Legal assistants or paralegals work in a support role within an attorney’s office. They may also wok in law firms, legal departments of corporate firms and government offices. They are responsible for preparing legal documents, maintaining schedules, filing and records activities and managing research work.
People seeking job as legal assistants need to hold at least an associate’s degree from a paralegal college which qualifies them for the position. When applying for a job in this capacity, legal assistants should be able to provide the employer with a well written resume and cover letter. Once these things are in order and an interview is bagged, the candidate may need to prepare for the interview.
Here are a few examples of interview questions that an employer may ask along with their potential answers.
Legal Assistant Interview Questions and Answers
Why should we hire you for this job?
I am a dedicated paralegal professional with law education and ample experience in the field. I posses all the core competencies needed for the routine legal assistance tasks and am proficient in legal research and report writing as well.
Why did you leave your last job?
I enjoyed my job a lot and it provided me with great opportunities to learn. However it was limited to family law and I wanted to broaden my horizons in the law field.
Do you have any experience in dealing with confidential information? If yes, how well did you manage it?
Being a trained legal assistant I fully understand the importance of confidentiality in legal proceedings and know that even the minor details of any case should be kept confidential. I have always maintained case confidentiality during my work experience and my previous employer can testify the same.
What are the main components of a case file and what steps are carried out to file a case?
Case filing is an intricate task, it involves case summarizing, material collection and organization, law research, witness scheduling and team case review reports.
What areas of law are you most interested in?
My main interest lies in the forensic field however I am open to all fields
What are the key skills you possess that you believe qualify you as a legal assistant?
My skills, training and experience in client litigation, law research, legal administration skills and expertise in maintaining functional client relationships render me a suitable candidate for the position
What do you deem the most important skills for a person working as a legal assistant?
Legal assistants need to be very organized and possess excellent research skills. Since they work with paperwork a lot, their communication skills and the ability to maintain confidential information need to be above par.
How do you manage your research work considering there is so much to look through?
I have been trained to first comprehend the topic I am researching and to then look for resources. I am familiar with most legal books that hold pertinent information and have the knowledge of how to look through them for precedents and information.
Tell us about a time you had to handle a difficult client.
There was an instance when a client we figured to be lying wanted to make us believe otherwise. It was a sensitive case and we couldn’t be too careful. He would come in to the office and threaten us when the office refused to take his case. He almost made it into a hostage situation when he tried abducting one of the secretaries. I took over the situation and calmly convinced him to leave.
How do you check your work for accuracy?
I am an individual with high attention to detail. I check and recheck my work continuously and make sure that there are no errors.
Why should we consider you to be the right person for this job?
I am confident that I possess the legal educational background, the experience and the skills that this job demands. I believe I am much above in these areas as far as other contenders for this job is concerned as I possess excellent research skills along with a profound ability to work in a fast paced environment.