A virtual paralegal is a great way to outsource legal assignments and reduce overhead costs. A virtual paralegal has the ability to provide the same legal support as an in-house paralegal by performing tasks such as preparing legal documents, legal research, organizing and maintaining client files, and assisting with hearing and trial preparation. Navigating a new virtual paralegal relationship can take some time; the staff at Virtual Paralegal Services suggests these ways to make the most of your virtual paralegal.
Investigate Before Hiring
Even when hiring freelance or virtual paralegals, it is important to hire the right person for your firm beyond just qualifications and experience. Decide if you want someone who prefers to be told exactly how to complete tasks in the precise way you require or someone who can proactively finish a task without micromanagement.
Collect resumes and include background checks in your investigation. Make sure you understand the paralegal’s work history to get a full understanding of the individual. In some cases, it may also be a good idea to receive a writing sample in order to ensure the virtual paralegal’s writing style matches your preference.
At Virtual Paralegal Services, we do the work of hiring and vetting for you. We hire only the most qualified and senior paralegal professionals to service our clients.
Clarify Payment Terms
Are you looking for someone to work on a per assignment fee or an hourly wage? Make sure your virtual paralegal understands that since they are a type of subcontractor, you will not be required to provide healthcare and they will be required to pay their own taxes.
The paralegals at Virtual Paralegal Services do not require hourly minimums or contract terms. VPS makes it simple, invoicing clients twice a month for any service performed by the VPS team.
Give Your Virtual Paralegal Enough Information Regarding the Project (Maybe More)
The more information about the project that your virtual paralegal is given, the better able they are to complete each individual task. By understanding the big picture of the project, your virtual paralegal will have the best opportunity to tailor the assignment specifically to the project.
Make Sure Assignments Have Check-In Points
Both the attorney and the virtual paralegal want work done correctly and complete. In order to assist with communication, as your virtual paralegal is not sitting in the office next door, it is helpful to have check in points during each assignment. A quick “how does this sound” can be sufficient. As the virtual paralegal works more with the attorney, less check-in points may be needed.
Review Your Virtual Paralegal’s Work
Remember that the virtual paralegal is not an attorney and should be supervised as such. Although freelance paralegals may be qualified, it is important to verify their work, as a mistake can result in consequences for the attorney and their law firm.
Virtual Paralegal Services provides a layer of quality control working through senior paralegal coordinators to ensure work is done properly before going out to clients.
If you are interested in learning more about Virtual Paralegal Services or are interested in having on-demand access to a team of paralegal professionals through the VPS team, contact us today.