Paralegal Resume Examples + Expert Writing Guide

Elizabeth Muenzen
By Elizabeth Muenzen, Career Advice Expert
Last Updated: January 03, 2024
  • 30% higher chance of getting a job‡
  • 42% higher response rate from recruiters‡

Our customers have been hired at:*Foot Note

A paralegal is a legal professional who works under the supervision of a lawyer and helps in various legal tasks. Paralegals work in a variety of settings, including law firms, corporate legal departments, government agencies and non-profit organizations. They play a vital role in supporting attorneys and helping clients navigate legal processes.

To land a job as a paralegal, you’ll need a compelling resume that showcases your skills and qualifications. Take a look at our professionally made paralegal resume examples and expert writing tips to craft a standout resume in minutes.

Entry Level Paralegal Resume Example Customize this resume

Start by editing the paralegal resume samples from this page, or browse our selection of 40+ resume templates to find one that catches your eye.

Paralegal resume example (text version)

SELINA ADKINS

City, State, Zip Code
000-000-0000
email@email.com

PROFESSIONAL SUMMARY

Efficient and inquisitive legal assistant pursuing position as paralegal. Will capitalize on in-depth research experience, and ability to comprehend multifaceted legal structures and situations. Ready to take on a role that will greatly expand knowledge of law.

SUMMARY OF QUALIFICATION

  • Capable of grasping legal minutia while performing thorough research and essential administrative work.
  • Answer calls, emails, written letters; oversee firm’s schedules.
  • Clear, concise, bilingual communicator.

SKILLS

  • Proficient in MS Office
  • Litigation support
  • Court transcription
  • Legal Research
  • Exceptional writer
  • Negotiation
  • Document filing

PROFESSIONAL SKILLS

Organization:

  • Create, update, and manage schedules for self and three firm partners.
  • Keep workspace tidy, organized and accessible to coworkers.
  • Closely adhere to and enforce filing system.

Research:

  • Navigate and search through four distinct legal databases.
  • Provide lawyers with essential background information across many cases.
  • Provided Alliant executives with detailed reports on competitors and wider industry.

Comprehension:

  • Can grasp complex legal topics in abstract if not in totality.
  • Served as sole liaison between multiple parties across ten cases; all information was succinctly, clearly relayed and never overly simplified.

WORK HISTORY

Paralegal 03/2018 to Current
Branch Metrics Inc. – Company Name, City, State

Legal Assistant 04/2013 to 06/2016
Toro, lero, & Way LLP – Company Name, City, State

Admissions Assistant 01/2011 to 06/2012
Alliant Systems – Company Name, City, State

5 essentials of a standout paralegal resume

  1. Contact details

    Add your contact information to the top of your paralegal resume. Include your full name, city, state, ZIP code, phone number and professional email address. Add your LinkedIn profile and professional website, if applicable. Reference our guide on how to write a resume for more advice on creating your contact details section.

  2. Professional summary

    Your professional summary is where you introduce yourself to the hiring manager and highlight your top qualifications in three to five sentences. 

    Your paralegal resume summary should showcase relevant skills. Include one or two notable professional accomplishments and touch on how long you’ve been in the industry. 

    Here is an example professional summary for a paralegal resume: 

    “Dedicated and detail-oriented paralegal with over five years of experience supporting attorneys in a variety of legal practice areas. Skilled in conducting legal research, drafting legal documents and managing case files. Proficient in using legal software, such as Westlaw and LexisNexis, to gather information and support case preparation. Strong communication and organizational skills, with a proven ability to work independently and as part of a team to meet tight deadlines.”

    For an entry-level paralegal resume, we recommend including a paralegal resume objective instead of a professional summary. For additional guidance, take a look at our guide on how to make a resume with no experience

  3. Skills

    List your top paralegal resume skills using bullet points to let hiring managers know what you bring to the table. An impressive resume will showcase a mixture of hard skills and soft skills

    Here are a few examples of paralegal skills for your resume: 

    • Legal research: Ability to conduct legal research using various sources, including online databases, case law and statutes.
    • Drafting and reviewing legal documents: Experience in drafting and reviewing legal documents, such as contracts, pleadings and briefs.
    • Case management: Strong organizational skills and ability to manage case files, including tracking deadlines, maintaining calendars and organizing documents.

    Remember to note your interpersonal skills, which help you communicate effectively with your colleagues. You can also take a look at paralegal job descriptions for resume skills that are relevant to your target role. 

  4. Work history

    Your resume needs a clear work history section that starts with your present or most recent job and lists your remaining work experience in reverse-chronological order. 

    Remember to mention the job title, employer’s name, company location and the duration of your employment. Use bullet points to showcase your accomplishments and quantifiable achievements for each role. 

    Here are a few examples of work history bullet points to include on a paralegal resume: 

    • Conducted legal research and analysis of laws, regulations and judicial decisions.
    • Prepared legal documents, such as contracts, pleadings and briefs.
    • Organized and maintained legal files and documents, including electronic databases.
    • Assisted attorneys in preparing for trials, hearings and corporate meetings by reviewing documents, preparing exhibits and organizing evidence.

    Read our guide on including work experience on your resume and reference our paralegal sample resumes for additional tips from career experts.

  5. Education

    List your educational background starting with the most recent degree and working backward. Include the name of the schools and the year of graduation. If you did not attend college, provide information about your high school and any relevant courses you have taken since graduating.

    The educational requirements for a paralegal may vary depending on the employer and the jurisdiction, but in general, a paralegal needs to have a post-secondary education in the form of a certificate, diploma or degree in paralegal studies or a related field. 

    In addition to formal education, paralegals may also receive on-the-job training or continuing education to stay up-to-date with changes in the law and legal procedures.

See why My Perfect Resume is a 5-star resume builder

Pair your resume with a matching cover letter

Do’s and don’ts for your paralegal resume

  • Use measurable achievements to describe your experience. 
  • Use strong action verbs to describe your work experiences, such as “drafted,” “assisted” and “processed.”
  • Tailor your resume to the paralegal job you are applying for.
  • Use keywords from the job description throughout your paralegal resume. For example, “scheduling appointments” and “conducting research.”
  • Format your paralegal resume with clear sections and appropriate fonts so that it is easy for ATS software to parse and hiring managers to read.
  • Don’t lie about your experience and skills as a paralegal. 
  • Don’t make vague claims about your skills. Instead, provide specific examples of your ability to analyze complex legal issues and work collaboratively with attorneys. 
  • Don’t include irrelevant personal information such as your ethnicity and age.
  • Don’t include irrelevant skills and work experience. Focus on relevant skills instead such as proficiency in using legal software, such as Westlaw, LexisNexis and Microsoft Office.
  • Don’t forget to proofread. A paralegal is expected to have high attention to detail, and your resume should reflect that.

Top 4 tips for interviews for a paralegal job

  1. Learn about the law firm.

    When applying for a paralegal role, it’s important to learn about the organization to demonstrate your interest in the position and to tailor your resume to the company’s needs. Here are a few areas to consider researching:

    • Areas of practice: Look at the firm’s website and review its areas of practice. This will give you an idea of the types of cases and clients the firm handles. You should also research the specific practice areas you are interested in and become familiar with the relevant legal terminology and procedures.
    • Firm size: Law firms vary in size, from small boutique firms to large multinational firms. Consider the size of the firm and how it might impact the work environment and the types of cases you would be working on.
    • Firm culture: Try to get a sense of the firm’s culture and values by reading the website, reviews and news articles. Look for information on the firm’s work-life balance, diversity and inclusion policies, and professional development opportunities.
    • Reputation: Research the firm’s reputation in the legal community and among clients. Look for information on the firm’s track record of success, awards and recognitions, and any notable cases or clients.

    By researching the law firm and understanding its areas of practice, culture and reputation you can tailor your application and demonstrate your knowledge and interest in the firm’s work.

  2. Practice your answers.

    It is important to prepare for your job interview by practicing commonly asked questions. Here are a few behavioral questions to prepare for:  

    During your interview, you will be asked a variety of questions to assess your knowledge, skills and experience as a paralegal. Here are some common questions that you might encounter:

    • What experience do you have working on legal cases?
    • How do you manage competing priorities and deadlines?
    • What do you know about our law firm and our areas of practice?
  3. Prepare questions to ask during the interview.

    Prepare for the interview process by brainstorming informed questions that you can ask. This will help you showcase your interest in the company’s mission and values.

    Here are a few questions you can ask the interviewer to demonstrate your interest:

    • What is the culture like at the firm?
    • How does the firm measure success for paralegals?
    • What is the firm’s policy on professional development? 
    • What type of cases will I be working on?
  4. Gather references.

    Gather your professional references to share with the hiring manager if requested. Make a list of two or three former colleagues and a former manager willing to speak highly about your abilities and performance as a paralegal.

How we reviewed this article

Since 2013, we have helped more than 15 million job seekers. We want to make your career journey accessible and manageable through our services and Career Center’s how-to guides and tips. In our commitment to bring you a transparent process, we present our Editorial Process.

Sources

Rate this article

Paralegal Resume Example

Average Rating

4.5/5 stars with 176 reviews