What Do Paralegals Do? A Day in the Life.
What Do Paralegals Do? A Day in the Life.
While there are many movies and books about lawyers, the work of a paralegal is rarely depicted. Most people do not know how to answer the question, “What does a paralegal do?”
The role of a paralegal here at Brown and Crouppen is an interesting, dynamic one. We know that the work we do is to help our clients during a time when they need it most. Since this is such an important time in our client’s life, it makes our role as your paralegal even more crucial to the success of the claim. While some of the things we do as a paralegal happen on every file, it does not mean that every day is the same. Believe it or not, our responsibilities often vary.
Paralegals tend to value preparation, so most start their day by getting organized. Some of those steps could include:
- Checking what deadlines are upcoming to ensure key actions are completed or followed up on;
- Reading through any emails received since the last time at their desk;
- Listening to any voicemails that might have been left since the last check;
- Checking in with the attorney to see if they have any task that they would need assistance with.
Starting the day this way gives paralegals a blueprint for what to address through the day. Staying as organized as possible will help them stay on task as the remainder of the day unfolds, and hopefully help to make them as productive as possible.
COMMUNICATE, COMMUNICATE, COMMUNICATE
A big part of any paralegal’s day is spent in calls and emails because communication is such a big part of the paralegal’s role. Calls may come from clients wanting to discuss a question about their file, an adjuster who needs a status update for their file or could be the paralegal reaching out to get a treatment update from our client. Perhaps the paralegal needs to email a health insurance company to confirm status of the client’s treatment.
This constant stream of communication is happening every day on every file our firm handles – some of the responses and calls may be from the outline your paralegal makes early in the day; others may come in as the day unfolds. Being in demand for information, whether via phone or email, is a constant for your paralegal.
Another task that will normally appear during a paralegal’s day is reviewing documents. These could be medical bills and records ordered for a client’s file, a police report received on a new file, correspondence from insurers, etc. Paralegals gather as much information as possible about our client’s claim and treatment, which means looking through records to know about diagnoses and care, reviewing police reports to know who was involved for further investigation, and giving insurers what they need to work the claim forward. The amount of information received by your paralegal can be vast and vary by day, but make no mistake, that at some point in their daily activities, your paralegal is reviewing some amount of documentation.
Part and parcel with the review of documents is also taking the time to prepare some paperwork and documents of our own. As your file progresses through the process, it will be necessary to send notice letters, requests, status updates, demand letters, etc. Your paralegal is normally involved in the drafting of these correspondences before the attorney reviews them to send out.
WHAT DO PARALEGALS DO? A LITTLE BIT OF EVERYTHING
While the basic daily tasks may seem rather mundane, your paralegal can assure you that no day is like the one before it. Our clients are diverse, and their claims are every bit as different as they are. Because these claims and clients are dissimilar, every day working on behalf of those clients can be a new situation.
Managing the flow of information, no matter in what form or to/from whom, is a key responsibility for your paralegal. Taking the time to organize and process the information received is also a vital task for your paralegal to conquer. This information is used to prepare the claim, and necessary to serve as the most zealous advocate for our clients possible.
Some may believe that a paralegal does little more than answer calls and collect reports, but the role of a paralegal is so much more than that. By anticipating needs, staying organized, communicating as frequently as possible, thoroughly reviewing information, and thoughtfully preparing documents, paralegals show care and concern for you, the client. They help provide top tier representation for your case.
If you’d like to benefit from the many skills of a highly professional group of paralegals, contact us today for a free consultation.