Top Paralegal Interview Questions with Example Answers [2022]

Prepare for your Paralegal interview by going through these most asked Paralegal interview questions. Additionally, get access to sample answers and interviewer's expectations.

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  • Question: What are your strengths and weaknesses?
  • Question Overview: This is a common question that is asked of all job candidates. The paralegal is no exception. You want to know that the paralegal is aware of their weaknesses and is working to correct them. You also want to know that they are aware of their strengths and are able to leverage them in the workplace.

    Sample Answer: I am very detail oriented and I am always looking for ways to improve my work. My biggest weakness is that I tend to be overly critical of myself.

      What the interviewer is looking for:
    • - Evidence of self-awareness
    • - The ability to articulate any weaknesses
    • - A commitment to continuous improvement

  • Question: What do you know about the Security Exchange Commission?
  • Question Overview: This is a question that is designed to test your paralegal's knowledge of the law. You want to know that they are aware of the legal issues that are relevant to your practice.

    Sample Answer: The Security Exchange Commission is the federal agency that regulates the securities industry.

      What the interviewer is looking for:
    • - Knowledge of the legal issues
    • - The ability to articulate legal concepts
    • - Evidence of legal research skills

  • Question: How would you handle multiple deadlines that needed to be met at the same time?
  • Question Overview: The legal profession is a fast-paced one. There are many deadlines that are not negotiable. You need to know that the paralegal you hire can handle the pressure of multiple deadlines and still produce quality work.

    Sample Answer: I would make sure that I had a plan for each deadline and that I had the resources necessary to meet them.

      What the interviewer is looking for:
    • - The ability to prioritize and organize
    • - The ability to work under pressure
    • - The ability to work well with others

  • Question: Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
  • Question Overview: You need to know that the paralegal is not only interested in the short-term, but also has a long-term vision for their career. The paralegal should be able to articulate a vision that includes their career path and how they will get there.

    Sample Answer: I see myself as a senior paralegal with a large law firm. I want to be able to help others and have a positive impact on the lives of others.

      What the interviewer is looking for:
    • - A clear vision of the future
    • - A plan to achieve the vision
    • - Evidence of a desire for continuous improvement

  • Question: How did you get to this position?
  • Question Overview: The paralegal may have had a long road to their current position. You want to know that they are committed to their career and have the drive to succeed.

    Sample Answer: I started out as a legal assistant and worked my way up.

      What the interviewer is looking for:
    • - Evidence of a long-term career
    • - A history of promotions
    • - A history of taking on additional responsibilities

  • Question: How do you feel about working in a team?
  • Question Overview: The legal profession is a team-oriented one. Even the most experienced attorneys rely on their paralegals to help them with their work. You want to know that your paralegal will be able to work well with others.

    Sample Answer: I have always been a team player. I am able to work well with others and can help them when they need it.

      What the interviewer is looking for:
    • - Evidence of teamwork
    • - The ability to work well with others
    • - The ability to communicate effectively

  • Question: Why do you want to be a paralegal?
  • Question Overview: This is a question that you should be prepared to answer. You want to know that the person that you hire as a paralegal is passionate about the field. They will be more likely to stay with the job and do it well.

    Sample Answer: I have always been interested in law and the legal system. I want to help people who are going through a difficult time.

      What the interviewer is looking for:
    • - Evidence of passion for the field
    • - The ability to articulate why they are interested in the field
    • - A desire to help others

  • Question: What is your biggest weakness?
  • Question Overview: While you want to know that the paralegal is aware of their weaknesses, you also want to know that they are not overly concerned with them. You want to know that they are confident in their ability to perform their job functions and do not let their weaknesses get in the way.

    Sample Answer: I have a tendency to be a perfectionist. I am working on it.

      What the interviewer is looking for:
    • - Evidence of self-awareness
    • - The ability to articulate any weaknesses
    • - A commitment to continuous improvement

  • Question: Why do you want to work for us?
  • Question Overview: The paralegal will be working for you. You need to know that they want to work for you and that they are not just looking for a job. The paralegal needs to be excited about the prospect of working for your firm.

    Sample Answer: I have always been interested in the work that your firm does. I have read about your cases and I am impressed with your reputation.

      What the interviewer is looking for:
    • - Evidence of knowledge of the firm
    • - Evidence of interest in the firm
    • - Evidence of a desire to work for the firm

  • Question: How do you deliver bad news?
  • Question Overview: You are going to have to deliver bad news to your paralegal at some point. You need to know that they can handle it professionally and without taking it personally. You also want to know that they can deliver bad news in a professional manner.

    Sample Answer: I am not afraid of delivering bad news. I try to be as diplomatic as possible, but I also do not sugarcoat the message.

      What the interviewer is looking for:
    • - Diplomacy
    • - The ability to deliver bad news without taking it personally
    • - The ability to deliver bad news professionally

  • Question: What should I ask each candidate to determine who is the best one to hire?
  • Question Overview: The best way to determine which paralegal is the best one for you is to ask each candidate the same questions. This will allow you to compare their responses and determine which one is the best fit for your needs.

    Sample Answer: I would ask each candidate the same questions.

      What the interviewer is looking for:
    • - The ability to think on their feet
    • - The ability to articulate their thoughts
    • - The ability to be concise

  • Question: Can you work independently?
  • Question Overview: The paralegal needs to be able to work independently. They need to be able to take on tasks and complete them without constant supervision. You want to know that they can handle their workload without needing constant oversight.

    Sample Answer: I have been able to work independently for many years. I am very comfortable with my workload and do not need constant oversight.

      What the interviewer is looking for:
    • - Evidence of working independently
    • - The ability to work without supervision
    • - The ability to manage time

  • Question: Tell me about a time when you had multiple responsibilities to handle at once.
  • Question Overview: The paralegal will be expected to handle many different tasks throughout the day. You need to know that they can handle multiple responsibilities at once and still deliver quality work.

    Sample Answer: I am often given multiple assignments at once. I have never had a problem with this. I am able to juggle them all and still deliver quality work.

      What the interviewer is looking for:
    • - The ability to multitask
    • - The ability to prioritize
    • - The ability to handle multiple projects

  • Question: Why do you want to work in a firm versus an in-house?
  • Question Overview: There are many reasons why a paralegal may want to work in a law firm versus an in-house. You want to know that the paralegal is aware of the differences between the two and is not just looking for a job. You also want to know that they are aware of the benefits of working in a law firm.

    Sample Answer: I have always wanted to work in a law firm. I like the fast-paced environment and the challenges that it presents.

      What the interviewer is looking for:
    • - Evidence of knowledge of the differences between the two
    • - A desire to work in a law firm
    • - A desire to work in a law firm

  • Question: What tools do you use to organize your work?
  • Question Overview: The paralegal is responsible for keeping track of many different tasks. They need to be able to organize their work in a way that allows them to be as efficient as possible. You want to know that the paralegal is not only organized, but also that they are able to keep track of their work and the work of others.

    Sample Answer: I use a variety of tools to stay organized. I have a calendar that I use to keep track of my appointments and deadlines. I also have a task management system that I use to keep track of my daily tasks.

      What the interviewer is looking for:
    • - The ability to organize work
    • - The ability to use a calendar
    • - The ability to use a task management system

  • Question: When can you start?
  • Question Overview: This is a question that you should expect to hear at the end of the interview. You need to be prepared to answer it. You should have a good idea of when you can start and what your availability is.

    Sample Answer: I can start as soon as possible. I am available to work Monday through Friday from 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM.

      What the interviewer is looking for:
    • - A clear understanding of when you can start
    • - An understanding of your availability

  • Question: What is a paralegal?
  • Question Overview: You want to know that the paralegal understands the role of a paralegal, and that they are committed to the profession. An answer that shows a lack of understanding of the role of a paralegal is not one that you want to hear.

    Sample Answer: A paralegal is a legal assistant who is responsible for helping attorneys with their work.

      What the interviewer is looking for:
    • - Knowledge of the role of a paralegal
    • - A commitment to the profession
    • - The ability to articulate the role

  • Question: What is your experience in contract review and negotiation?
  • Question Overview: The paralegal who is hired will be responsible for reviewing and negotiating contracts. You want to know that the paralegal has experience in this area and has been successful in the past.

    Sample Answer: I have reviewed and negotiated many contracts in the past. I am very familiar with the process and have had success with it.

      What the interviewer is looking for:
    • - Evidence of experience in contract review
    • - The ability to negotiate contracts
    • - The ability to identify issues in contracts

  • Question: What are some examples of positive and negative management styles that you have experienced?
  • Question Overview: The paralegal may have had a number of different bosses. You want to know that they have been able to work well with all of them. It also shows that they are able to adapt to different management styles.

    Sample Answer: I have worked for both managers who were very hands-on and those who were more hands-off. I have learned from both.

      What the interviewer is looking for:
    • - A history of working with different management styles
    • - The ability to adapt to different management styles
    • - The ability to work well with all management styles

  • Question: How would your previous employer describe you?
  • Question Overview: The paralegal's previous employer is a great source of information about their work ethic and personality. You want to know that the paralegal has a good reputation and that they are well-liked by their former colleagues.

    Sample Answer: My previous employer would describe me as a hard worker who is always willing to help others.

      What the interviewer is looking for:
    • - Positive feedback from previous employer
    • - Evidence of a good work ethic