How To Have A Respectable Legal Career Without Going To Law School

It is not necessary to go to law school to have a respected legal career.

Many people grow up watching courtroom dramas. They may dream of delivering the winning argument in a big case. Others may want the large salary that quite a few lawyers earn. Reality hits at some point in most lives. It takes a lot of time and money to become a lawyer. Law school is three years long and quite expensive.

For those who still want to work in the law, here are three career paths that one can enter without going to law school.

  • Paralegal

Lawyers cannot handle all the paperwork required of them; nor, can they do all the research needed to win their cases. This work falls upon paralegals. These professionals do almost everything done by lawyers; accept advising clients and arguing in court.

To become a paralegal differs by jurisdiction. It is always best to check with the local government about any changing requirements.

In general, a perspective paralegal only need attend a vocational training program that could take anywhere from a few months to a couple of years. Regardless, this educational requirement is less burdensome than the four years of undergraduate college and three years of law school that lawyers must endure.

  • Court Reporter

Legal records must be official. Court reporters ensure the accuracy of court transcripts and other spoken testimony.

Reporters, also referred to as transcripts, must be able to listen and type at the same time. They must also be able to record speech that is often hard to hear.

Much of the work takes place in the courtroom; however, reporters also spend much time in corporate boardrooms with executives giving depositions. Talk to people like Farrell Court Reporting for more information. 

  • Mediator

There is an increasing emphasis on settling disputes out of court. The financial cost and emotional strain of court proceedings are too much for many to bear.

Yet, America is still a litigious society. How can the country resolve things when someone believes their rights violated? One solution is mediation.

Litigants can visit a mediator, often registered with the state government, and argue their cases. This is not a courtroom. The mediator does not have to stick to the legal code, as does a judge. There is less restraint on how a mediator can decide a case. Thus, they can help both parties in a dispute walk away feeling their side received justice.

Join the Legal Profession

As shown, attending law school is not the only way to join the legal profession. Paralegals, court reporters and mediators are valuable members of the profession. None of these careers requires time in an expensive law school.

Anyone interested in a career in one of these fields should contact a practicing member. For example, calling a court reporting service and asking a reporter about the current entry requirements comes highly recommended.