Legal Secretary programs are designed to prepare students for the challenges of legal work. Depending on the type of role or position that these individuals will fill in their career, there will be a great amount of detail-oriented, specific on-the-job training, but Legal Secretary programs are a great way to enter the field by learning the basic principles and practices that the work will hold. The Legal Secretary role itself is comparable to an executive assistant position. The work is typically comprised of the type of daily clerical functions that can keep a legal office running efficiently, as well as filing, transcription, dictation and managing phone calls. Legal Secretaries should not be confused with Paralegals.
Choosing a school for a Legal Secretary program is essentially no different than choosing a school for any other program. You should begin by listing schools that have programs geared towards helping you reach your career goals. Next, narrow the list down by checking out both the accreditation and reputation of each school and their respective programs. Finally, begin checking on program-specific qualities like job placement services, courses offered and hours required. All that's left now is to choose the program that best matches up with your needs.
Most students looking to become Legal Secretaries study in Associates' Degree programs because they can be completed more swiftly than Bachelors' Degree curricula, and are also typically more affordable while still providing enough qualification to land a job in the field. While in school, students learn industry lingo and the basic principle foundation associated with working in the Legal field. They will also receive coursework pertaining to legal writing, research, legal processes, written communication, filing and, of course, the legal process. Programs can typically be found at 4-year colleges & universities, career training schools and community colleges.
Because the work is largely based on principle comprehension, students are generally able to find Legal Secretary programs online. Like other assistant and secretarial roles, the academic preparation of working in the field is really only one part of preparing for work in this area. Once hired, however, Legal Secretaries will be trained on their employers chosen methods for things like organizing correspondences, legal drafting and handling the majority of all administrative tasks. Much of the legal drafting responsibility is overseen by attorneys and paralegals, as the work deals largely with summonses, complaints, motions and subpoenas.
If you're a high school student weighing your various career options, here are some tips to help you get ahead if you're leaning towards working as a Legal Secretary:
Legal Secretaries are experiencing a particularly optimistic job outlook. In fact, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Legal Secretaries are experiencing a job increase estimated around 18% - larger than any other area of the legal field. Many students earning their education in this field go on to work for not only legal services offices, but also for local and state government units, as well as for employment services. As the Law field continues to grow, however, more and more Legal Secretaries will be able to find jobs working for private attorney firms.
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