The Exclusive Newsletter for the Paralegal Community.

The Legaco Express for Paralegals Blog and Blog Roll

The best of paralegal blogging in one place.

Interview with Author Charlsye Smith Diaz, PhD

The Legaco Express for Paralegals (LEX):

1. As the coordinator for Technical and Professional Writing at the University of Maine, what do you recommend to paralegals do to improve their writing skills?

Charlsye Smith Diaz:

Paralegals tend to be very good writers, but sometimes working alongside attorneys who had worked for three years in law school to sharpen their own writing skills can be intimidating.

Blog: No, I Can’t Give Legal Advice!

I love my friends, don’t get me wrong, and my best friend, well, there is nothing I wouldn’t do for her. Okay, maybe there are a couple of things I wouldn’t do, like give legal advice or put out a hit, but other than that, I can’t think of too much that I wouldn’t do when she asks for my help. No matter how many times I tell my friends that I can’t give legal advice, they will still call with a question asking me “what would you do!”

Blog: Ethical Walls

When a firm hires a paralegal who has worked for opposing counsel or an opposing client, the entire firm should be notified that an ethical wall is to be erected around the paralegal and that no one may do the following:

Blog: Legal Research: Going Beyond Legal Terminology

One of the many specialized tasks a paralegal performs is legal research. Our extensive training comprises of (but no limited too) research planning, generating keyword search terms and phrases, understanding primary and secondary sources, and knowing how case laws are recorded. Research today is typically performed electronically, via the internet. Consequently, paralegal research training has become extensive, that is, beyond the scope of legal terminology. Performing organic searches on the internet (on any given topic) requires a paralegal to have knowledge in search engine optimization or (SEO), and applying Boolean Logic.

Blog: No Paralegal Experience?

Time and time again I hear from paralegal hopefuls who say that they have no paralegal experience, but want to break into the legal field. Since most states have no set requirements to work as a paralegal, employees get to pretty much set their own requirements. These requirements can be any combination of education, work experience or certification, or none of the above.

New Technology Series: Repositories & Trial Presentation Software

Repositories & Trial Presentation Software: Why Use Them and How to Use Them Efficiently.

—— Repositories - Safe keeping or Preservation ——

Wikipedia defines a Repository as commonly referring to a location for storage, often for safety or preservation.

As a paralegal one of our fundamental tasks is to be the custodian of the information related to the file. That information must be kept safe.

Blog: “Me” Time is Important, Too

I love to be productive, and sometimes that leads me to simply take on too much. My personal inclination is to work (on something, anything) until I absolutely fall over. Staying home for the evening and doing nothing seems like a total waste of time to me, ... but you know what, sometimes that’s exactly what I have to do.

New Technology Series: The Smart Phone for Paralegals

Smartphones, including the BlackBerry and iPhone, have become widely used tools for lawyers and paralegals who require a mobile platform for instant communication and an on-the-go access to information; today, in some instances, smartphones can even stand in for a laptop given the multitude of applications that are now available available. Indeed, a smartphone can be a lifesaving tool if you are in a situation where you do not have access to a laptop, iPad or gasp! - a hornbook.

What is a Legal Nurse Consultant?

A Legal Nurse Consultant (LNC) can help a single case not only in many different ways but can also be helpful in many different types of cases.

From acting as a liaison between legal professionals, medical professionals, and clients; the LNC can screen cases for validity, educate the legal team regarding case issues, research key points to assist in the accumulation of evidence, obtain, review, and analyze records; prepare summaries, chronologies, and exhibits; define standards of care applicable to cases of negligence; and provide support in the development of questioning in depositions, discovery, trials, and other proceedings.

New Technology Series: The Top iPad Apps for Paralegals

The iPad serves as a media consumption device that can be used to store and organize digital documents, photographs, video files, and sound files. Also, unlike a desktop or laptop computer that requires constant scrolling on the screen to read a document, the iPad provides a comfortable full-page display. In addition, the iPad is an "instant-on" device and there is no annoying boot-up time to suffer through.