Among the many careers to choose from, legal work is perhaps one of the most lucrative fields. It requires years of study and education, but the financial rewards are great. For those interested in becoming a paralegal or legal assistant as a profession, there is much to learn about the career as far as training, types of paralegals, and average salaries. If you are curious about paralegal salary or would like to know more about how to increase your current paralegal salary, consider these few tips.
Whys is a paralegal paid the way they are?
Paralegals are those who assist qualified, trained lawyers with legal work. In the United States, paralegals are not authorized to offer the same legal services that lawyer or attorney have the privilege of doing, but paralegals are still exposed to the same types of cases. In other countries, certified paralegals are able to practice law without the use of a lawyer.
An average legal assistant & paralegal salary?
Paralegal salaries range depending on the amount of training, certification, and schooling a paralegal has gone through. Paralegal pay is also determined by the type of law one goes in to.
For a paralegal just starting out, salaries are between $40,000 and $50,000.
For paralegal managers, which supervise other paralegals and have additional responsibilities, the average salary is $85,000.
For a paralegal who teaches college courses about becoming a paralegal, the average salary is $70,000.
For paralegal supervisors, whose main responsibilities involve the supervising of documents, work flow, and contracts, the average salary is $70,000.
Things that can be done to increase a paralegal salary
Because paralegal salaries vary according to experience and education levels, paralegals are able to increase their salaries. If you are a paralegal seeking a higher salary, consider these few tips:- Receive additional education
Those who have higher degrees typically make more money. Consider going back to school for an additional degree or to receive a higher degree, such as a master's or doctorate. You may even want to consider going to law school.
It is estimated that 44% of paralegals have a bachelor's degree and only 19% of paralegals do not have a degree. The pay scale for paralegals are commiserate with the amount of education a paralegal receives. When a paralegal has a higher degree, they generally get paid more.
If you are looking to increase your current paralegal salary, going back to school and receiving additional training may raise your current salary by up to 30%.- Become certified in a specific field of law
Consider receiving additional certification that authorizes you to work in a specific field. This might include fields such as probate, business law, civil trial, and litigation. When paralegals have additional certifications, they are entitled to a higher salary range.
Paralegals can receive these additional certifications by taking a national exam, taking courses at a college that certifies students, or going through their individual firm to become certified.
The Projected Growth of a Paralegal Salary
According to statistics by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, paralegal and legal assistant careers are estimated to grow on an average of eighteen percent in the next 10 years. This means there will be a greater need for a paralegal, and as such, more in demand fields require salary increases.