Legal assistants have important roles in the legal world. They assist lawyers in many different ways, all of which are essential to ensuring that court proceedings and trials operate efficiently and effectively. A legal assistant may help draft legal documents, gather research, schedule meetings and interviews, and provide other means of assistance to lawyers during and before trials.
With such a variety of responsibilities in the legal realm, a good legal assistant must be equipped with a diverse range of skills in order to keep everything running smoothly. If you’re considering becoming a legal assistant, these five skills could be a huge help.
If You’re Considering Legal Assistant College, Technology Skills Will Be Important
As technology continues to advance, its importance in the legal world has continued to grow. For prospective legal assistants, this means that the ability to utilize computer software applications effectively will be essential on the job. Graduates of a legal assistant program work with a range of different technologies on a regular basis, including, but not limited to:
- Microsoft Office Suite: Legal assistants help to create and handle legal documents, which requires a solid grasp of the Microsoft Office Suite.
- Invoicing: Legal assistants may need to know how to utilize invoicing software in order to carry out billing for a lawyer’s services.
- Document Organization: Legal assistants are responsible for storing and organizing a large amount of important documents, and they must know how to utilize software programs to access and store these files.
Attention To Detail
For anyone with a legal assistant diploma, attention to detail is an essential skill. Legal assistants handle important legal documents on a regular basis, and can be tasked with drafting documents, transcribing audio recordings for official use, and more. All of these responsibilities require a high level of attention to detail—in the legal world, even a simple mistake could have serious implications.
Legal assistants spend a good deal of their time corresponding by phone and email. For this reason, communication and interpersonal skills are essential for legal assistants to possess. As representatives of the attorney they work for, legal assistants must have excellent written communication skills in order to draft emails and file memos, and must utilize proper phone etiquette and interpersonal skills when talking to clients or other parties.
Attorneys rely on legal assistants to perform a wide range of duties for them. Thus, it’s essential that a legal assistant possesses the organizational skills to keep track of deadlines and ensure that attorneys are prepared for court proceedings. Legal assistants must be able to maintain an attorney’s calendar, keep files in order, and schedule meetings, on top of a range of additional responsibilities. If you have great organizational skills, a legal assistant career could be right for you.
This quality is essential for anyone in a legal assistant role. Legal assistants deal with private documents and sensitive information on a regular basis, and they must be able to treat the information they handle discreetly and confidentially. Otherwise, they run the risk of jeopardizing the legal process and relevant court proceedings.
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