Law firms and businesses rely on paralegal and legal assistants to perform a variety of legal tasks. Students interested in online paralegal programs can earn an online paralegal certificate , an online paralegal associate degree , or an online paralegal bachelor’s degree .
Paralegals help lawyers prepare for trials and meetings ; they also conduct research on relevant laws and regulations , study legal articles , and create reports .
Their responsibilities vary depending on the type of legal practice ; some paralegals help prepare mortgages and other financial documents , while others investigate , collect , and organise evidence for court hearings .
Paralegals in large firms often specialise in a particular area of law , whereas those in small firms often work on cases from beginning to end . The paralegal profession has expanded in recent years as public agencies , private law firms , and corporations recognise that employing paralegals increases their efficiency and cost-effectiveness .
The minimum education required for paralegals is a certificate in paralegal studies . However , employers typically , prefer candidates with more education . Bachelor’s programs in paralegal studies are less common than paralegal certificate and associate programs .
According to the Bureau of Labrato Statistics (BLS) , some aspiring paralegals earn a bachelor’s degree in another subject , such as criminal justice or law and then pursue a paralegal certificate .