Law can be an exciting field to work in. However, becoming an attorney requires many years of education and working your way up the ladder post-graduation. Becoming a paralegal allows you to test the waters and proceed to become a lawyer later on.
Alternatively, it allows you to pursue a career in the field while following other pursuits in your free time.
What Does a Paralegal Do?
Paralegals provide the support required for the function of vital legal processes. As a paralegal, you are retained by attorneys, law offices, corporations, or government agencies to do legal work. Your assignments include preparing and filing legal documents, managing elements of a case, assisting in trial preparation, interviewing clients and witnesses, and other important tasks.
As a paralegal, you are called upon to conduct fact-checking that can prove essential to the outcome of a case. Paralegals that choose to become lawyers in the future are equipped with on-the-job training that will make them stand out.
Average Salary of Paralegals
Paralegals, on average, make $54,500 in the United States. As you’ll notice, when we examine salaries on a state-by-state basis, this can vary significantly.
Average Salary of Paralegals by State
To gain a clear understanding of the average paralegal salary by state, let’s look at some of the amounts on the low and high ends. Arkansas has the lowest average salary for paralegals with just over $42,000. Kansas follows with $43,800 and Mississippi with $44,300.
Connecticut hosts many high-powered attorneys and firms and this is reflected in the average salary for paralegals in the state. The state’s average salary is $62,800, the highest in the US. California follows with $61,240. Washington’s average salary for paralegals is just under $61,000 and Massachusetts is close behind with $60,320.
Close to the national average, Nevada and Delaware have average paralegal salaries in the $57,000 range. Idaho and Kentucky pay paralegals an average of $46,000 a year.
As you can tell, there is about a $20,000 difference in average salary from lowest to highest by state. This may factor into your choice of where you choose to pursue your career as a paralegal.
Maximizing Your Salary as a Paralegal
Other than choosing a state with a high average salary, there are other things you can do to maximize your earnings. As with most occupations, offering greater value to your employer will put you in a position to be rewarded accordingly.
If you choose to do so, you can specialize in a number of fields as a paralegal with trusted platforms like ParalegalEDU.org. This can positively affect your salary, depending on your area of specialization. Fields such as family law, corporate law, intellectual property, and immigration law can place you in demand for your skills and knowledge.
Pursue a Career as a Paralegal
The average salaries listed for paralegals do not limit your income earning potential. Find out more about your potential average paralegal salary and opt for online courses that can put you on a journey of success in the field.