Paralegals may work for a private law firm or a legal department in a corporation. The nature of paralegal work in a law firm is different to that of corporation. Private sector paralegals in law firms represent clients from outside the organization. Law firm clients come from the public.
They may be private individuals or individuals seeking legal services on behalf of a business or corporation. Paralegals that work for legal departments in private sector corporations represent clients from within the corporate organization. The interests paralegals represent in either case are different with regard to interests.
Paralegals working for private sector law firms represent clients that are in trouble with the law. Paralegals help research legal information with regard to active legal action. Generally, paralegals who work for law firms help their clients after the fact. Private sector legal departments in for profit corporations interpret the law in a preventative manner. Paralegals research legal information on behalf of corporate interests, not through a third party like a law firm.
Their loyalties are to the corporation, which may push attorneys and paralegals working in the private sector to push the law to its limits. Those limits may be pushed without regard to the greater good. However, it is not the duty of the paralegal to pass judgement, they must help attorneys in both administrative and research capacities, without regard to conscience. This may be a pertinent fact to consider when deciding which aspect of the private sector a paralegal wishes to serve.
Corporate paralegals conduct legal research with respect to corporate expansion either domestically or internationally. Corporate attorneys research regulations to keep companies out of trouble. The nature of the work is not strictly of a legal manner in this respect.
The researched information is then relayed to the attorney so that he or she could better advise the corporate client. The research expertise also varies much more in the employ of a corporation’s legal department.
Law firm paralegals conduct legal research to serve clients that are already in trouble. Law firms may also provide legal advice in a preventative manner but this is generally limited to a given field of law. For example, a paralegal working in collaboration with a law firm that exclusively specializes in personal injury law would only do research on personal injury law.
This means that an experienced paralegal will have to spend less time conducting research and have written legal reportsSalaries for paralegals within these two parts of the private sectors are not much different. Corporate paralegals make slightly more than law firm paralegals. Law firm paralegals’ salaries depend on the size of the law firm for which he or she works. Corporate paralegals’ salaries vary less because most corporations with its own legal departments are large multi-national corporations.