If you find careers in law appealing, there is a variety of law firm jobs that employers are posting, even for people who don't have a direct connection to this branch.
When someone brings up the legal sector, the first things that usually come to mind are courtrooms and lawyers defending their clients in lawsuits. However, there is much more than meets the eye. Establishing a company, drafting a contract, and even transferring money or property are just a few examples of tasks where a law firm’s assistance is indispensable.
People with different levels of expertise perform a range of tasks in law firms, including bookkeeping, IT, and operations management. They all work together in various law office jobs to ensure the firm is running smoothly week in, week out. All of these dedicated team members collaborating toward the same goal is a recipe for success in any firm.
Most Interesting Jobs at a Law Firm (Editor’s Pick)
Legal Jobs Outlook
If you’re currently browsing “law firm jobs near me" on your recruitment website of choice, you might have noticed in your job search that there are many positions available at the moment. The popularity of positions in the legal sector was less than ideal in the early 2000s. However, projections show that the sector will continue to grow throughout 2022.
Needless to say, lawyers are always the most sought-after occupation. Coming in at a close second are legal secretaries, legal assistants, and paralegals, while fewer people are seeking administrative, business, and management positions. Moreover, law firm recruiting jobs are expected to rise as well.
Current Trends in the Sector
Interestingly, there is a noticeable decrease in the employment of legal secretaries. In turn, attorneys and paralegals find themselves picking up some of the legal secretaries' duties. When it comes to other jobs at a law firm, projections reveal that paralegal and legal assistant positions should experience a significantly higher than average increase.
So, why are law firms hiring more paralegals and legal assistants? The answer lies in the firms’ strategy aimed at increasing efficiency and decreasing costs by delegating tasks previously handled by lawyers.
The Legal Landscape in 2022
Projections also show that an average increase in employment awaits lawyers, accountants, bookkeepers, and general managers, depending on the growth of the legal industry. Legal firms hiring more professionals for such positions have to do with the changing legal landscape after the COVID-19 pandemic.
According to a survey conducted in 2021, demand for legal services increased by 6.5% among well-known regional law firms. However, this trend is also the consequence of some unfavorable aspects of the legal profession.
For instance, lawyers tend to suffer from burnout quite a bit as they are expected to put in long hours. This is why wellness programs are now among the benefits employers are offering to spur interest among candidates to join their teams.
An In-Depth Look Into Popular Law Firm Jobs
Even though law firm positions don’t pertain to lawyers only, they are certainly the heart of the business. Lawyers are much more than well-dressed people making a final statement before the court.
For the most part, lawyers spend their time outside courtrooms, preparing and checking heaps of documentation and advising their clients. All of the tasks involved make it one of the most demanding law firm jobs.
Other job responsibilities include preparing and giving legal advice, supervising, and drafting documents such as wills, deeds, and contracts, and providing legal representation in courts over a variety of matters.
Different positions in a law firm require the candidates to be analytical and observing, always up-to-date with the latest laws, rules, and regulations. Problem-solving and excellent communication skills are also a must. To top everything off, being persuasive and self-confident is what makes an attorney stand out.
Becoming a Lawyer
When submitting your resume, keep in mind that coping well with deadlines and pressure is of utmost importance if you want to work for a law firm. That kind of commitment and ability can make you stand out as a potential candidate. Being able to make an excellent presentation, both written and oral, is also valuable, as lawyers need to possess stellar interpersonal and presentation skills.
The path to becoming a law firm lawyer may differ depending on the country and the legal system. It usually takes several years of formal education and practice before a person can work independently. Internships are a big plus and an excellent chance for young graduates to acquire the necessary training. Part-time law firm jobs can also be beneficial in this regard.
Although lawyers are typically independent in their work, they need to have a sense of team spirit. Working as part of a team usually includes managing paralegals and an associate or two.
When it comes to salary expectations, attorneys can make anywhere between $80,000 and $180,000 per year, depending on their level of expertise and years of practicing law. The average salary lawyers earn is around $120,000 per year, which is above average in most locations. Salaries are negotiable, and in some companies, you can get commissions from completing various projects or winning a big case in court.
Working at a law firm as an assistant means you’ll likely find employment as a paralegal. The typical tasks paralegals perform daily include drafting and preparing documents, contacting clients by phone, and assisting attorneys in other legal duties.
As a paralegal, you must be impeccably organized and ready to excel in a fast-paced environment where many things happen simultaneously. In other words, you need to be a natural multitasker. During your time as a paralegal, you will get a glimpse of other law firm careers you’ll have the option of switching to later.
Paralegals’ duties may vary depending on their company’s area of specialization. The type of tasks assigned to such a law firm assistant depends on the size of the team in question and the person’s level of expertise. However, keep in mind that paralegals cannot give legal advice or represent people and companies in court.
Most jobs in law offices tend to offer a decent salary. Paralegals' earnings are dictated by several factors, but their income is based mostly on previous experience and education. On average, these professionals can earn up to $50,000 per year, with the possibility of earning additional income if they’re involved in commission-based projects.
When it comes to careers in law without being a lawyer, becoming a record clerk is at the top of the list. The best thing about becoming a record clerk is that this position requires absolutely no law-related education. It means that even people without a degree in this field can aim for engaging and respectable law firm jobs.
Record clerks are usually in charge of organizing and maintaining all types of records and have many duties in the firm. Examples of such assignments include assisting their superiors, ordering supplies, and copying materials.
A high-school diploma is sufficient to make you eligible for such law firm jobs for non-lawyers. Besides this formal requirement, you'll need to have soft skills, for instance, to communicate effectively.
NOTE: If you're having second thoughts about the validity or importance of this position, stop. Record clerks have a vital role since lawyers and managers rely on their organizational prowess.
Remember that record clerks are a prime example of crucial jobs in a law firm without a law degree. Without these committed professionals, attorneys would not be able to do their work.
Having a degree in accounting can open up numerous opportunities to build a career in diverse organizations. Every company needs someone responsible, organized, and always up-to-date on current regulations, which is where law firm accounting jobs come into the picture.
Law firm management usually prefers those with strong analytical and numerical skills and attention to detail for the position of bookkeeper. Besides, you need to hold a diploma in bookkeeping or, ideally, a degree in accounting for more prominent firms with more complex systems.
An average-sized law firm would usually offer a yearly salary of approximately $50,000. Still, for more demanding finance jobs in law firms, the compensation can well exceed this figure.
Being an IT expert means you can find employment in virtually any industry. These range from IT companies to retail and service-oriented enterprises, even law office employment nowadays. The IT industry has been on the rise in the past decade and, now more than ever, every company must have IT experts.
Law firm IT jobs mostly involve maintaining information systems in impeccable condition. The legal sector is a fast-paced industry where speed and problem-solving are essential, all the more conspicuous when a system error occurs. Among other duties, you'll typically maintain the server and solve ad hoc issues that may arise.
If you’re in IT or are attending IT classes or courses, such an environment may prove ideal. It’s a good idea to set up job alerts for law firm jobs for college students or even law firm jobs part-time.
What first comes to mind upon hearing about jobs in a law firm is the image of lawyers. But being a lawyer also means wearing several hats - performing the duties of a paralegal, clerk, office manager, etc. To coordinate and oversee all of these activities and departments, there is always a general manager.
Among law office careers, the general manager is in charge of all departments and resources. General managers work closely with the HR department to supervise their employees so that they can establish effective strategies and attain superior results.
GM’s Role in Ensuring the Firm Is Lucrative
Law firm manager jobs are intended for financially savvy professionals who must be experts in cash flow and revenue. These professionals are responsible for the results achieved at the end of the fiscal year, and generating profit is one of their main concerns.
Having positive results while representing their clients in various legal matters can create more business and increase revenue. Besides income, general managers have to pay attention to the firm's expenses — where it spends the most and how to reduce expenditures.
To perform the duty of a general manager, an individual needs to have years of experience managing small and large teams. Education-wise, you need at least a bachelor's degree in economics or business management.
Law firm job openings rarely include the position of general manager, as the candidate is typically selected by promoting an employee who has already achieved excellence at the firm. A general manager's salary is determined on the basis of numerous factors and is individually negotiated.
Last but not least, every firm needs to have support staff. These are people who make sure everything is in place, from legal files and documents to paperwork and office supplies. They save their teammates’ precious time by ensuring everything is running smoothly.
Additionally, support staff can assist with the grunt work in legal cases, be it through law firm assistant jobs or even law firm marketing jobs. Support staff is always on site to lend a helping hand whenever necessary.
If you’re interested in entry-level law firm jobs, you shouldn’t disregard a job alert letting you know about a support staff position as it leads to creating contacts, at the very least. When you work at a law firm as support staff, you can gain a deeper understanding of the intricacies of this field from a different perspective.
Whether you’re considering law firm administrator jobs, law firm business development jobs, or law firm investigator jobs, this sector can bring you exciting challenges. Learning to adapt to and overcome such challenges can inspire you as a professional.
The reason law firm jobs are so popular nowadays is that the law touches our everyday lives in countless ways. For a successful professional, it is the perfect environment for self-growth that can provide plenty of ideas as to which direction their career should take.
One thing is certain — you won’t make a mistake with jobs at a law firm because it will always be a nurturing environment for those willing to work hard and learn new values.
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