Ethics of Paralegal
Essay title: Ethics of Paralegal
PARALEGALS AND THE OBSTACLES THEY FACE: HOW TO CHANGE THE ROLE OF THE PARALEGAL IN THE LAW FIELD.
In todays legal world, the paralegal profession has faced many ethical and professional issues such as: computers, research, billing, confidentiality and professional status. The paralegals play a major role in many attorney offices and are valuable asset. The diverse role of a paralegal in todays society includes many jobs and responsibilities.
Knowledge of research is an important aspect of the paralegal. Paralegals have to be accurate and dependable when it comes to their research productivity. To complete assignments accurately and timely, paralegals must have knowledge of computers, law library and internet. With the understanding of these references, a paralegal will be able to search, write and complete up- to-date law memorandums and briefs for their employers.
The computer is an important tool for todays paralegal. The knowledge of Windows, Excel and Word Perfect will make the paralegal job more efficient. The internet is todays most helpful tool for the paralegal. Westlaw, Lexis, federal and state court materials are the backbone of the new research of tomorrow.
Every paralegal must know how to use a law library effectively. The law library has many references and knowledgeable law librarians to help the paralegal find information.
The ethical dilemma for billing is an issue for paralegal. To be truthful and honest about billing practices is essential to a paralegal and the attorney for whom they work. The billing process reflects the amount of time spent on a clients case.
The billing process can either be a shield or a sword for a paralegal. Billing can be a shield by showing accuracy and time spent on a clients case, however, billing can be a sword when a client is over charged and not comfortable with the bill.
The key to overcoming the dilemma of billing is to stay within the written guidelines of the institution that the paralegal works for, and to be fair and honest.
Professional status is an issue confronting paralegals