How Much Do Paralegals Make?
Paralegals, an integral part of any thriving legal business, ease some of the burden off the attorney’s shoulders by performing a variety of tasks. Paralegals can expect to meet with clients, answer telephone inquiries, perform legal research, deliver documents to the courthouse and draft documents.
If they work in a criminal law firm, they may attend court with the attorney, assisting him or her with handling documents at trial. A paralegal working for a real estate attorney may be expected to perform title searches at the registrar of menses conveyances office.
A paralegal’s salary depends greatly upon the size of the law firm where they are working and the area of the country where they are located. A paralegal working for a large firm in Washington, DC may expect to make more than a paralegal in a small rural law firm. A paralegal with specialized training or experience, such as someone with experience doing title searches, may command a higher salary than someone who has to be trained on-the-job to run title searches.
One area that many paralegals entering the job market fail to consider is looking for employment outside the typical realm of law firm environments. Some private companies, such as software publishers and oil petroleum concerns, are paying some of the highest wages in the industry.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics recently released information regarding typical paralegal salaries. The lowest paid paralegals made $29,460 per year, which equates to an hourly wage of $14.16. This means a weekly wage of $567 pre-tax. This equals a monthly rate of $2455.
How Much Does A Paralegal Make: By The Numbers
The median salary (the salary at which 50% of paralegals earned less than that amount and 50% earned more), was $46,680, making the median salary $22.44 per hour, or $898 per week pre-tax. This equals a monthly rate of $3890.
The highest paid paralegals earned more than $74,870. This means an hourly wage of more than $35.95, which is a weekly wage of more than $1438 pre-tax. This equals a monthly rate of $6,239!
An important factor in the difference: how much education a person has.
When working in a non-traditional setting, such as software publishers? One of the highest-paying areas of employment, although only a small number of paralegals are employed by software publishers, they are being paid a great deal for their work. The yearly wage is $82,090. Average pay for paralegal per hour was, in turn, $39.47.
The range of salaries for paralegals varies greatly and the field is lucrative for individuals just entering the industry. An increased need for legal assistants in the coming years should provide an environment friendly to newly-educated paralegals; increasing demand will cause a rise in paralegal salaries.
As you can see, the answer isn’t exactly written in stone. Salaries vary by region, firm, person, and economic whim. However, further research should give you a pretty good idea of the salary you can expect in your local market, or should be getting paid, based on the scope of work, time on the job, and education or preparation level.
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