Matthew Porter
Matthew Porter
Director: London Private Practice: Interim and Paralegals

Articles From the Team

Becoming a document review lawyer in 2019

BCL Legal is one of the leading providers of document review lawyers and paralegals operating in the City of London. We supply to a range of clients, including Magic Circle firms, Big Four accountancy firms, international firms and boutique firms and companies.

Document review positions are financially lucrative and also provide the reviewer with frequent ‘bursts’ of work; many of the review lawyers we place decide to leave their permanent role in order to pursue other ventures. A review role, or series of roles, can provide well-paid work as well as flexibility.

All of our document review roles are paid by the hour and typically they run from a couple of weeks to several months, however, we have some reviewers who have been in their role for several years!

So, how do you secure a document review role?

Firstly, your availability is key

Most roles are turned around very quickly and it's not uncommon for a reviewer to commence a role within a day or two of being our briefing them. For other clients, we may need to carry out more extensive background screening, however, this extends the turnaround time by just a week to 10 days. So, being available at short notice (with no planned holidays) will ensure you're a highly desired candidate.

Practice preferences

Litigation lawyers are usually the preferred choice, however, many transactional lawyers have secured document review roles. If you're a transactional lawyer, I'd suggest emphasising any litigation experience you may have gained, and ensure this is visible on your CV.

On that note, how do you make your CV stand out?

Make your CV stand out by stating any review roles you've already undertaken (even if these were for a few days). Clearly state any review platforms you've used e.g. Relativity, Ringtail etc.

Language skills

We place hundreds of lawyers into foreign language review roles, so again, state your level of competence in your CV. It's important to note that you'll be utilising your language skills in a reading capacity so be cautious not to state you're fluent in a language if you only speak it. Many firms will test your language skills.

Last but not least, be decisive

We want to fill our projects with the best talent out there - because of this, we reach out to the most suitable candidates. However, given the turnaround time of the projects, and with the number of candidates on the market, we need candidates to make a decision on a role very quickly. Put simply, candidates don't have the time to research the firm or "see if you have any contacts there." As the agency representing you, we have lots of compliance checks to run behind the scenes so time is critical.

If you're a lawyer or paralegal seeking your first or next document review role, please get in touch.

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We’re a Sunday Times Best Small Company to Work For: 2016, 2017, 2018