researching state and federal laws, preparing corporate documents, and filing annual reports with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

And that’s not all. You could find work as a real estate paralegal, intellectual property paralegal, environmental law paralegal, and more.

What is the demand for remote paralegal jobs?

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics the job outlook for paralegals is very good and expected to grow much faster than average over the next 10 years.

In today’s job market, more and more job seekers are looking for opportunities that allow them to work remotely. And paralegals are no exception. While the job description of a remote paralegal is similar to that of an on-site paralegal, there are some key differences. For instance, remote paralegals must be able to work independently and maintain a high level of self-motivation. They must also have strong time-management skills and be able to juggle multiple deadlines.

So, is there a demand for paralegals working from home? The answer is yes. In recent years, there has been a growing demand for this kind of work that can be delivered remotely. And the covid-19 pandemic proved that the demands of this kind of work can easily be done working from home or remotely.

And as the demand for remote legal services grows, so does the demand for remote paralegals. Currently, there are many job openings for remote paralegals across the country.

What skills do I need to be a successful remote paralegal?

What skills do I need to be a successful remote paralegal?

What are the educational requirements? Do you need to get a paralegal certificate? Do you need anything more than associate degree? What kind of work experience do you need?

If you’re interested in pursuing a career as a legal professional, education is going to be foundation of everything you do.

Finding a paralegal program that will help you to become a qualified paralegal who is able to put together an attractive job application for potential employers is a must.

In order to be a successful remote paralegal, you must have strong written and oral communication skills, as well as excellent organizational skills.

You must also be able to work independently and be comfortable using technology, as most communication with clients and co-workers will take place via email or video conferencing software. Finally, it is important to be familiar with the different types of software that are used by lawyers and law firms in order to perform your job duties effectively.

How to become a remote paralegal

Paralegals and legal assistant usually have at least an associate’s degrees or certificates in paralegal studies. Some employers may hire college graduates without any legal training or specialized education and then train them on the job, especially if they need someone who has specific skills for which there aren’t enough qualified applicants.

So what’s next?

Determine if you meet the basic qualifications

The first step to becoming a remote paralegal is to make sure you meet the basic qualifications. To qualify for most positions, you will need at least an associate’s degree in paralegal studies or a related field. In some cases, employers may require a bachelor’s degree. Additionally, you will need to have strong research and writing skills and be proficient in using computers and various software programs.

Gain experience

Once you have determined that you meet the basic qualifications, the next step is to gain experience. Many employers prefer to hire candidates with at least two years of experience working as a paralegal. If you do not have any experience, consider volunteering or interning with a law firm or legal department to get your foot in the door.

Get certified

While certification is not required to become a paralegal, it can make you more attractive to potential employers. There are several different certification programs available, such as the certified paralegal (cp) exam offered by the National Association Of Legal Assistants (NALA). To be eligible to take the cp exam, you must have at least two years of experience working as a paralegal.

Join professional organizations

Another way to make yourself more attractive to potential employers is to join professional organizations, such as the american association for paralegals (aap) or the national federation of paralegal associations (nfpa). These organizations offer membership benefits such as job boards, networking opportunities, and educational resources.

Search for remote positions

Once you have met the qualifications and gained some experience, you can begin searching for remote positions. There are several ways to find these positions, such as searching online job boards or contacting law firms and legal departments directly. You can also search for companies that offer remote work arrangements in general and inquire about open positions.

Submit your resume and cover letter

When applying for remote paralegal positions, be sure to submit a professional resume and cover letter. Your resume should highlight your education, experience, skills, and certifications. In your cover letter, explain why you are interested in the position and why you would be a good fit for the role. Be sure to proofread both documents carefully before submitting them.

In addition, make sure that you address why you want to work from home, even if it’s just a brief statement. Employers are going to want to have a clear understanding of why you are interested in a remote position, so make sure to address it in your cover letter.

Next steps

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Robert David Orr

Robert is a writer & creator, author of the WordPress Website Blueprint, award winning web developer, and leader in digital strategy. He's also a tenured work at home veteran who's been working from home for more than 10 years. Learn more. Got questions? Reach out and connect here - Contact Home Office Hacks here.

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