September 2021 marks the third year of my association with National Association of Licensed Paralegals. I still vividly remember talking to Amanda Hamilton while planning to join NALP.
Before you read further, a brief introduction is, of course, called for. My name is Vikas, and I run a firm of Family Law Paralegals called Court Help Limited (www.incourt.co.uk) based in the West Midlands with 55 five-star Google reviews.
As a member of NALP, I and my team provide Family Law services and assist those members of the public who are litigants in person. As a Fellow of NALP I have requested for, and have been granted, right of audience in many court hearings including those of District and Circuit Judges
NALP mentioned by the Circuit Judge – and the benefits of being a member, at the Fellow level, of NALP
Being a certified Fellow of NALP provided me with gravitas in the courts. I must mention that once, while I was assisting the father (my client) in a final contested hearing in a Child Arrangements Orders Application being held in front of a Circuit Judge, Her Honour took notice of my Fellow membership of NALP while granting me the Right of Audience to represent my client, as well as to make submissions and question the opposite party.
It is with pride I share that we achieved the desired results against the learned barrister who was representing the opposite party funded by legal aid.
While I cannot share the details of the case due to confidentiality, it is evidenced from the outcome of this case that experienced specialist paralegals can do an equally good job or sometimes a better job then our counterparts who are qualified as solicitors or barristers.
Are paralegals given their fair share?
It is time that the legal setup of our country recognises that well experienced, certified, insured, and regulated paralegals should be granted the right of audience as well as the capability to perform reserved activities just as our solicitor counterparts. I believe that all necessary regulations, insurance, qualification and or certification should be mandated for the paralegals just as it is for solicitors and barristers. Paralegals form the pillar of legal work in England & Wales and are more than capable.
NALP Professionals knowledge and the art of legal authoring
That said, as a Fellow of NALP, while running Court Help Limited, my firm and I are delivering complex Family Law services like Non Molestation Application and Defence support that can easily compete with those drafted by a Solicitor’s firm.
I strongly believe that it is the knowledge, experience, professional conduct and the client services offered that drives success and satisfaction as a paralegal.
What does success look like?
Success is not just defined by logos of solicitors, barristers, paralegals, or legal executives. It is defined by knowledge, confidence, and the ability to serve the line of work you pick up as a NALP Certified professional. I run a growing firm with a growing team. This may not have happened, had it not been for the call with Amanda Hamilton of NALP.
NALP is a membership body that can provide you with support on your chosen journey. And as a member of NALP I wish you all the best in your career or business. I would also like to take a moment to thank Amanda & Ashleigh for all their support over the last couple of years.