Although they are harder to find, there are telecommuting jobs for paralegals that allow them to work from home offices. Most of these employment opportunities are found through popular online job search websites for self-employed professionals, like Upwork and Freelancer.
Patent paralegals work for patent prosecution firms or patent paralegal outsourcing companies. They are expected to have a strong entrepreneurial spirit and have strong business and technical skills. Most of the clients are technology based, such as computer companies, agrarian based, such as food research companies, and manufacturing based, such as equipment manufacturers. The telecommuting position begins after a training period of two to four weeks.
Job candidates will be trained by a registered patent agent. Candidates will need to have good analytical and writing skills, so they will most likely be asked to submit a writing sample. A degree in the target legal area, such as food engineering or computer science, is preferred. Most companies will help new hires pay for courses, materials and patent exam fees in order to take the patent bar exam to become a registered practitioner.
Contracts paralegals provide contractual planning, management and consulting services to both public, private and non-profit clients. They usually specialize in a certain field, such as state and federal government and commercial contracts. Job candidates need to demonstrate knowledge and experience with the development, review and finalizing of contracting policies, agreements and documents. Those who deal with government contracts will need to have knowledge of the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) and the Defense Federal Acquisition Regulation Supplement (DFARS) requirements.
The best job candidates will have experience working with subcontractors, project managers and senior management. An impressive degree of professionalism and portfolio of competence in contract management is essential to be hired. Contract paralegals will review and recommend changes to new service contracts and non-disclosure agreements. They are responsible for analyzing contract details like indemnification provisions, insurance requirements and negotiation clauses.
Compliance paralegals tend to work in heavily regulated industries like finance or health care. A compliance paralegal who works at a hospital will advise executives on contract details to ensure that they meet corporate policies and standards. They will create and manage subcontracts through processing modifications and contract closeouts. They regularly complete and update industry certifications, insurance forms and supplier information databases. Compliance paralegals in hospitals are responsible for catching risk and red flags in contracts.
They inform their supervisors of any potential irregularities, such as additional workers’ compensation costs or insurance expenses for handling potentially harmful materials. They regularly collaborate with operations, accounting, project and human resources managers for new contracts, modifications and funding adjustments. They participate in the development, implementation and documentation of standardized procedures for contract administration and tools that enhance workflow and the sharing of best practices.
Telecommuting jobs for paralegals also include IT supplies and services paralegals, who coordinate the IT vendor contracting process, and immigration paralegals, who work for non-profits from home by answering digital inquires, directing Internet users to online resources and guiding immigrants through complex legal systems and processes.