About Paralegal Answers

ABOUT THE WEBSITE

This website is dedicated to providing assistance to anyone needing to know key skills and information about the career of paralegal that can take many years to learn via on-the-job-training.  Given the volatility and competitiveness of the job market these days, you need to have an edge, and not just to GET that coveted job, but to KEEP IT.  You really cannot afford to make big mistakes, and this website is the product this author’s heartfelt efforts to share information that was learned with almost 20 years of baptism by fire in this career.  The sole purpose is to warn others of the potential pitfalls in the day to day activities that can occur due to simple lack of experience.

Lesson No. 1:  LEARN FROM SOMEONE ELSE’S MISTAKES, NOT YOUR OWN!

While a college education in the area of paralegal is important, it is a building block to what a paralegal becomes.  College paralegal courses do not teach themechanics of being a paralegal, i.e., what a paralegal actually does on a day-to-day basis.  They are geared toward teaching the law and exposing students to the legal foundations and thought processes behind how the legal profession works. That is critical information, but it’s not enough to make you a good paralegal.

The most important things you can do for an attorney to make your performance stand out is to know how to handle the mechanical aspects of the tasks you are asked to complete, be able to quickly learn new skills, be self-motivating, and be counted on to head off problems or intercept mistakes before they leave the office.

About the Author

This website is written by a practicing paralegal with almost twenty (20) years of experience as a litigation paralegal.  The majority of those years were spent working in insurance defense litigation and general civil litigation, over four (4) years … [Continue reading]

Certificate of Service

At the end of almost every document filed with the court you will see this: Certificate of Service             I hereby certify that a complete copy of the foregoing instrument has been served upon the following counsel of record by placing the same … [Continue reading]

Bates Stamping

Bates Stamping Machine

In the days of legal practice between the time of the dinosaur and the computer, the discovery phase of litigation still existed.  Over the years, it was realized that some safeguards needed to be put into place to protect the integrity of the legal … [Continue reading]

Request for Production

Request for Production - Paper Stack

The discovery process of any litigation is a period of time that begins at the filing of the Complaint and Answer, and the trial setting.  In some instances, a judge will issue a Scheduling Order which may set a deadline of thirty or sixty … [Continue reading]

Discovery Deadlines

discovery deadline-calendar

Watch your deadlines!  In Alabama, circuit court cases (which include most civil and domestic cases), a party will have only thirty (30) days from the date they are issued to answer discovery requests (whether interrogatories, requests for production … [Continue reading]

Timekeeping

Timekeeping - Clock

Timekeeping is almost self-explanatory.  It means keeping up with your time.  Before explaining what timekeeping is, it is necessary to have a brief overview of how attorneys get paid. There are three primary ways they get paid. The first is on a … [Continue reading]

Notice of Discovery

Several years ago the clerks of court in my area made a change.  No longer did they accept full sets of discovery (whether questions or answers) to be filed in the Court’s file.  Keeping full sets of discovery documents, which could sometimes expand … [Continue reading]