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Apply important legal concepts and skills you need to succeed
Get educated, land a job, and start making money now!
Want a new career as a paralegal but don't know where to start? Relax! Paralegal Career For Dummies is the practical, hands-on guide to all the basics from getting certified to landing a job and getting ahead. Inside, you'll find all the tools you need to succeed, including a CD packed with sample memos, forms, letters, and more!
Discover how to
• Secure your ideal paralegal position
• Pick the right area of the law for you
• Prepare documents for litigation
• Conduct legal research
• Manage a typical law office
Sample resumes, letters, forms, legal documents, and links to online legal resources.
Please see the CD-ROM appendix for details and complete system requirements.
About the Author
Scott Hatch, JD, and Lisa Zimmer Hatch, MA, are founders and administrators of The Center for Legal Studies, which offers training and certificate courses, including paralegal certificate courses, to thousands of people through hundreds of colleges and universities every year.
Table of Contents
Part I: A Snapshot of the Exciting and Lucrative Paralegal Profession 7
Chapter 1: Discovering the Paralegal Profession 9
Chapter 2: Membership Has Its Privileges: Paralegal Associations and Their Certification Exams 21
Chapter 3: The Hunt Is On: Securing a Paralegal Position 27
Part II: Important Legal Concepts Every Paralegal Should Know 37
Chapter 4: “All Rise”: The American Judicial System 39
Chapter 5: The Big Three: Categories of Law 57
Chapter 6: Taking a Case to Trial: The Litigation Process 79
Chapter 7: How It’s Done: Important Rules of Civil Procedure and Evidence 99
Chapter 8: Because I Said So: The Categories of Legal Authority 115
Chapter 9: The Substantive Law Areas Most Commonly Practiced by Paralegals 123
Part III: Putting It into Practice: The Paralegal in the Civil Litigation Process 137
Chapter 10: The Paper Chase: Preparing Documents 139
Chapter 11: Elementary My Dear Watson: Legal Investigation 167
Chapter 12: Chewing the Fat: Legal Interviewing 179
Chapter 13: Burning the Midnight Oil: Legal Research 193
Chapter 14: Where the Rubber Hits the Road: Trial Performance 211
Chapter 15: The Official Word: Ethical Codes for Legal Professionals 225
Part IV: Skills Paralegals Need to Soar Ahead 239
Chapter 16: Write On: Presenting a Clear, Concise Legal Writing Style 241
Chapter 17: The Latest Thing: Using Technology in Law 269
Chapter 18: Law Office Management 101 281
Part V: The Part of Tens 293
Chapter 19: The Ten Most Important Rules of Ethics 295
Chapter 20: Ten Things Every Paralegal Should Know 299
Chapter 21: Ten Survival Tips to Thrive in the Legal Environment 303
Part VI: Appendixes 307
Appendix A: Glossary of Important Legal Terms: A Mini Legal Dictionary 309
Appendix B: About the CD 335
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
The recent release of Paralegal Career for Dummies by Wiley Publishing has saved my private practice a significant amount of time that I had been devoting over the last 30 years to training my neophyte legal secretary and paralegal office staff in the critical areas of ethics, document preparation, legal research, and legal writing. My private law practice outside of my professorship has suddenly, and perceptively, been made more efficient when the authors of the nationally renowned Paralegal Certificate Course© placed their knowledge and techniques into text format. The essential legal career skills set forth in Paralegal Career for Dummies obviate my need to provide extensive background training to my new staff employees whether I am recruiting from the medical or legal professions. An integral part of the training of the legal assistants who are hired to work in my private practice consists of detailed comprehension tests from the textbook covering the substantive material that most directly pertains to areas of my particular law practice. Beginning with its introduction to the American Judicial System (¿Because I Said So¿), through litigation skills and strategies for the paralegal (¿The Paper Waste¿), I do not have to ¿Burn the Midnight Oil¿ conducting seemingly endless hours of legal research since this book teaches and trains my staff in the nitty gritty practical skills that Yale Law School did not always provide me. I highly recommend this book to practitioners and their legal staff, and I am confident that it will save a significant amount of time and money by making the practice of law more efficient and accessible to all.
This book is a must for anyone considering or beginning a career in Paralegalism. It is written in plain language to simplify the decision. I greatly enjoyed reading this very informative book and highly recommend it.
HOW DO I GET THE CD THAT COMES WITH THE BOOK
Barnes and Noble uses the stock description of this book and does not take the time to remove the reference to the included CD . THERE IS NO CD PEOPLE. I tried hokding my breath but that doesnt work either.
the description and the book itself indicate that I am entitled to a CD Rom-- how do I get it?>