Top 5 Factors That Effect Paralegal Salaries


There are so many variables involved in paralegal salaries that it's almost impossible to pin down an exact range. The median starting salary is currently in the area of $43,000 a year but that's just an average. Choose a paralegal career because you saw someone on TV who makes $100,000 a year and you're probably going to be disappointed, at least in the beginning. Here are the top 5 factors that affect your paralegal salary to show you why there's such a wide variance.
Geographical location
In most cases, a paralegal working for a large firm in New York City is going to make a lot more money that someone working for the same size firm in a small town in the Midwest. New York has a higher cost of living than almost any other city in the country. People who live and work there just naturally make more money.
Education
Obviously, someone with a higher level of education is able to command a higher salary. To increase your earning potential, consider continuing your education. Learn some new skills like how to use some of the specialized computer programs or how to create PowerPoint presentations.
Specialization
Yes, there are paralegals out there earning 6 figures or more per year. They live in areas that can support those salaries, they have the education needed to get those jobs, and they generally specialize, either in certain skills or certain types of law.
Experience
Of course you're not going to earn those high paralegal salaries right out of college. But the more experience you have, the better your earning potential. And the more time you spend in your chosen field, the higher your salary will be. Be careful here. Don't confuse experience with education. There are some things you have to learn from books. And there are other things you can only learn on the job.
Reputation of the firm
The reputation of the firm you work for will also have a lot to do with your earnings. Again, there are a lot of variables, but there are dozens of law firms with offices all over the world. Those offices may not be located in cities where high salaries are typically paid, but the associates earn those salaries because of the firm they work for, not the actual location of the office.
ing-bottom: 0px; padding-left: 0px; padding-right: 0px; padding-top: 0px;"> A 6-figure paralegal salary like you see on the TV shows is possible and it's out there. You may have to change firms a few times or you might even have to relocate. The best thing you can do is make sure you have a good quality education under your belt and then just start researching all the various opportunities to see what you need to do to move to the next level.
Your paralegal salary is based on a number of factors but the most important is to make sure you choose quality paralegal schools.


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