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The Law Clerk Boom: Find Out Why Law Firms are Hiring More Law Clerk Program Grads

Posted on January 25th, 2019 - Written by: Canadian Business College

law clerk courses

Law clerks play an invaluable role in law offices, governments and the legal departments of large companies. The tasks they perform are varied and depend on the particular role and setting, but some examples might include assisting with legal cases, drafting paperwork like briefs and agreements, preparing meeting notes and generally offering support to the legal team or lawyer they work with.

For anyone who’s good at multitasking, has a strong attention to detail and enjoys fast-paced and analytical work, becoming a law clerk can be a great career move. According to a recent poll from Robert Half Legal, now might be a particularly good time to enter the field.

A 2018 Poll of Canadian Lawyers Suggests an Increase in Demand for Law Clerks

“Hybrid” or “blended” positions for law clerks combine a variety of administrative responsibilities with more standard law clerk duties. According to a 2018 poll developed by Robert Half Legal – a legal staffing and consulting provider with locations in Canada, the US and worldwide – these types of positions could see increased demand in coming years as law firms seek to make efficiencies and transfer duties from first-year lawyers to trained law clerks.

According to the poll, 40% of Canadian lawyers surveyed said that, in their opinion, blended or hybrid law clerk/legal assistant positions had become “somewhat more common” in the two preceding years, with another 12% saying they’d become “much more common.”

In the same survey, Canadian lawyers were asked whether their law firm or company had plans to increase or decrease their hiring for blended or hybrid law clerk/legal assistant positions. More than one-quarter said they were planning to increase their hiring, with 26% saying they had plans to “somewhat” increase their hiring and another 2% saying they had plans to “significantly” increase it.

Canadian lawyers surveyed reported plans to increase law clerk hiring

Canadian lawyers surveyed reported plans to increase law clerk hiring

Law Clerks Can Perform Many Duties Otherwise Falling to First Year Lawyers

Unlike secretaries or regular legal assistants, law clerks are billable employees according to the Law Society of Ontario (formerly known as the Law Society of Upper Canada). This means that tasks performed by law clerks can actually be charged to clients, making them cost-effective hires as their wages can be recouped through billing.
They can also save money for clients seeking legal services at more competitive prices, since law clerks receive extensive training during their law clerk program and are capable of performing many of the tasks that would otherwise fall to a first-year lawyer with a higher billing rate.

Law Clerk Training Can Give You the Skills You Need to Begin Your Career

A law clerk program can equip you with all of the skills needed to succeed in the field, giving you a broad base of knowledge with regards to legal research, contracts and litigation. Upon graduation, students are prepared to draft and prepare documents in several areas of law including real estate, litigation, estates and corporate law.

With the increase in demand for hybrid or blended law clerks/legal assistants, this means that law clerk training can be a great opportunity for students to get the experience and expertise they need to begin a rewarding career in the law.

Law clerk training prepares students to work in several different areas of law

Law clerk training prepares students to work in several different areas of law

Are you ready to start a new career as a law clerk?

Contact Canadian Business College for more information about our law clerk program.

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4 Interesting Career Opportunities You Can Explore After Paralegal Training

Posted on January 23rd, 2019 - Written by: Canadian Business College

paralegal training

For anyone with a strong analytical mind, a keen attention to detail, and an interest in the law, paralegal training can open up a wide range of fascinating and rewarding career paths.

This is particularly true in Ontario, where paralegals are licensed and regulated by the Law Society of Ontario (formerly known as the Law Society of Upper Canada), and can represent clients in tribunals and lower courts, draft legal documents, offer legal advice and perform an array of other duties, many of which, in other jurisdictions, would require a licensed lawyer.

These paralegals can find work in any number of areas, from the corporate sector, to private law firms, to federal, provincial and local government agencies, and even in private practices.

If you’re interested in pursuing a career in law and want to know more about the options available to licensed paralegals in Ontario, here are four interesting career opportunities you can explore after paralegal training.

Join a Law Firm and Work with Lawyers after Paralegal Training

One option for paralegals who have completed their training and licensing is to find a position in a law firm, assisting lawyers by gathering and analyzing data, preparing affidavits and other legal documents, investigating precedents relevant to a case and performing a broad range of other tasks. This can be a great way to gain valuable, hands-on legal experience after earning your paralegal diploma.

Defend Clients Being Prosecuted for Provincial Offences as a Paralegal

Provincial offences, prosecuted under the Provincial Offenses Act (POA), include a range of minor, non-criminal offences such as speeding, entering prohibited premises and public intoxication. Unlike other provinces, in Ontario, paralegals are permitted to represent clients in court on such matters.

As a paralegal taking on provincial offenses, your work might include interviewing clients and witnesses, building a case and presenting it in court, and advising your client on any possible appeals. Paralegals interested in defending clients on provincial charges could find work in legal firms, or could also start their own practices.

In Ontario, paralegals can represent clients in court for provincial offenses

In Ontario, paralegals can represent clients in court for provincial offenses

Paralegals Can Help Tenants and Landlords Assert their Rights

Paralegals in Ontario can also find work representing landlords and tenants in Landlord and Tenant Board Hearings. If a landlord neglects repairs, enters a tenant’s unit without permission or harasses a tenant, as a paralegal, you can help them file an application with the Landlord and Tenant Board, prepare their case and represent them at the hearing. Likewise, paralegals can help landlords with tenant issues assert their rights over their property by assisting with the eviction process or with board hearings. Like those specializing in POA offences, paralegals specializing in landlord-tenant law can find work either as part of a larger firm or start their own private practice after completing paralegal training.

Paralegal Training Can Prepare You for a Career in Small Claims Court

Small claims court allows private litigants to sue individuals and businesses for money or the return of personal property valued under $25,000. It’s regularly used to recover unpaid debts, resolve disputes with contractors, recover expenses from broken contracts, and generally assist individuals and businesses in recouping lost money or property. Paralegals specializing in small claims court issues can use their legal expertise and skills to help plaintiffs prepare their claims, gather evidence and argue their case in court.

Paralegals can help clients recover lost money or property in small claims court

Paralegals can help clients recover lost money or property in small claims court

Are you interested in pursuing a career as a paralegal?

Contact Canadian Business College for more information about our paralegal courses.

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The Importance of Choosing a High-Quality Paralegal Diploma Program

Posted on January 11th, 2019 - Written by: Canadian Business College

paralegal courses

In contrast to the rest of Canada, paralegals in Ontario enjoy a broad scope of practice that goes well beyond the duties of a simple legal assistant. They can offer legal advice to clients concerning their interests, rights or responsibilities; negotiate on behalf of a client; and draft documents for use in a proceeding. They can also represent clients in court in a variety of situations, such as in small-claims court, in the Ontario Court of Justice under the Provincial Offenses Act and on summary conviction offenses where the maximum penalty is less than six months imprisonment or a $5,000 fine. Paralegals can find work with law firms, corporations and the government, and many even start their own private practices.

This broad range of possible duties and paths makes being a paralegal a great career choice for those with analytical minds, high attention to a detail and a strong interest in the law.

If you’re interested in beginning your training as a paralegal in the province of Ontario, here’s what you should know about the importance of completing a high-quality paralegal diploma program, which can help you begin your new law career on the best possible footing, and give you the skills and knowledge needed to thrive and advance in the role.

Accreditation is Essential for Paralegal Programs

When choosing a paralegal program, it’s essential to make sure that the institution you’re considering is accredited. In Ontario, this means accreditation from the Law Society of Ontario (formerly known as the Law Society of Upper Canada), a professional association responsible for the self-regulation of lawyers and paralegals in the province.

This is particularly important because in Ontario, where paralegals engage in a wider scope of practice than in other provinces, you have to meet certain strict licensing requirements in order to become a legally recognized paralegal. In order to earn your license, you must pass the Law Society’s Licensing Exam, a prerequisite of which is a diploma or certificate from an accredited program. Without this, students will not be able to take the exam, and will not be able to practice as paralegals.

Becoming licensed is one of the first steps for students beginning their paralegal careers, so accreditation should be a primary concern when researching paralegal programs.

Canadian Business School’s paralegal diploma program is accredited by the Law Society of Ontario

Canadian Business School’s paralegal diploma program is accredited by the Law Society of Ontario

Paralegal Courses Should Give Students a Broad Foundation in Canadian Law

A high-quality paralegal diploma program can help you prepare for the licensing exam while giving you a broad introduction to the Canadian legal system and the many specialities and areas of focus contained within. Canadian Business College’s one-year paralegal diploma program, for example, includes modules on a variety of topics including legal research, litigation, torts, contracts, advocacy, criminal practice, landlord and tenant law, immigration, ethics and more. Students graduate with a well-rounded knowledge the processes and concepts found within Canadian and provincial law, and the many areas of specialization they can choose to pursue as they continue their careers as paralegals.

Study with Practicing Lawyers and Paralegals

It is also important to choose a high-quality paralegal diploma program in order to connect with well-qualified instructors who can not only provide you without a robust knowledge of Canadian Law, but also valuable insights into its current, real-world practice. By studying with practicing lawyers and paralegals, students can ensure they have the most well-rounded and up-to-date education possible, preparing them to thrive in their future positions as paralegals.

Students at Canadian Business College study with practicing lawyers and paralegals

Students at Canadian Business College study with practicing lawyers and paralegals

Are you interested in pursuing a career as a paralegal in Ontario?

Contact Canadian Business College for more information about our paralegal courses.

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Decided on an Accounting Program? Our College Will Help You Find The Right Financial Aid Options

Posted on January 4th, 2019 - Written by: Canadian Business College

payroll administrator careers

Canadian Business College’s Accounting & Payroll Administrator Program can prepare you with all the skills and knowledge you need to begin a long and rewarding career as a bookkeeper, accounting clerk or payroll administrator. You’ll develop a strong foundation in the principles of accounting and accounting software like Sage Simply Accounting and Sage 300 ERP, as well as learn how to track financial records, handle payroll and billing functions and perform a wide range of other accounting and payroll responsibilities. It’s a perfect program for anyone with a strong attention to detail and an interest in business looking to set off on a new career path with lots of opportunities.

If it’s the right program for you, you might be wondering how you can finance your training in order to move on to this next step in your career. Fortunately, there are many financial aid options available for those looking to get back to school in Ontario and Canadian Business College can assist students in finding the one that works best for them.

Here’s a quick overview of some of the options available for prospective students looking to finance an accounting and payroll program in Ontario.

Pay Tuition in Monthly Installments with the Interest-Free Payment Plan

One option that might be well-suited to students who still expect to have a regular income while completing their studies is Canadian Business College’s interest-free payment plan. Students have the option of paying their tuition for diploma programs in monthly installments, with no interest for the duration of their program.

The Lifelong Learning Plan is a Great Option for RRSP Holders

For those with a registered retirement savings plan (RRSP), the Lifelong Learning Plan (LLP) is a great option for financing your own education or that of a partner.

The LLP is a Government of Canada initiative that allows you to withdraw amounts from your RRSP to finance full-time training or education for either yourself, or your spouse or common-law partner. You might be eligible for the LLP if you own an RRSP, are a Canadian resident, and are not currently in a repayment period for a previous withdrawal from your RRSP.

The Lifelong Learning Plan is a great option for those with RRSPs

The Lifelong Learning Plan is a great option for those with RRSPs

OSAP Offers Grants and Loans to Help Finance Your Accounting Program

The Ontario Student Assistance Program (OSAP) is a financial aid program that offers both grants and loans to help residents of Ontario (including Canadian citizens, permanent residents and protected persons) pay for college or university, including those training for payroll administrator careers.

The amount that a student can get depends on their education expenses, their course load, and their personal financial situation, and can help pay for tuition, books and supplies, student fees, living expenses, and even child care, for students with children.

Second Career Helps Laid Off Workers Train for Work in a New Field

If you’ve been laid off and haven’t been able to find work, or if you’ve been laid off and are working a temporary job to cover costs, you might be eligible to receive funding for an accounting program through Second Career. This program is designed to help those who have been laid off gain the skills needed to set off on a new career. With Second Career, you can apply for up to $28,000 in funding to help pay for tuition, books, transportation and living costs.

Second Career can help workers who have been laid off retrain for a career in payroll and accounting

Second Career can help workers who have been laid off retrain for a career in payroll and accounting

Are you interested in accounting and payroll administration courses?

Contact Canadian Business College for more information about the financial aid options available for students.

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