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As you search the internet for different types of work-at-home jobs, you may not find jobs in the legal field at the top of the results. This may be because doing legal jobs at a home is a pretty new concept. If you are interested in working in the legal arena, you’ll be glad to know that because freelancing is becoming more and more common, there are now several different types of work-at-home legal jobs.
In some of these types of work-at-home jobs you work directly with lawyers, and in some you don’t work with lawyers at all. Some of these types of freelance work are an integral part of the legal field and some are more loosely associated with it.
Familiarity with legal terminology and legal concepts is important when in the legal field. In some of the following freelance legal jobs, it’s probably best that you live in or have lived in the country where the job is located. This is so that you will have insider familiarity with that country’s legal system. This way you’ll be able to better understand some things that people not familiar with that particular legal system might not understand.
7 Work-at-Home Legal Jobs
There are a pretty good variety of work-at-home jobs associated with the legal arena which require different skill sets and are suitable for different personality types. Here are 7 really great work-at-home legal jobs.
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What is a paralegal? A paralegal is a non-lawyer who has been trained in legal matters and works in the legal field. Paralegals are basically legal assistants to lawyers.
Work-at-home paralegals perform the same tasks as in-house paralegals such as communicating with clients, doing legal research and preparing legal reports.
What is the paralegal job outlook? According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the job outlook for paralegals (and legal assistants) is much better than the national average, with 18% growth expected from 2018 to 2028.
How much can I earn as a paralegal? Study.com shows that in 2015 the average income for paralegals was $50,940 per year or $24.49 per hour. This study was likely of in-house paralegals and not work-at-home paralegals.
How can I become a paralegal? Education requirements for paralegals vary across countries, regions and law firms. Most paralegals at least in the U.S. should have a minimum of a two-year degree, though, and frequently a Bachelor’s degree. You will probably also need certification. There are many brick and mortar as well as online programs where you can learn how to become a paralegal.
Where can I find a job as a work-at-home paralegal? You can look for work-at-home paralegal jobs on sites such as Virtual Paralegal Services. Job search sites like Indeed and Simply Hired also list openings for work-at-home paralegals.
What is a scopist? A scopist transcribes into written documents the words which are typed onto steno machines by court reporters. Most of the work that scopists do is legal work, and they work directly with court reporters. You can read an in-depth definition of what a scopist is here.
What is the job outlook for scopists? According to Linda Evenson, founder of Internet Scoping School, the future of the scopist profession is bright. You can read my interview with Linda and learn what she says about her scopist training program and what she thinks the futures holds for scopists right here.
How much do scopists earn? You can read the detailed article I wrote about how much scopists earn right here.
How can I learn to be a scopist? Many scopists were trained as court reporters. If you haven’t trained as a court reporter, you will need training to learn scoping. You can read details about different ways to become a scopist right here. You can take a free scoping mini-course here.
Where can I find a job as a work-at-home scopist? Once you become a scopist you will find scopist work primarily by connecting with court reporters in Facebook groups and elsewhere. If you take formal scopist training, the scopist training school will also help you with finding court reporter clients.
Work-at-Home Court Reporter
What is a court reporter? A freelance court reporter (as opposed to an official court reporter who works in court) does part of their work out in the field at depositions, arbitrations and other legal and non-legal matters, and they do part of their work at home in scoping their transcripts into final written form.
What is the job outlook for work-at-home court reporters? Now some court reporters are starting to do even more of their work from home. Some depositions and other matters are held remotely where everyone, including sometimes the court reporter, can attend remotely from different locations. This is really a good thing for freelance court reporters, as driving to and working in different locations every day wastes a lot of time and effort that could be better spent elsewhere. Court reporters who are captioners are already working at home.
How much can I earn as a work-at-home court reporter? If remote court reporting continues to grow, you could potentially earn as much working remotely at home as other freelance court reporters who go on-site to work.
How can I become a court reporter? It takes at least two years to get through court reporting school, but if you’re already a court reporter, already studying court reporting or thinking about studying court reporting, you can now look into working remotely. This could become more common in the future.
Where can I find work as a work-at-home court reporter? Not very many places currently and nowhere specifically. Remote court reporting work seems to be through word of mouth only right now. However, as times moves on and more of the world continues to work remotely, court reporters should see a shift in that direction too.
Work-at-Home Legal Proofreader
What is a proofreader? A proofreader carefully reads every word of paper and digital documents to check for accuracy of spelling, grammar, punctuation and layout. A proofreader needs to pay attention to the details of the document, as they are the final person who checks documents before they are published.
What is the job outlook for proofreaders? Proofreading will continue to grow. Legal documents are very important and proofreading them is very important as well.
How much can I earn as a legal proofreader? Proofreaders can earn quite good money. According to Indeed.com, proofreaders in the U.S. make an average of $18.51 per hour. You can actually make quite a bit more than this. I made at least twice that much when I did a bit of freelance proofreading work several years ago. For more details about how much you can earn, the founder of the popular online proofreading course Proofread Anywhere lays out in this article exactly how much she earned as a proofreader in one year.
How can I become a legal proofreader? Legal proofreading is more involved and difficult than many people think it will be, and you really should have training before offering your services as a legal proofreader. You can take a class to learn how to read court transcripts for court reporters, or if you’re interested in more general proofreading, there are online courses for general proofreading as well.
Where can I find work as a legal proofreader? You’ll probably find that most of the work at home for legal proofreaders is proofreading transcripts for court reporters. There are Facebook groups where proofreaders can connect with court reporters, and you can also contact various court reporting firms to offer your services as a legal proofreader. You can also look on sites like Glassdoor and Fiverr.
Work-at-Home Legal Virtual Assistant
What is a legal virtual assistant? A virtual assistant is a person who performs one or more tasks for one or more individuals or companies from any location they choose. Legal virtual assistants do not seem to be very common in all countries, but this is a fairly common work-at-home job in the United States.
Legal virtual assistants perform tasks such as bookkeeping answering phones, social media marketing, calendar management. event planning, meeting organization, lead generation, website content creation and a lot more.
What is the job outlook for legal VA’s? With the world shifting increasingly towards freelancing, the future for legal virtual assistants is very bright. Payscale.com shows that legal assistants (although not necessarily virtual legal assistants) in Australia average about $52,000 per year and Salary.com shows that the pay is approximately the same in the U.S.
How much can I earn as a legal VA? According to PayScale, the average pay for virtual assistants is $10 to $28 per hour.
How can I become a legal VA? If you already have virtual assistant experience or if you know how to do any of the tasks that virtual assistants do, you may already have the skills it takes to be a legal virtual assistant. If not, in the Fully Booked VA package of online courses you can learn how to be an email VA and a project management VA, both of which are useful skills in the legal world. You can enroll in Fully Booked VA right here.
How can I find work as a legal virtual assistant? Many work-at-home virtual assistant jobs exist and there will likely be more in the legal arena in the coming years. You can look for legal VA work on the virtual assistant site Equivity as well as places like Indeed.com.
Work-at-Home Legal Transcriptionist
What is a legal transcriptionist? Attorneys, paralegals and other legal professionals use legal transcriptionists to produce the documents they need in order to do their jobs every day. Legal transcriptionists listen to audio recordings of correspondence, interviews and more and simultaneously type them up into verbatim written documents.
What is the job outlook for work-at-home legal transcriptionists? Janet Shaughnessy, founder and educator at Transcribe Anywhere, an online school which teach legal transcription, says the amount of work given to transcriptionists is growing all the time. You can read what Janet has to say about Transcribe Anywhere and what she thinks the future will hold for legal transcriptionists here.
How much can I earn as a legal transcriptionist? According to Zip Recruiter, legal transcriptionists in the U.S. make an average of $34,000 a year.
How can I become a work-at-home legal transcriptionist? You really do need to know what you’re doing in order to work as a legal transcriptionist. Take this free mini-course to learn more about being a legal transcriptionist.
Where can I find work as a work-at-home legal transcriptionist? Transcription is a big and growing field, and there are plenty of companies where you can find transcription work. You’ll find several places where you can get freelance transcription work here.
Work-at-Home Freelance Notary Public
What is a Notary? In the United Kingdom and Australia, being a notary is a big deal, and most notaries are lawyers. In some provinces of Canada, notaries must have a law degree and in other provinces they must have taken a university course. In the United States, though, most anyone can become a notary. This is a good thing for people who want to work at home in the U.S., as notaries can bring in a bit of income.
In the United States, a freelance notary public is an individual certified by the state in which they live to perform notarial functions, such as notarizing documents and swearing in witnesses for legal testimony. In some states, notaries can legally marry people.
Many notaries work in offices but other notaries work at home. A notary can work with businesses or individuals, or a combination of the two.
What is the job outlook for notaries? Notaries perform several tasks, all of which are necessary in the legal world. Depending on where you live, there could be quite a lot of notary work available into the foreseeable future.
How much can I earn as a freelance notary? If you work as a notary, you likely will not be earning a full-time income. However, being a notary is a great way to earn extra income in the legal field at home. Income for work-at-home notaries varies a lot, but according to PayScale a notary public earns an average of nearly $13 per hour.
How do I become a work-at-home notary? Each state in the U.S. has its own requirements for being a notary. The National Notary Association has a searchable database of each state’s guidelines and rules, so it’s a good idea to review the requirements in your location. Wherever you live, you probably need to be at least 18, complete training, pass a test and buy supplies in order to work as a notary at home. You can read some FAQs about how to become a notary here.
How can I find work as a work-at-home notary? As a work-at-home notary you will likely have to market your services. Here are some tips for how to market yourself. You can read tips for how to find notary work here and here.
With this information and insight into work-at-home legal jobs, you now have a head start on working in the legal arena in a job you love.
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Sabina Lohr is a lifelong freelancer turned entrepreneur who created World of Freelancers to help others discover how to work for themselves online and live the freelance lifestyle. She’s always really enjoyed the freedom that freelancing brings, including several years on and off of working online while traveling and living abroad.