Roles & Responsibilities of an Intellectual Property Paralegal

A paralegal is usually assigned to work with one or two attorneys and will discuss cases and create a plan of action. Many intellectual property (IP) paralegals handle the initial meeting with clients to access their needs and report back to an attorney.

In this role, responsibilities include:

  • Working with clients to obtain patents, trademarks, or copyrights
  • Filing applications and ensuring their completion
  • Research as assigned by attorneys
  • Communication with clients

Day-to-Day Duties

On a daily basis, an IP paralegal will support an attorney, coordinate with clients, and handle various administrative tasks. Specific day-to-day duties may include:

  1. Initial client intake and assessment
  2. Draft applications for IP matters like trademarks, copyright, domain names, and design
  3. Manage the back-and-forth nature of applications that includes submitting additional materials, responding to appeals, and getting additional information from the client to satisfy IP protection
  4. Prepare and file legal documents for cases involving intellectual property
  5. Provide legal support for discovery
  6. Maintain and generate docket reports for attorneys
  7. Create status reports for multiple cases that are in process
  8. Coordinate with clients via phone, email, and in-person meetings
  9. Provide quotes for interested clients and invoices to existing clients
  10. Various secretarial work and office oversight duties
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Education Requirements

An intellectual property paralegal job description usually mentions a bachelor’s degree in applied law or something similar as a requirement. Aside from a four-year degree, many companies ask for a minimum of one year of experience or more. Exceptions to these requirements can be made for candidates with experience working at bigger law firms.

Required Skills of an Intellectual Property Paralegal

An IP paralegal needs a variety of skills to be successful at a law firm or as part of an in-house team. These required skills often include:

  1. Familiarity with intellectual law, and the application and filing process
  2. Strong organizational skills
  3. Excellent communication and interpersonal skills with the ability to provide clarity to an often complicated topic for clients
  4. Multitasking skills with the ability to juggle deadlines for multiple clients at different stages of the filing processes
  5. Proficiency in Microsoft Word, Excel, and Powerpoint
  6. Typing speed of at least 50 words per minute
  7. Invoicing experience

Intellectual Property Paralegal Salary Range

Wondering what to offer as an intellectual property paralegal salary? As you may expect, salaries range based on experience of the candidate and the size and location of the law firm. However, paralegals generally make an average salary of $51,740 per year. An hourly breakdown hovers just under $25.

Paralegals that specialize in a specific field, like intellectual property, tend to make more than the average salary. How much more is determined by the employer.

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