Legal secretary courses are the first step to becoming a qualified, professional legal secretary and many training providers claim to offer a programme in this area.
The challenge for potential students is how to choose from the plethora of opportunities available. How do you identify the courses that will deliver real career value and will be highly regarded by employers?
One of the first areas to examine is the content of the courses.
For example, some course providers concentrate on the academic side, offering an overview of case law. But this can be problematical if you’re looking for legal secretary work because secretaries aren’t required to offer legal advice.
It is more important for them to know which legal forms apply to the type of work being handled by their bosses, how to lay out letters correctly as well as touch typing quickly and accurately.
In short, the secretarial side of the job linked with knowledge of the specific legal administrative services needed to run the business are usually more important.
This is often where graduates come unstuck.
Many who have a law degree from university correctly believe that becoming a legal secretary is a good route into the profession.
A degree or certificate is useful, as it shows interest, but it has little practical application in terms of secretarial or paralegal skills and most people will have to go back to basics and take legal secretary courses in order to win a job offer and start a career.
For example, a secretary working in company registration will need to know which legal documents to complete for the issue of shares, change of directors, end of year accounting reports etc as well how to use the technology specific to a legal office. Add to this the typing, audio transcription and computer skills you need to get a job offer and it is evident how important legal secretary courses are.
Recognition & Respect.
Another consideration when choosing where to do your studies is how well respected your qualification will be.
Two important names offering certificate programmes and diploma studies are Pitman Training, with a training centre near most UK towns and particularly well respected institution in London (High Holborn or Notting Hill) and Manchester, and ILEX.
Pitman Training offers legal secretary courses which students can start at any time and flexible study times including evenings and Saturdays, while ILEX takes the more traditional route of classroom education like a college.
Your choice of educational provider will depend on how quickly you want to graduate and on the type of learning you prefer and it is worth spending time investigating, in much the same way as a paralegal would do legal research – lots of reading, searching the web and especially visiting the schools that meet your requirements before you enrol.
Building A Career.
Secretaries in law firms are held in great esteem and many command high salaries, so it is no surprise that such high achievers develop personal career plans that would not be available to those in other fields.
As already mentioned, some become paralegals or take their articles to become solicitors, while others move higher up the administrative track and become Executive PA’s to associates and partners.
Looking To The Future.
In our increasingly litigious society, the need for legal services can only increase and that means demand for specialised secretaries will increase with it.
That’s why the future looks bright for anyone prepared to invest in legal secretary courses to start a career in this area. Training is critical to getting a foot on the career ladder.
Other Legal Secretary Course Articles:
-Tips to Find Secretarial Courses to Suit Your Needs
-Secretary Courses – Backbone of Professional Secretarial Career
-Study a Secretary Course Even While You Work
-Use a Recognized Provider for Your Secretarial Course Training