General Question

guitarhero1983's avatar

What happens to paralegals who do not go to law or graduate school?

Asked by guitarhero1983 (135points) March 30th, 2010

I’ve been working in a law firm as a paralegal since college for 2.5 years now, but have decided I don’t want to go to law school (for many, many reasons). I’ve been thinking perhaps I will continue as a paralegal, but I’m wondering what other types of jobs or careers I could transition into, and educational programs I might look into. I’m 26 and would like to create a more structured plan for the next 5 years, now that I’ve decided not to go to law school.

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11 Answers

guitarhero1983's avatar

@kevbo Was just reading that, gah.

Okay but seriously what do I do.

RealEyesRealizeRealLies's avatar

I assume paralegals do a great deal of historical research for lawyers? If this is correct, then a career in trend reporting or marketing research may be right up your alley.

kevbo's avatar

Corporate compliance, risk management and contracting come to mind. All were departments at the healthcare org I used to work for. It’s difficult to answer without understanding what your likes and dislikes are relative to your job.

Judi's avatar

Commercial Property Management uses a lot if the same skills. Deals with a lot of contracts, but also gets you outside looking at roofs, parking lots, managing remodels and coordinating vendors. 2 days are rarely the same.

bobloblaw's avatar

I’m curious to know: what prompted you to decide not to go to law school? What made you want to go to law school? I ask b/c I’m the same age as you. I’m also at the end of that whole process: I just took the CalBar in February 2010.

I’m not sure how much of a huge shift you’re looking for. Do you want to enter a completely different industry/context? Going back to school may be the way to go. Otherwise, as the others have said, you’ll be doing a lot of office-oriented jobs.

davidbetterman's avatar

I know how you feel. I did the paralegal thing back in the early 80’s. I decided a career in the legal profession would be a huge error.

Librarian (at a law library).

The_Idler's avatar

Legal secretary.

guitarhero1983's avatar

@The_Idler That’s pretty much a step down from what I’m doing now, and in the same context.

The_Idler's avatar

Maybe it’s different in the UK, sorry.

They are paid very well here.
They aren’t just admin staff, nor interns; many are specialised to the point of being semi-professional.

guitarhero1983's avatar

Does anyone know anything about quality control/quality assurance careers? I read a comment from @kevbo‘s link above that offers this as a potential career path, and it sounds very interesting, particularly since there appear to be numerous international opportunities. A few Google searches have not, however, yielded many results. Does anyone know anything about this?

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