Details

Paralegal Career For Dummies


Paralegal Career For Dummies


2. Aufl.

von: Scott A. Hatch, Lisa Zimmer Hatch

16,99 €

Verlag: Wiley
Format: PDF
Veröffentl.: 02.04.2019
ISBN/EAN: 9781119564942
Sprache: englisch
Anzahl Seiten: 384

DRM-geschütztes eBook, Sie benötigen z.B. Adobe Digital Editions und eine Adobe ID zum Lesen.

Beschreibungen

<p><b>Your career as a top-notch paralegal starts here</b></p> <p>The demand for paralegal professionals is exploding, and <i>Paralegal Career For Dummies, 2nd Edition </i>explains the skills and requirements needed to pursue this rewarding career. Inside, you’ll discover the ins and outs of paralegal skills, from preparing documents and performing legal research to obtaining certification, job hunting, and understanding legal concepts.</p> <p>Use this hands-on guide to help in your career considerations, bolster your paralegal training, or as an everyday on-the-job reference. <i>Paralegal Career For Dummies </i>will be your trusty assistant through all phases of your life as a paralegal, taking you forward with tips on networking and joining professional organizations that will enhance your career.</p> <ul> <li>Discover the job skills required for success as a paralegal</li> <li>Learn important legal concepts you’ll need on the job</li> <li>Access forms, templates, and examples on the companion website</li> <li>Develop strategies to manage time and advance your career</li> </ul> <p>Complete with a companion website containing a wealth of valuable information, this book covers everything you need to become a top-notch paralegal.</p>
<p><b>Introduction</b><b> 1</b></p> <p>About This Book 2</p> <p>Foolish Assumptions 2</p> <p>Icons Used in This Book 3</p> <p>Where to Go from Here 4</p> <p><b>Part 1: A Snapshot of the Exciting And Lucrative Paralegal Profession</b> <b>5</b></p> <p><b>Chapter 1: Discovering the Paralegal Profession</b> <b>7</b></p> <p>Almost a Lawyer: What a Paralegal Does 7</p> <p>Researching and analyzing the law 8</p> <p>Playing Sherlock: Interviewing and investigating 8</p> <p>Convening with clients 9</p> <p>Administrating the legal environment 9</p> <p>On the Job: Where Paralegals Work 11</p> <p>The six-figure paralegal: Working for the big firm 11</p> <p>Jack- or Jill-of-all-trades: Working for the small firm 12</p> <p>Spreading the love: The pro bono paralegal 12</p> <p>Working for the government 12</p> <p>Doing it your way: The paralegal as independent contractor 13</p> <p>What it Takes: The Skills, Knowledge, and Training You Need 13</p> <p>The paralegal personality 14</p> <p>Paralegal know-how 15</p> <p>Education and experience: Two ways to train 16</p> <p><b>Chapter 2: Membership Has its Privileges: Paralegal Associations and Their Certification Exams</b><b> 19</b></p> <p>To Join or Not to Join 19</p> <p>Characterizing the types of associations 20</p> <p>Weighing in on whether or not to join an association 21</p> <p>Deciding Whether to Get Certified 22</p> <p>Choosing a certification exam 22</p> <p>Weighing the pros and cons of paralegal certification 24</p> <p><b>Chapter 3: The Hunt is On: Securing a Paralegal Position</b><b> 25</b></p> <p>Finding the Perfect Job 25</p> <p>Traditional sources: Scanning the job boards and turning to placement services 26</p> <p>Networking: It’s who you know 27</p> <p>Creating the Documentation 28</p> <p>Killer cover letters 28</p> <p>Ravishing resumes 30</p> <p>Developing an online profile 33</p> <p>Setting Up Shop: Starting a Freelance Paralegal Business 34</p> <p><b>Part 2: Important Legal Concepts Every Paralegal Should Know</b><b> 37</b></p> <p><b>Chapter 4: “All Rise”: The American Judicial System</b><b> 39</b></p> <p>Everything Old Is New Again: The Importance of Legal Precedence 40</p> <p>Checks and Balances: Branches of U.S Government 42</p> <p>The rule makers: The legislative branch 44</p> <p>The enforcers: The executive branch 45</p> <p>The interpreters: The judicial branch 46</p> <p>Playing Fair: Levels of the U.S Judicial System 46</p> <p>The federal judicial system 47</p> <p>State judicial system 50</p> <p>Local judicial systems 53</p> <p>Judge and Jury: The U.S Jury System 54</p> <p>Order in the court: The bench trial 55</p> <p>Petition to your peers: The jury trial 55</p> <p><b>Chapter 5: The Big Three: Categories of Law</b><b> 57</b></p> <p>Cutting Through the Red Tape: Administrative Law 58</p> <p>Building the bureaucracy: Government agencies 58</p> <p>Playing by the rules: Administrative law practices 59</p> <p>Getting your way: Informal and formal advocacy 61</p> <p>Eliminating Any Reasonable Doubt: The Nature of Criminal Law 63</p> <p>Building blocks: Elements of criminal liability 64</p> <p>High crimes and misdemeanors: Classes of crimes 65</p> <p>Maintaining Polite Society: Civil Law 68</p> <p>The victor’s spoils: Equitable relief and money damages 68</p> <p>Beyond dessert: Tort law 69</p> <p>Sealing and unsealing the deal: Contract law 76</p> <p><b>Chapter 6: Taking a Case to Trial: The Litigation Process</b><b> 79</b></p> <p>Constructing the Criminal Case 79</p> <p>Charging the defendant 79</p> <p>Pushing through criminal pre-trial procedures 82</p> <p>Tackling criminal trial procedure 86</p> <p>Tying loose ends with criminal post-trial procedure 87</p> <p>Carrying Through a Civil Case 89</p> <p>Initiating the civil process 90</p> <p>Proceeding through pre-trial tasks 94</p> <p>Traveling through the trial 97</p> <p>Plodding along in the post-trial 98</p> <p><b>Chapter 7: How it’s Done: Important Rules of Civil Procedure and Evidence</b><b> 101</b></p> <p>Distinguishing Between Procedural Law and Substantive Law 102</p> <p>Following the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure 102</p> <p>Beginning an action: Rule 3 103</p> <p>Serving process: Rule 4 104</p> <p>Figuring out time limits: Rule 6 105</p> <p>Drafting pleadings: Rules 8, 11, and 12 105</p> <p>Uncovering the facts: Rules 26, 27, 30, 33, 36, and 37 107</p> <p>Requesting a summary judgment: Rule 56 110</p> <p>Sticking to State Procedural Rules 111</p> <p>Figuring Out Federal Rules of Evidence 111</p> <p>The main event: General provisions 112</p> <p>What matters: Relevancy 113</p> <p>Something special: Privilege 113</p> <p>All there?: Competency to testify 114</p> <p>Thinking logically: Reasonableness of opinion 115</p> <p>The telephone game: Hearsay 115</p> <p>The real deal: Authenticity and originality 116</p> <p><b>Chapter 8: Because I Said So: The Categories of Legal Authority</b><b> 117</b></p> <p>Déjà Vu All Over Again: Review of Stare Decisis 118</p> <p>Who’s the Boss? The Premises of Primary and Secondary Authority 119</p> <p>First chair: Primary authority 120</p> <p>Second fiddle: Secondary authority 121</p> <p>Applying the Law: Mandatory and Persuasive Authority 121</p> <p>Counting on cases and statues: Mandatory authority 121</p> <p>Getting creative with sources: Persuasive authority 123</p> <p>Helpful But You Can’t Rely On it: Nonauthority 124</p> <p><b>Chapter 9: The Substantive Law Areas Most Commonly Practiced by Paralegals 125</b></p> <p>Facing the Family: Domestic Law and Estate Planning 125</p> <p>Settling the family affair: Domestic law 126</p> <p>Looking to the future: Estate planning 127</p> <p>Building the Boom and Blanketing the Bust: Business and Bankruptcy Law 130</p> <p>Keeping up with capitalism: Business law 131</p> <p>Providing debt relief: Bankruptcy law 132</p> <p>Compensating for Pain and Suffering: Personal Injury and Medical Malpractice 133</p> <p>Placing the blame: Personal injury law 134</p> <p>Questioning the bedside manner: Medical malpractice 135</p> <p>Getting it in Writing: Entertainment and Real Estate Law 137</p> <p>All that glitters: Entertainment law 137</p> <p>Preserving the American dream: Real estate law 138</p> <p>Protecting Assets: Tax and Intellectual Property Law 139</p> <p>Dealing with the IRS: Tax law 140</p> <p>Clarifying the rightful owner: Intellectual property law 141</p> <p><b>Part 3: Putting it Into Practice: The Paralegal in the Civil Litigation Process</b><b> 143</b></p> <p><b>Chapter 10: The Paper Chase: Preparing Documents</b><b> 145</b></p> <p>Communicating in Writing: Types of Legal Documents 145</p> <p>Getting started: Preliminary documents 146</p> <p>Taking it to the judge: Trial and post-trial documents 153</p> <p>Making the Case: Effective Document Drafting 153</p> <p>Commanding attention: Format of a demand letter 154</p> <p>Making your case: The complaint 156</p> <p>Striking back: The answer 160</p> <p>Presenting a formal analysis: The memorandum of law 162</p> <p>Exerting your will: Motions 168</p> <p>Playing detective: Disclosure and discovery 170</p> <p>Handling trial documents 173</p> <p><b>Chapter 11: Elementary My Dear Watson: Legal Investigation</b> <b>175</b></p> <p>Searching for Clues: Gathering Evidence 176</p> <p>What are you trying to prove? Spotting issues 177</p> <p>What order will you follow? Creating checklists 177</p> <p>Who are you going to call? Sources of information 179</p> <p>Keeping Track: Identifying and Protecting Evidence 183</p> <p>Leaving your mark: Identifying evidence 184</p> <p>On guard: Protecting evidence 184</p> <p>Keeping Order: Organizing the Evidence 184</p> <p>Setting a time frame: Chronological organization 185</p> <p>Getting the story straight: Organization by versions 185</p> <p>Noting discrepancies: Organization by inconsistencies 185</p> <p><b>Chapter 12: Chewing the Fat: Legal Interviewing</b><b> 187</b></p> <p>Gauging Whether the Case is Valid: Initial Client Interviews 187</p> <p>Setting the mood 188</p> <p>Directing the content 189</p> <p>Ending the initial interview 194</p> <p>Completing the Story: Witness Interviews 195</p> <p>Preparing Clients and Witnesses for Testimony 197</p> <p><b>Chapter 13: Burning the Midnight Oil: Legal Research</b><b> 199</b></p> <p>Conducting Legal Research 200</p> <p>Searching for applicable law in four easy steps 200</p> <p>Reining in the research process 202</p> <p>Relying On Tools of the Trade 203</p> <p>Establishing a foundation with legal encyclopedias 204</p> <p>Analyzing topics with American Law Reports 205</p> <p>Digging through digests 206</p> <p>Rummaging through reporters 208</p> <p>Keeping current with case citators 208</p> <p>Opting for other resources 211</p> <p>Getting Technological: Computerized Legal Research 212</p> <p>Westlaw 212</p> <p>Lexis Advance 212</p> <p>Bloomberg Law 213</p> <p>The Internet 213</p> <p>Citing Cases Properly: Citation Format 214</p> <p>Citing statutes 215</p> <p>Citing cases 215</p> <p><b>Chapter 14: Where the Rubber Hits the Road: Trial Performance</b><b> 217</b></p> <p>Creating the Ultimate Source of Information: The Trial Notebook 217</p> <p>Selecting the Jury: The Paralegal and Voir Dire 221</p> <p>Rebelling without a cause: Peremptory challenges 223</p> <p>Making a good excuse: Challenges for cause 224</p> <p>Dismissing the kit and caboodle: Challenges to the array 224</p> <p>Monitoring the pool 224</p> <p>Keeping Track of Witnesses 226</p> <p>Weighing Testimony: The Paralegal’s Take on the Jury’s Reaction 227</p> <p>Preparing Questions for the Attorney 228</p> <p>Settling Up: Preparing the Cost Bill 229</p> <p>Blood from a Turnip: Collecting a Difficult Judgment 229</p> <p><b>Chapter 15: The Official Word: Ethical Codes for Legal Professionals</b> <b>231</b></p> <p>Doing What’s Right: The Importance of Ethics 232</p> <p>Defining ethics in the field of law 232</p> <p>Going too far: The unauthorized practice of law 233</p> <p>Following the chain of responsibility 234</p> <p>Abiding by the Rules of Professional Conduct 235</p> <p>Preserving the client-lawyer relationship 236</p> <p>Dealing with others in and out of the law office 238</p> <p>Maintaining the integrity of the profession 240</p> <p>Sorting through the Codes of Paralegal Associations 240</p> <p>Applying the standards of the National Association of Legal Assistants 241</p> <p>Knowing the National Federation of Paralegal Associations code 242</p> <p>Cracking the codes of other organizations 243</p> <p><b>Part 4: Identifying the Skills Paralegals Need to Soar</b><b> 245</b></p> <p><b>Chapter 16: Presenting a Clear, Concise Legal Writing Style</b><b> 247</b></p> <p>Corresponding Carefully 248</p> <p>Letters that impact 248</p> <p>Effortless emails 249</p> <p>Grammar: Grasping the Foundation of an Effective Writing Style 249</p> <p>Identifying the eight parts of speech 249</p> <p>Recognizing the elements of a sentence 254</p> <p>Sentence Structure: Positioning the Sentence’s Elements 257</p> <p>Eliminating wordiness 257</p> <p>Positioning modifiers 259</p> <p>Using active voice 259</p> <p>Employing parallel structure 260</p> <p>Punctuation and Mechanics: Mastering the Rules 260</p> <p>Rules for proper punctuation 260</p> <p>Mastering mechanics 265</p> <p>Organization: Structuring the Finished Product 271</p> <p>The outline 271</p> <p>The paragraph 272</p> <p>Specific documents 272</p> <p>Proofreading: Polishing the Finished Product 273</p> <p>Avoiding Plagiarism 274</p> <p><b>Chapter 17: Using Technology in Law</b><b> 275</b></p> <p>Operating Computer Hardware and Networks in the Law Office 276</p> <p>Getting Savvy on Software Applications for the Law Office 277</p> <p>Sticking with standard office software 277</p> <p>Navigating special software for law firms 280</p> <p>Surfing the Net: Online Resources for Legal Professionals 281</p> <p>Researching the globe 281</p> <p>Meeting over the miles 283</p> <p>Carting Computers into the Courtroom 283</p> <p>Cutting the cords: Wireless technology 284</p> <p>Recognizing the downside of technology 284</p> <p><b>Chapter 18: Law Office Management 101</b><b> 287</b></p> <p>Buying Time: Management Systems 287</p> <p>Marking the days: The calendar system 288</p> <p>Setting the alarm: The tickler system 290</p> <p>Getting it in writing: The to-do list 292</p> <p>Keeping Account: Billing Systems 294</p> <p>Recording time 294</p> <p>Creating invoices 295</p> <p>A Place for Everything: File Management 296</p> <p>Maintaining a filing system 296</p> <p>Organizing documents in a file folder 296</p> <p>Storing old files 297</p> <p><b>Part 5: The Part of Tens</b><b> 299</b></p> <p><b>Chapter 19: The Ten Most Important Rules of Ethics</b><b> 301</b></p> <p>Avoiding the Unauthorized Practice of Law 301</p> <p>Maintaining Client Confidentiality 302</p> <p>Disclosing Your Paralegal Status 302</p> <p>Reporting Ethics Violations of Other Legal Professionals 302</p> <p>Disclosing Information to Prevent Death or Serious Bodily Harm 302</p> <p>Sharing Information with Your Supervising Attorney 303</p> <p>Avoiding Conflicts of Interest 303</p> <p>Obeying All Applicable Attorneys’ Ethics Rules 303</p> <p>Giving Something to the Community: Pro Bono Services 304</p> <p>Making Your Voice Heard: Supporting Efforts to Improve the Legal System 304</p> <p><b>Chapter 20: Ten Things Every Paralegal Should Know</b><b> 305</b></p> <p>How to Ask for Help 305</p> <p>Your Role 306</p> <p>How to Communicate Effectively 306</p> <p>The Value of Being Organized 306</p> <p>Your Limitations 307</p> <p>How to Research 307</p> <p>How to Use Technology 307</p> <p>The Rules of Professional Responsibility 308</p> <p>How to Draft Fundamental Legal Documents 308</p> <p>How to Weigh the Value of Paralegal Organizations 308</p> <p><b>Chapter 21: Ten Survival Tips to Thrive in the Legal Environment</b><b> 309</b></p> <p>Continue Your Education 309</p> <p>Keep a Good Legal Dictionary Nearby 310</p> <p>Maintain the Integrity of Your Profession 310</p> <p>Be Polite and Patient with Court Clerks 310</p> <p>Take a Mind Reading Course 310</p> <p>Enjoy Problem Solving 311</p> <p>Refrain from Badmouthing Other Paralegals and Attorneys 311</p> <p>Never Act as though You’re Irreplaceable 311</p> <p>Don’t Count on a Normal Work Schedule 312</p> <p>Resist the Urge to Gossip about Clients 312</p> <p><b>Part 6: Appendixes </b><b>313</b></p> <p>Appendix A: Glossary of Important Legal Terms: A Mini Legal Dictionary 315</p> <p>Appendix B: What You’ll Find Online 337</p> <p>Index 345</p>
<p><b>Scott and Lisa Hatch</b> are founders of The Center for Legal Studies and developed their award-winning paralegal curriculum in 1980, offering it through 600 colleges nationwide. They continue to instruct legal career and standardized test preparation courses through Hatch Education and College Primers.
<ul> <li>Pick the right area of law for you</li> <li>Jump-start your career as a legal professional</li> <li>Find bonus letters, forms, and templates online</li> </ul> <p><b>Your career as a paralegal starts here</b> <p>The demand for paralegal professionals is exploding, and this book explains in plain English the skills and requirements you need to pursue this rewarding career. Inside, you'll discover the ins and outs of what it's like to be a paralegal, from preparing documents and performing legal research to obtaining certification, hunting for work, and understanding legal concepts. Use this hands-on guide to help in your career considerations, bolster your paralegal training, and be ready for day-to-day tasks. <p><b>Inside...</b> <ul> <li>Discover the job skills required for success as a paralegal</li> <li>Find out important legal concepts you'll need on the job</li> <li>Access forms, templates, and examples on the companion website</li> <li>Develop strategies to manage time and advance your career</li> </ul>

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