Another good question, and the answer may vary from individual to individual. First, law school is expensive — very expensive. Law school graduates incur substantial debt, usually extending into six figures ($100,000+). Although attorneys have the potential to make a lot of money, most new attorneys start at modest salaries; some law school graduates have little, if any, money left over after paying their monthly student loan bills. Second, being an attorney is stressful and is accompanied by the potential of liability. A business client may lose millions of dollars if a civil case is lost, or a criminal defense client may be placed on death row if a criminal case is lost. Being a paralegal offers the best of both worlds: although a paralegal is not allowed to practice law, a paralegal nevertheless gets to perform many of the tasks done by attorneys — without much of the stress — and receives a respectful salary in the process.
Why would a person want to be a paralegal rather than an attorney?