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Paralegal Trade Schools

Since paralegals and legal assistants help conduct legal research on relevant laws and regulations, draft documents, organize and maintain files, investigate facts of a case, take notes in trial and much more, it's clear that they play a vital role in the legal process. There are various areas a paralegal may specialize in, such as litigation and corporate law. Corporate paralegals, for example, help lawyers prepare everything from employee contracts to shareholder agreements. Paralegal school, or a program in paralegal studies at a vocational school or technical school, may be an important step in entering this sustainable, growing field.

Paralegal Legal Assistant

Paralegal specializations

The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS.gov) lists several specializations paralegals can enter, going more in-depth on a few, such as:

  • Litigation -- conduct research for lawyers, maintain client documents and organize and retrieve evidence for use in trials and depositions.
  • Personal injury
  • Employee benefits
  • Intellectual property
  • Corporate -- help lawyers prepare everything from employee contracts to stock-option plans and review and monitor government regulations.

Paralegal certifications and degrees

Most paralegals and legal assistants, according to the BLS, have an associate degree in paralegal studies or a bachelor's degree in another field paired with a certificate in paralegal studies (since very few schools offer a bachelor's or master's in paralegal studies). Sometimes people with a bachelor's degree and no legal experience or education may be hired and then trained on the job.

You may expect to take courses in legal research and the legal applications of computers in associate's and bachelor's degree programs, the BLS states, and receive intensive paralegal training in certificate programs (which sometimes only take a few months to complete). Certificate programs are often geared to people who already hold college degrees in something else.

Certifications aren't required by most employers, according to the BLS, but could give a job applicant an edge sometimes in landing a job. Certifications usually consist of an exam. The National Association of Legal Assistants (NALA) offers Certified Paralegal credentialing and continuing education opportunities.

Paralegal salary and career outlook

A paralegal career definitely has the potential to be sustainable. According to the BLS, the national mean annual wage of paralegals and legal assistants in the United States as of May 2013 was $51,170, with the lowest-paid 10 percent earning an annual wage of $29,740 and the highest-paid 10 percent earning an annual wage of $76,960.

Employment prospects are looking good for paralegals, according to the BLS. Employment of paralegals and legal assistants is expected to grow by 17 percent between 2012 and 2022, which is faster than the average of all occupations. And the states with the highest expected growth, percentage-wise, between 2012 and 2022, according to Projections Central, are:

  • Tennessee: 48.7 percent
  • Washington: 32.6 percent
  • Florida: 32.1 percent
  • Utah: 30.9 percent
  • Colorado: 29.9 percent

The paralegal field is one with many specializations, each of which the data suggests is sustainable and growing. After heading off to college, technical school or vocational school and earning a degree or certificate in paralegal studies, you can begin applying to join this vital profession.

Sources:

Certification, National Association of Legal Assistants, Accessed September 25, 2014, http://www.nala.org/Certification.aspx

Long Term Occupational Projections, Projections Central, paralegal and legal assistants, 2012-2022, https://www.projectionscentral.com/Projections/LongTerm

Paralegal and legal assistant, Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2014-15 edition, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/legal/paralegals-and-legal-assistants.htm

Paralegal and legal assistants, Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Employment Statistics, May 2013, http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes232011.htm

Paralegal Trade Schools
 
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At Fortis Institute, you may get the skills and training you need to prepare for a career. * Programs vary by location * Please contact each individual campus for accreditation information Please call on  844-252-4552 to talk to a respresentative.

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Dayton: 555 E. Alex-Bell Road Dayton, OH 45459

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Earn Your Diploma from Home!

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Advance your career with our affordable, self-paced, career-focused distance education programs.

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Kaplan University is focused on recognizing the achievements of military and veteran students and offers the flexibility of an online education.

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Get a quality technical education and prepare for a better job at TCI College of Technology in New York City.

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Campus Locations :

New York: 320 West 31st St. New York, NY 10001

As a student at South University, you will have the opportunity to learn from accomplished faculty members who have real-world experience in the subjects that they teach. Our small class sizes allow you to receive personalized attention from instructors, and the encouragement to recognize your goals for the future and the means to achieve them.

Programs : Paralegal Studies (AS), Legal Studies (BS), and more.

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Cleveland: 4743 Richmond Road Cleveland, OH 44128

High Point: 3975 Premier Center Drive High Point, NC 27265

Columbia: 9 Science Court Columbia, SC 29203

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Novi: 41555 Twelve Mile Road Novi, MI 48377

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Glen Allen: 2200 Old Brick Rd. Glen Allen, VA 23060

Austin: 7700 W Parmer Ln, Building A, Suite A100 Austin, TX 78729

With more than 300 online and residential areas of study, Liberty offers programs from the certificate to doctoral level.

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Take a new step in your education with Brandman University. We offer 87 different certificate, associate, bachelor's, or master's programs in a wide variety of fields.

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Salida: 5222 Pirrone Court Salida, CA 95368

Ontario: 3990 Concours Suite 100 Ontario, CA 91764

Yuba City: 1275 Tharp Rd Suite B Yuba City, CA 95993

Santa Maria: 1300 E. Cypress Street Building A1 Santa Maria, CA 93454

Victorville: 13911 Park Ave Suite 100 Victorville, CA 92392

For over 35 years, Keiser University has provided student-centered, quality career education.

Programs : Paralegal Studies, AA (Online Only), and more.

Campus Locations : Online

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