The difference between Paralegal & Law Clerk programs.

Paralegal program in Ontario teaches subjects related to paralegal’s permissible areas of practice and other skills / competencies such as advocacy, alternate dispute resolution, tribunal practice and procedures, ethics and practice management. It equips them with skills necessary to represent clients and run their own business.

Law Clerk program teaches students to support lawyers in their work. Besides the knowledge of various practice areas (including lucrative practice areas such as Real Estate, Family Law, Criminal Law, Corporate Law, Wills & Estates Law which are excluded for Paralegals) they are taught to do specific chores like a first draft of a separation agreement or pre-nuptial, or to interview clients to complete financial statements in family law cases. They are also taught to prepare documents, maintain records and communicate with clients on standard steps in corporate, real estate matters and superior court matters. By and large Law Clerks do most of the standard bread and butter tasks for the lawyer. They are not ‘independent’ paralegals as they work under the supervision and licence of the lawyer who takes full legal responsibility, but they work very independently in the lawyer’s office.

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