Blog #4: Research
Research has always been a major component of my professional life. As a 32-year-old, I have worked full time for the last decade. The first eight years of my career were spent as a litigation paralegal, in both criminal and civil law. The job duties of paralegals often require a significant amount of time spent conducting research, often focusing on case law. The meticulous browsing of databases such as LexisNexis and Westlaw has consumed dozens of hours of my workweek. Diligent research is paramount for any employee in the legal field, as all court filings require the attorney to honor legal precedents through the citing of prior, relevant judicial decisions.
For the past two years, I have worked for the Massachusetts Trial Court system, specifically in the probation department of Middlesex Superior Court , which maintains state-level jurisdiction of the largest county in New England. Similarly to my prior occupation as a paralegal, in my present role I am often tasked with conducting research on the defendants under our supervision. Whether I am running criminal background checks, verifying a probationer’s employment and financial status, or investigating potential probation violations, I am often partaking in some form of research.
I have always enjoyed the many research-related tasks of both my current and prior jobs, and I feel that my researching ability is strong, for I would not be a valuable employee without said ability. I believe that a good researcher must be patient, detail-oriented and most importantly concerned with factual accuracy. The absence of any of these traits can lead to one reaching a faulty conclusion built upon a foundation of unsubstantiated information.