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Is it Legal to Moonlight as a Research Paper Writer?

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I’ve been a member of the starving-student club for way too long. I take classes all day and wait tables at a local restaurant in the evenings. But somehow, it just never seems to be enough! I’m not asking for a lot. I would just love to have the extra dough to spring for a nice dinner for my girlfriend and me once in a while! Anyway, I’ve always been pretty decent at writing papers and I’ve been thinking about moonlighting as a research paper writer. Several of my friends seem to be doing pretty well with the gig. But I’d like to ask the experts to weigh in. Is writing papers for other students a legal way to make a buck?

We get it. We’ve all been members of the “starving-student” club at one time or another. And the simple answer to your question is yes, writing papers for other people for money is perfectly legal. Writing research or other academic papers falls under the same category as ghostwriting, which almost all authors, speakers, and writers use at some point in their careers. It’s especially prominent in the blogging and self-help niches. And there is no law anywhere in the world stating that ghostwriting is an illegal service.

However, we do understand the legal and ethical questions this type of issue might raise for you. But the reason most people question the ethics of using a research paper writing service is because they believe it to be plagiarism. This is simply not true. Although ghostwriting is still somewhat of a gray area for some people, the law does not implicate people who participate in it as long as both parties agree. For this reason, it is always a good idea to get your agreements in writing. Make sure your clients know that you will never reveal yourself as the source and ask that they also keep the transaction confidential.

And it’s important not to judge the people who hire out these services as well. Students hire academic writers for many reasons, and it’s not usually that they are lazy or incompetent. In fact, if their grades are above average, they’ve undoubtedly put in most of that work themselves. Paying for a great research paper may help them keep their grades up in times of trouble, but they are still responsible for test scores and other assignments. Perhaps they are mentally exhausted from the strain of their achievements. And maybe their choices at the moment are either to hire an academic writer or fail miserably. And because mental fatigue can lead to burnout and assorted health risks, it’s sometimes well-advised to ask for help. Or maybe they are working and attending school like you, but have other factors that make it difficult to get this assignment done, such as a sick child or family obligations. If you understand the reasons people use the service, it can help make the implications of offering it much clearer.

But if you are still worried about the ethical implications of writing academic material for other students, you can rest assured that the value of such services lies in their assistance with research. In other words, these papers are intended to give students the foundation they need to write their own papers with confidence. Many students suffer from severe performance anxiety and simply need the help of a writer to give them guidelines for their assignments. They can be a roadmap showing them the direction to take, but the papers they turn in should be modified to match their own voices and their own professors’ requirements.


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