Immigration Paralegal Job Description [Updated for 2024]

immigration paralegal job description

In the ever-evolving world of immigration law, the demand for immigration paralegals is steadily growing.

As global mobility continues to increase, so does the need for skilled professionals who can navigate, support, and secure the legal pathways of immigration.

But let’s dig deeper: What’s truly expected from an immigration paralegal?

Whether you are:

  • A job seeker looking to understand the core responsibilities of this role,
  • A hiring manager defining the ideal candidate,
  • Or simply fascinated by the intricacies of immigration law,

You’re in the right place.

Today, we present a customizable immigration paralegal job description template, designed for easy posting on job boards or career sites.

Let’s delve right into it.

Immigration Paralegal Duties and Responsibilities

Immigration Paralegals assist attorneys in all aspects of immigration law.

Their primary role is to facilitate the successful submission of immigration applications and petitions by gathering documents, conducting research, and drafting legal papers.

Their daily duties and responsibilities include:

  • Assist attorneys in the preparation of immigration applications and petitions
  • Communicate with clients to gather necessary information and documents
  • Research and stay updated on changes in immigration laws and procedures
  • Draft affidavits, legal correspondence and other documents
  • Organize and maintain client files and case tracking system
  • Prepare visa packets for consular processing
  • Help in preparing for court proceedings by organizing exhibits, helping with witness preparation, drafting legal documents and briefs
  • Handle administrative tasks such as filing papers, answering phone calls, and scheduling appointments
  • Monitor deadlines and provide timely updates to the attorney and clients

 

Immigration Paralegal Job Description Template

Job Brief

We are seeking a skilled Immigration Paralegal to manage immigration cases on behalf of our clients.

The Immigration Paralegal’s responsibilities include preparing immigration applications, monitoring case progress, and providing administrative support to our legal team.

Candidates should be highly organized, meticulous, and capable of working under pressure to meet deadlines.

An understanding of immigration law and procedure, as well as strong written and verbal communication skills, are essential.

 

Responsibilities

  • Prepare immigration applications and petitions for legal review
  • Conduct research to support legal proceedings
  • Monitor case progress and communicate updates to clients
  • Maintain accurate case documentation and records
  • Provide administrative support to lawyer and enhance office effectiveness
  • Handle communication with clients, witnesses, and court personnel
  • Coordinate appointments, including all correspondence and logistics necessary
  • Meet with clients to gather necessary information and signatures

 

Qualifications

  • Proven working experience as a paralegal, ideally in immigration law
  • Strong research and report-generating skills
  • Ability to work under pressure and meet deadlines
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills
  • Proficient in Microsoft Office, databases, and legal research software
  • Knowledge of immigration law and procedure
  • Paralegal Associate Degree or other relevant certification

 

Benefits

  • 401(k) plan
  • Health, dental, and vision insurance
  • Life insurance
  • Paid time off
  • Continuing education opportunities

 

Additional Information

  • Job Title: Immigration Paralegal
  • Work Environment: Office setting with occasional travel for legal proceedings or client meetings.
  • Reporting Structure: Reports to Lead Attorney or Managing Partner.
  • Salary: Salary is dependent on candidate experience and qualifications, as well as market and business considerations.
  • Location: [City, State] (specify the location or indicate if remote)
  • Employment Type: Full-time
  • Equal Opportunity Statement: We are an equal opportunity employer and value diversity at our firm. We do not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, color, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, age, marital status, veteran status, or disability status.
  • Application Instructions: Please submit your resume and a cover letter outlining your qualifications and experience to [email address or application portal].

 

What Does an Immigration Paralegal Do?

An Immigration Paralegal is a legal professional who specializes in immigration law and assists attorneys in the process of helping clients navigate through immigration procedures.

They are typically employed by law firms, governmental agencies, or non-profit organizations and work under the supervision of a licensed attorney.

Their duties often include preparing and filing documentation for visas, green cards, citizenship and asylum requests.

They conduct legal research, draft legal documents, and assist in gathering necessary information such as criminal records or proof of refugee status.

Immigration Paralegals are also responsible for communicating with clients to gather information, update them on their case status, and answer their queries.

They might also be involved in interviewing clients, witnesses, or other involved parties.

They are required to maintain an understanding of ever-changing immigration laws and regulations, and ensure that all paperwork and legal procedures comply with these laws.

In the event of court proceedings, Immigration Paralegals may assist attorneys by preparing court submissions, organizing exhibits, and handling any other administrative tasks related to the hearing.

Their role is crucial in helping clients navigate the complex and often stressful process of immigration.

 

Immigration Paralegal Qualifications and Skills

An adept immigration paralegal should possess a range of legal, administrative, and interpersonal skills, such as:

  • Knowledge of immigration laws and procedures is crucial to help clients navigate through complex immigration process.
  • Research skills to find relevant legal precedents, regulations and laws related to the client’s case.
  • Ability to prepare legal documents like affidavits, briefs, applications, and appeals with precision and accuracy.
  • Strong written and verbal communication skills to interact effectively with clients, attorneys, and immigration officials and to present case findings clearly.
  • Organization skills to manage multiple cases simultaneously, keep track of important dates, and maintain client files in a systematic manner.
  • Detail-oriented to ensure accuracy of information in legal documents and forms, as errors can lead to serious consequences for clients.
  • Interpersonal skills to build trust with clients, many of whom may be dealing with stressful and sensitive immigration issues.
  • Proficiency with computer software like Microsoft Office and legal research platforms such as Westlaw or LexisNexis.

 

Immigration Paralegal Experience Requirements

Entry-level Immigration Paralegals typically need to have a minimum of 1 to 2 years of legal support experience, often gained through internships or part-time positions in law firms or legal departments.

This experience provides exposure to legal terminology, research, document preparation, and filing procedures that are relevant to the field.

In some cases, candidates may gain this experience through roles in immigration agencies or non-profit organizations that focus on immigration matters.

Candidates with 3 to 5 years of experience often have worked in full-time paralegal positions, assisting attorneys in preparing for trials, hearings, and meetings.

They may have developed specialized skills, such as proficiency in immigration law research, drafting legal documents, and managing immigration case files.

Those with more than 5 years of experience might have experience managing junior paralegals or legal assistants, and they may have served as the primary point of contact for clients in immigration cases.

In addition to job experience, a paralegal certificate or degree in legal studies can be advantageous and may be required by some employers.

Proficiency in a second language, especially one that is commonly spoken by immigration populations, may also be beneficial.

 

Immigration Paralegal Education and Training Requirements

Immigration Paralegals typically require an associate’s degree in paralegal studies or a related field.

Many employers prefer candidates with a bachelor’s degree in law, criminal justice, or a related field.

In addition to formal education, paralegal certification can be beneficial.

This can be obtained through various organizations such as the National Association of Legal Assistants or the National Federation of Paralegal Associations.

Immigration paralegals should also possess a solid knowledge of immigration law and procedures.

This can be gained through coursework, internships, or on-the-job training.

Some positions may require immigration paralegals to have experience working in a law firm or in an immigration law environment.

Continued education is crucial in this field, given the ever-changing nature of immigration law.

Therefore, immigration paralegals are often expected to attend workshops, seminars, and other professional development activities to stay updated with the latest developments and changes in immigration law.

Language skills, especially in languages commonly spoken by immigrant groups, can also be highly beneficial for immigration paralegals.

This can include Spanish, Chinese, Arabic, and other languages.

 

Immigration Paralegal Salary Expectations

An Immigration Paralegal can expect to earn an average salary of $52,220 (USD) per year.

The actual salary can vary depending on factors such as experience, specialized skills, location, and the size and type of the employing firm or organization.

 

Immigration Paralegal Job Description FAQs

What skills does an Immigration Paralegal need?

An Immigration Paralegal needs excellent written and verbal communication skills to prepare documents and interact with clients.

They should have strong organizational and multitasking skills to manage multiple cases at once.

A keen eye for detail is also crucial as they will need to ensure all the legal documents are prepared correctly.

Lastly, they must have a thorough knowledge of immigration laws and regulations.

 

Do Immigration Paralegals need a degree?

Yes, typically, an Immigration Paralegal would need a bachelor’s degree in paralegal studies or a related field.

Some employers prefer candidates with a certificate in paralegal studies, especially one approved by the American Bar Association (ABA).

Knowledge and experience in immigration law is a major plus.

 

What should you look for in an Immigration Paralegal resume?

An Immigration Paralegal’s resume should include their educational background in law or paralegal studies.

It should showcase their experience with immigration procedures and laws, which can be through past employment, internships, or volunteer work.

Also, look for skills such as fluency in a second language, research skills, and proficiency with legal software.

 

What qualities make a good Immigration Paralegal?

A good Immigration Paralegal should have a deep understanding of immigration laws and procedures.

They should be detail-oriented to ensure all documents are prepared correctly and deadlines are met.

Interpersonal skills are also important as they often interact with clients, legal professionals, and government officials.

They should also be culturally sensitive, as they will be working with clients from various backgrounds.

 

Is it difficult to hire an Immigration Paralegal?

The difficulty in hiring an Immigration Paralegal depends on the specific requirements of the job and the current job market.

As immigration laws continue to evolve, there is a growing demand for paralegals specialized in this field.

The key is to find candidates who not only have the necessary qualifications and experience but also those who are dedicated and show a strong understanding of immigration law and policy.

 

Conclusion

Voila!

Today, we’ve unfolded the real essence of being an immigration paralegal.

And guess what?

It’s not just about paperwork.

It’s about shaping the global future, one immigration case at a time.

With our handy immigration paralegal job description template and real-world examples, you’re ready to take the leap.

But why stop there?

Dive deeper with our job description generator. It’s your go-to tool for creating meticulously detailed listings or fine-tuning your resume to perfection.

Remember:

Every case you handle contributes to the larger global narrative.

Let’s shape that future. Together.

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