The 6 Best Things About Becoming A Paralegal
One of the fastest growing and in-demand professions in Ontario is the paralegal profession.
In Ontario, paralegal studies are a regulated job. This means that there are stricter educational and professional standards that must be met during paralegal courses in Toronto in order to receive the appropriate qualification. This also means that, unlike every other province in Canada, paralegals in Ontario are actually able to practice some elements of the law independently of a lawyer.
So what are the best things about becoming a paralegal?
While there are hundreds of different reasons becoming a paralegal is a smart career move, we have put together six of our favourite reasons. Read on to find out more!
Get Into The Workforce Fast
One of the biggest benefits of taking a paralegal course in Toronto is that you can get into the workforce a lot faster.
Becoming a lawyer in Canada requires completing a four year pre-law Bachelor’s degree, pass the LSAT exam, complete an additional three-year law school program, sit and pass the bar exam in your province, and register with the government as a practicing lawyer. All in all, most students take on average eight years to become licensed, practicing lawyers.
Conversely, becoming a paralegal is a much faster process. While there are different levels of paralegal courses in Toronto available, ranging from certificate to degree, the longest study time is generally four years. Paralegal diplomas and certificates generally take between one to two years, meaning you could be out in the workforce eight times faster than if you became a lawyer.
Learn About Legal Professions
Becoming a paralegal also allows you to learn more about other legal professions.
A secondary benefit for not having spent almost a decade in school becoming a lawyer, becoming a paralegal allows you to dip your toe into the legal waters to see if it actually appeals to you long term. As you haven’t just spent eight years studying to become something you might ultimately not enjoy, the cost of opportunity is a lot lower when studying to become a paralegal.
This means that, should you become a paralegal and find that it is not for you, you won’t have just spent almost a decade studying to get into a career you’re not going to stick with. Paralegals allow you to get a taste of the industry without committing thousands of hours and dollars off the bat.
Get Real-World Experience
Many paralegal courses in Toronto also give you the opportunity to get real-world experience in the legal industry.
A requirement for graduation in Ontario to become a paralegal is spending a minimum amount of time placed in a real-world legal scenario. This can include a government office, law firm, private practice, or another legal department. Having an opportunity to get some experience for what a career in the law industry might be light before you have even graduated is an invaluable tool in determining what is right for you.
Make Professional Connections
Becoming a paralegal enables you to make important and powerful connections in the legal industry.
As part of your paralegal course in Toronto, you will need to perform a 120-hour placement in a real-world legal situation. This will give you the opportunity to meet fellow legal professionals, make introductions and connections, and potentially secure an attractive position further down the line.
If you make a good enough impression during your placement, you will be well positioned to leap at any job openings they might have once you graduate. Even if you do not end up pursuing a paralegal career forever, it is always good to know people in different industries who you can turn to during different points in your professional life.
Change Career Paths
The final reason that becoming a paralegal is great is that it allows you to have a career path change, even if you are later into your professional life.
Due to the relatively low barriers to entry for a paralegal diploma, more people are able to change their careers by taking the appropriate paralegal course in Toronto. Paralegal studies is a great option for students from all walks of life that are looking for a professional change into an exciting and in-demand career.
Are you ready to take the next step in your professional life and become a paralegal? Cestar College offers a holistic paralegal program, focusing on real-world skills and deep understanding of the law. Our 120-hour internship placement program gives students hands-on experience while they complete their studies. Contact us today and find out how you can change your future tomorrow.