There is a world of difference between an effective resume and its cover letter variant. As a
paralegal that has found one or more jobs that you consider suitable, you may be able to use a
paralegal resume template to craft your
. However, when it comes to the modern cover letter, a customized format is more useful and
than any template
you will find anywhere
. Nevertheless, because you can use templates and examples as guidelines for your paralegal cover
letter, we consulted several HR professionals and got them to make a note of some of the most
helpful tips for writing a modern and persuasive cover letter.
The tips we acquired from HR professionals are presented in this article. Some of these tips revolve
around the structure and format of an effective paralegal cover letter, while others focus on what
to write and what not to write.
Paralegal Cover Letter Example
Modern cover letters are very different from traditional
cover letters in terms of focus and structure. However, focus is the main component that
differentiates these two types of cover letters. For the traditional cover letter, the focus is the
applicant. So, the traditional cover letter is like an elaborate introduction to the person and
qualifications of the job applicant. Therefore, the structure of the cover letter varies from
applicant to applicant and job to job. But in the case of the modern cover letter, the requirements
of the advertised position form the focus. The applicant thus pays more attention to what the hiring
manager wants to have in a qualified paralegal, for example, and crafts the cover letter to overlap
Use a clear black font against a white background. You may use size 12 of the Times New Roman
In line with the modern cover letter’s focus on job requirements, our HR professionals recommended
that the paralegal cover letter be presented in sections. Specifically, these sections are 5 in
total and make up for all the possible requirements of an advertised job role. They are the header,
the greeting, the introduction, the middle section, and the closing. As their names suggest, the
sections allow you to render yourself and your qualifications in an orderly and therefore efficient
manner. As such, hiring managers can easily follow your train of thought and be more inclined to pay
attention to your qualifications.
The header is the first section of your Paralegal cover letter. This section typically contains the
same information as the Name and Contact Information of modern resumes. Specifically, the header
holds your personal information, including your name and contact details. Even though the header
section is short and straightforward, it is not irrelevant.
Apart from the header being the first thing that hiring managers see and pay attention to, it also
provides enough information to tell hiring managers whether or not to go on reading the rest of your
cover letter. This is because you also have to include your academic and professional credentials in
addition to your full name. From here, a hiring manager can run a quick mental screening process to
determine whether or not you are qualified for the role. This is the same as hiring managers using
software to screen your
for relevant keywords.
The HR professionals we interviewed had a lot to say about the header sections of paralegal cover
letters. We have summarized some of the tips from these professionals as follows:
- Before anything else, write your name in full:
An effective paralegal cover letter must begin with your full name. In other words, you cannot
use nicknames alone or as part of the name on your cover letter. Such actions would disqualify
you. Instead, write your full name as you have it on your ID card. You may decide to write your
name in block form or use a slightly larger font than the rest of your cover letter so that
hiring managers can see it clearly.
- Include at least 3 relevant academic and professional credentials alongside your full name
: In addition to your full name, you should also include at least 3 credentials to demonstrate
your qualifications as a paralegal. Our HR professionals recommend at least 1 academic
credential and at least 2 professional credentials. So, you can write the abbreviated titles of
your most recent academic degree, as well as those of your most recent professional
certifications. Depending on the requirements of the job, the academic titles of your academic
degrees can be LL.B., or LL.D., or LL.M., while the titles for your professional certifications
could be CP and APC.
- Use your most recent residential location: It is generally preferred to use
residential addresses in cover letters. Although you can also
use a work address, the paralegal career is one that requires a lot of physical movement
(travel). As a result, the hiring managers for the paralegal job will most likely be interested
in where you reside and could disqualify you on that basis alone. So, even before crafting a
cover letter or adapting a
paralegal resume example, first check if there are considerations for geographical address.
Nevertheless, you have to include your most recent residential location in the header section
of your paralegal cover letter.
Parker Hunter, LL.M., CP, APC
October 14, 2022
Normally, the greeting section is a total of 5
words max, although our HR professionals recommend using no more than 3 words. Because of general
similarity with formal letters, the cover letter greeting can take the usual form of ‘Dear Sir’ or
‘Dear Madam.’ However, you have to do a lot of research and thinking before settling on the greeting
you will use.
On account of the English writing format with paragraph alignments, the cover letter greeting stands
out. This means that the hiring manager will see it, no matter how quickly they skim through the
cover letters in front of them. This means that you cannot be careless with the address you use.
Instead, you have to adhere to the fixed structure of modern cover letters, as well as the tips
offered by our professional HR team.
Simply put, your greeting can consist of 2 words with which you address the recruitment manager.
Think of the header section of your cover letter as the ‘I’ part and this greeting section as the
‘you’ part, referring to the hiring manager. The way you address them, either as ‘Dear’ something or
a lot. So, here are the tips from our HR professionals to point you in the right direction:
- Address the hiring manager by their name: Although there are many usable
options for the greeting section, there is none as effective as
naming the hiring manager. Much like every other kind of proposal, you stand a better chance of
attracting and holding the recruitment specialist’s attention when you use their name. This
decision has multiple effects. One, it directly compels the hiring manager to look at your cover
letter even if they initially intended to skim through. Secondly, it tells them that you took
the time to find their name, even if it was included in the job advert. As such, you are
effectively proving that you have research skills, which are essential for a successful
- Use ‘Dear Hiring Manager’ in the absence of their name : This should be your
default option when you’re unable to find their name. Also, considering
that there could be multiple hiring managers belonging to a job recruitment firm, finding the
name of the individual that would read your cover letter might be difficult, if not impossible.
In such instances, you can use ‘Dear Hiring Manager.’ This address is formal and appropriate, as
well as consistent with modern cover letter standards.
The Introduction section of your paralegal cover
letter is another very important aspect to pay close attention to. This section coincides with the
modern Resume Summary section in that it does not only introduce you to the hiring manager but also
points out how you qualify for the advertised role. As a result, the section effectively summarizes
the rest of your cover letter while providing the hiring manager with the most necessary information
about you, your work, and your aspirations for the advertised position.
Generally, the modern cover letter introduction contains about 4 to 5 sentences with each sentence
describing you with reference to the requirements of the advertised position. For your paralegal
cover letter, you could introduce yourself and make a note of your academic and professional
qualifications. Then you can cite examples of places you have worked at and what you accomplished
there. Lastly, you can directly tie what you have presented so far with the requirements of the
position. This is the same format as the rest of your cover letter, but you can only present it in a
According to our HR professionals, here are some of the most useful tips for customizing the
introduction section of the modern cover letter for a paralegal job position:
- Write around the requirements of the advertised position:
Although your paralegal cover letter introduction
is allowed to reach 5 sentences, each of these sentences must be linked to the requirements of
the paralegal position you are applying for. This means that you have to research and focus on
what the hiring managers are interested in, and use them. Use the same verbs and expressions and
the same keywords as in the job posting. This also means that you cannot use templates wholesale
since different paralegal job positions have different keywords and mixing them would only lead
to your disqualification.
- Make a note of your age and years of experience:: A paralegal position is
typically age-sensitive. Because of the difference between this career
and that of an attorney, a convincing paralegal cover letter would typically emphasize the age
of the applicant. The same goes for years of experience, although the restrictions here are
fairly relaxed. If age is not mentioned as a requirement but you are less than 35, you can still
mention your age. The same goes for the number of years you have worked as a paralegal.
- Emphasize your aptitude and past employment:Your paralegal cover letter
introduction must also include evidence that you are smart,
meticulous, flexible, and willing to go the extra mile in your role. It should also contain
information regarding 1 or 2 places where you worked and what you accomplished there. Once
again, these must all be written around the job requirements.
As a bonus, you should close your paralegal cover letter introduction with a strong emphasis on the
fact that you are qualified on the basis of the information presented thus far. Everything that
comes after, therefore, should reinforce what your introduction already claims.
My name is Parker Hunter, an accomplished paralegal with a Master of Laws (LL.M.) degree in
Medical Law, CP and APC certifications from NALA, and ACP from PMI, with 5 years of paralegal
experience. I found the advertisement for a vacant paralegal position at your hospital on
Indeed.com. I have worked with some of the best legal institutions in the state of California,
including Dean-Moore in Beverly Hills and the Superior Court of California in Riverside County.
I have effective communication skills, proficiency in the use of project management techniques,
and a passion for healthcare law. With these qualifications, abilities and experience, I am
perfect for the role advertised in your organization.
The Middle Paragraphs
Maintain a formal tone throughout the cover letter.
The middle paragraphs may serve as the 4th section of your paralegal cover letter, but they take up
the most words. Another way to look at this is that at least half of what the hiring manager will
see once they take up your cover letter is in the middle paragraphs. Consequently, the information
presented here may be the deciding factor for your qualification or disqualification.
Don’t beg the hiring manager to consider you.
This section generally contains information about your academic and professional certifications,
skills and abilities, professional experience, and achievements from past paralegal positions.
According to our HR professionals, the following tips will help you craft effective middle
- Focus on job requirements: As you might have already realized, adhering
to the advertised job requirements is the key to
developing an effective cover letter. If you can write the middle paragraphs around the
advertised job description and the requirements for qualified applicants, hiring managers would
be more than willing to select you for the later stages of the job recruitment process.
- Use bullet points: Hiring managers generally spend a total of 15 seconds
to skim through a cover
letter. When you use bullet points to show your educational qualifications, professional
certifications, and even your professional experience, hiring managers can learn more about you
than when you use fixed paragraphs.
- Mention feedback on accomplishments from past positions if you have any: This
will show the hiring manager that you are a problem-solver and diligent enough to focus on
results and the big picture of paralegal positions.
According to the job advert, you want a paralegal with at least a Bachelor’s degree in Law, 2
years of experience, and communication as well as project management skills. I obtained my LL.M.
in Medical Law from the USC Gould School of Law, California, in 2016, and have been practicing
ever since. Specifically, I have worked with multiple law-related institutions where I was able
- Effectively analyze contracts and legal issues in an orderly fashion,
- Manage multiple projects with tight deadlines,
- Adapt technological innovation to enhance attorney-client communication systems,
- Use agile project management techniques to boost client feedback system,
- And organize classes for paralegals to increase their proficiency with Microsoft
applications, to name a few.
Conclusion and Closing Section
In sales and marketing, the closing
section of a presentation is even more important than the opening. The same is partly true of modern
cover letters. You are not allowed to have a flawed or weak closing section. After all, after the
first line of your introduction section, there is no other section that hiring managers typically
pay attention to as the closing section. In other words, it matters how you end the cover
While concluding and closing your paralegal cover letter, you have to be assertive. Make sure to tie
the information you have presented in the cover letter to the job requirements. Ask for feedback and
provide an email address through which the hiring manager can reach you. Then close with ‘Thank
My academic and professional qualifications, experience, and skillset qualify me for the
advertised paralegal role in your organization. So, reach out to me at
to discuss the terms of employment or for any questions you have. I will be expecting feedback on
my application. Thank you.
You can read more about cover letter formatting and other related topics from the
A paralegal cover letter is not difficult to develop. As
long as you write around the requirements of the position and the job description, you can craft a
winning cover letter, convince hiring managers of your worth and suitability, and get the paralegal
position of your dreams.
Alex Miller is a writer, editor, and HR manager who specializes in education and counseling. He was born in Slovenia and moved to the USA as a teen. Alex loves to travel and explore old towns. He is passionate about psychology, literature, and good food.