Should I become a paralegal before going to law school?

(Please Ask Questions and Answer Questions)
Lawgiver1981
Posts: 6
Joined: Thu Nov 02, 2017 11:49 pm

Should I become a paralegal before going to law school?

Postby Lawgiver1981 » Wed Nov 22, 2017 4:41 pm

Hi
I’ve wondered if becoming a paralegal will help my chances of getting into law school?

Would it make a difference if I just ended up a paralegal anyway after the JD?

cavalier1138
Posts: 4667
Joined: Fri Mar 25, 2016 8:01 pm

Re: Should I become a paralegal before going to law school?

Postby cavalier1138 » Wed Nov 22, 2017 5:03 pm

No. And why would you go to a law school where you were likely to end up as a paralegal after graduation?

User avatar
nealric
Posts: 2653
Joined: Fri Sep 25, 2009 9:53 am

Re: Should I become a paralegal before going to law school?

Postby nealric » Thu Nov 30, 2017 2:16 pm

It's not a bad idea to spend some time working in a law office before law school so you can understand what you are getting into. But I wouldn't undertake any formal paralegal training.

User avatar
Cogburn1984
Posts: 35
Joined: Tue Sep 13, 2016 3:00 pm

Re: Should I become a paralegal before going to law school?

Postby Cogburn1984 » Thu Nov 30, 2017 2:48 pm

It's probably not going to help you get into law schools, but it might help you while applying to jobs in law school.

Also, it'll give you an opportunity to speak with actual lawyers and learn more about actual law practice, which could be a strong basis for any Why Law? questions during your cycle. Which will help you appear more polished.

Essentially there are a few ancillary benefits, but it's not getting you in anywhere that your numbers won't already.

User avatar
airwrecka
Posts: 1117
Joined: Mon Oct 24, 2016 1:54 pm

Re: Should I become a paralegal before going to law school?

Postby airwrecka » Thu Nov 30, 2017 7:33 pm

Speaking as someone who worked as a paralegal for ~2 years prior to law school:

I don't think it will help your chances of getting into LS (as others have already said). However, I have noticed that my experience as a paralegal has really helped me during my first semester of 1L just by the fact that I'm familiar with a lot of legal terminology, the way the legal system works, the nature of litigation, etc. However, legal practice can vary widely, and with it, paralegal experiences. I think I got a lot of good experience because I worked in a very small litigation-focused firm where the attorneys were super willing to explain things to me and help me understand them (they knew I was planning to go to law school), and they gave me opportunities to do legal research and draft pleadings and memos and such. Moreover, as others have also said, being a paralegal will give you a better understanding of what being a lawyer looks like (assuming you actually work directly with attorneys) and whether or not it's the right path for you.

On the other hand, sometimes I wish I had spent the two years prior to law school doing something entirely non-legal related since now my whole life revolves around the law. It might have been fun to do something else for a while.

trkmaniak00
Posts: 65
Joined: Sun Jan 24, 2016 1:18 pm

Re: Should I become a paralegal before going to law school?

Postby trkmaniak00 » Thu Nov 30, 2017 8:42 pm

Going to echo the above. I agreed to a two year commitment as a paralegal which is common. After about two weeks I understood what legal work looked like and knew I wanted to move forward with this as a career path. Since I could tell so early on it’s hard to feel like this time hasn’t been a waste. I could’ve done something unrelated that I was interested in or just moved on to law school quicker.

Edit: but at least I know defimitively about law school which my kjd self did not.




Return to “Law School FAQ”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests