How difficult is it to get paralegal work with no experience?

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objectpermanence
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I have an LLB and LLM from a good university with very good results but I have no experience. No LPC. I have been doing non-legal work for a few years now. While I'm very much out of the loop, after some reflection I still really want to pursue a legal career, specifically in crime and/or immigration. I'm eager to get some paid experience. I'd prefer to work in London.

How hard is it to pick up paralegal work, preferably in those areas, given my circumstances? Is sending CV and a cover letter to solicitors speculatively likely to bear any fruit?

Thank you for replies.
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Delphicyute
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I would suggest taking slightly smaller steps. At the moment, though valuable in its own right, your work experience may be slightly too remote from the work that being a paralegal entails, and so your CV may not necessarily be that attractive for many law firms (though I cannot say that there will not be some who would be willing to employ you). As such, it would be wise to garner some legal work experience to demonstrate your interest in it by volunteering with law centres (if possible) and/or your local Citizen Advice Bureau (more likely), ideally as a gateway assessor or in any capacity. In addition, try and search for any independent pro bono services, there are many for immigration law especially, for instance the reputable BID. Even if you are not able to attain a position that directly involves the provision of any advice, volunteering with them in any capacity could prove useful. Also keep an eye out for any local grassroots community organisations, many of them dabble in the provision of rudimentary legal guidance (I know of quite a few in South East London).

Here is a useful website that is pertinent to your interest in immigration law especially:
http://www.refugeelegalaidinformatio...bono-directory

But if you are intent on looking for any type of temp paralegal work right now, then this website could be of great use to you:
https://flex.legal/
Last edited by Delphicyute; 1 year ago
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objectpermanence
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Thanks for your post.
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James.Carnell
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Mate its hard even with some experience; you need to be creative in how you approach the search and/or very reflective about how you sell your pre-existing experiences.
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ysgytlaeth
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I managed to get paralegal work from when I worked at a phone shop - unknown to me, I was serving a senior partner of a law firm and luckily he asked me to send over my CV and I got a job with his firm. A fluke, probably, but I had a good degree from a good university, and literally zero work experience in law. I think it helps if you have a lot of non-legal work experience on your CV, especially if your previous jobs involved you dealing with customers face-to-face. All I had on my CV was that I had worked in a fast food restaurant for a year and a half, a pub for a few months, a clothes shop for a few months, and a phone shop for 6 months... so anything's possible.
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harrysbar
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(Original post by ysgytlaeth)
I managed to get paralegal work from when I worked at a phone shop - unknown to me, I was serving a senior partner of a law firm and luckily he asked me to send over my CV and I got a job with his firm. A fluke, probably, but I had a good degree from a good university, and literally zero work experience in law. I think it helps if you have a lot of non-legal work experience on your CV, especially if your previous jobs involved you dealing with customers face-to-face. All I had on my CV was that I had worked in a fast food restaurant for a year and a half, a pub for a few months, a clothes shop for a few months, and a phone shop for 6 months... so anything's possible.
And then you woke up
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MidgetFever
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I mean.. firms now tend to specify entry-level paralegal jobs, I'm currently employed as a paralegal though I haven't completed my degree yet.
So.. you could go about it that way, find an entry-level position and work your way up. Should definitely help considering your qualifications.
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AelaNox
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I know you mentioned you'd like some paid experience, but volunteer experience such as Citizens' Advice might help you get started whilst you search for a paralegal role firms will want to know how committed you are to a career in law and having no legal experience may raise some eyebrows. At the very least, some volunteer experience could help.

I had a few immigration cases come my way (although I didn't advise on them myself). Though generally the range of cases that come through are fairly wide. When I was searching, most paralegal roles seemed to be based in London, so there should be a good range of roles
Last edited by AelaNox; 1 year ago
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