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5 Common Paralegal interview questions. To become a paralegal, as is with any other job, you will need to go through a rigorous process of preparation. From preparing to start your paralegal course in other to take the Paralegal Licensing Exam, down to the moment you register with a Paralegal society.
If you are preparing to start your career as a paralegal. The moment of truth comes when you have your first interview for the job.
5 Common paralegal interview questions
Being new to this, we saw it fit to try and prepare you for the interview. The following are the most commonly asked questions in a paralegal interview:
1. Why do you want to be a paralegal?
This question is designed to help your employers understand what motivates you; what is it about being a paralegal that drives you? Use this opportunity to the potential employer how passionate you are about your choice of career; show them what initially sparked your interest in becoming a paralegal.
If you have any previous jobs that brought you to where you are today, wanting to become a paralegal, talk about them so they can understand your journey.
2. How would you define your legal research skills?
Legal research is a big part of being a paralegal. You are entrusted with conducting all the research needed in a case, presenting all possible options, and recommending what is best as well as unearthing anything that could be brought forward against your case.
As such, your research skills need to be at the top level. You have to be familiar with the legal process and know where and how best to find reliable information. Take this opportunity to highlight any software that you have experience using and any others that you know of and would love to learn to use.
3. What level of experience do you have?
Experience is always invaluable in any job. It gives the employer confidence that they will not need to train you from scratch. It also shows that you bring some value into the company as the experience is different with every job you have. Let’s clarify something here; experience need not be gained from working previously as a paralegal.
It could be experience gained during your internship, from the training you gained while studying, and so on. What the employer needs to know is that you have knowledge of procedures and processes followed in legal matters, that you are familiar with legal documents, process serving, and so on. This question also tests your interpersonal skills like leadership, ability to communicate clearly in a written and verbal form as well as your ability to solve problems.
4. How organized are you?
This question is concerning your ability to check the accuracy of your work; details of cases quoted, your sources, the dates, and so on. Lawyers rely heavily on the accuracy of information to build a strong case. Paralegals are generally tasked with finding this information and putting it together. The lawyer might not have time to comb through what you have prepared. It is therefore paramount that you can organize and verify all the information that you present.
Besides precision in research, you also need to be precise while drafting documents, filing, and contacting clients especially, through email; you can email the wrong client detailing information about a different client’s case. Clients’ details are confidential. Sending a client information and case details of another client is punishable by law. Show your understanding and prowess in being organized and accurate.
5. Why should we hire you?
This is your moment to shine! Whatever extra quality you possess that you believe would give you extra credit in this job, this is the time to bring it to the table. It could be as complex as years of experience or as simple as being zealous about being a paralegal; whatever it may be, bring it to the table and plead your case!
Any interview session can be stressful. You need to prepare in advance and believe that you have what it takes to get this job. The above 5 common paralegal interview questions will work well to help you prepare; have a few answers ready in your mind just in case these common questions are asked. For more information on paralegal services, click here.