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Can You Get an Online Paralegal Degree?

Can You Get an Online Paralegal Degree?

What is an Online Paralegal Degree?

A paralegal degree is one option future paralegals have to obtain the education required to work in the profession. An online paralegal degree offers a prospective paralegal the ability to learn how to write legal briefs, research lengthy court documents and how to properly conduct interviews with potential clients or witnesses. 
These functions, which are required to assume the role as a paralegal and fulfill the required responsibilities the job demands, can be obtained through various online paralegal degree programs.
The American Bar Association has approved paralegal education programs and online paralegal degree programs to assist students and prospective paralegals in finding quality paralegal education. The America Bar Association; however, has prohibited obtaining a paralegal degree solely through use of online paralegal degree programs. 
That being said, numerous programs offer one or more required paralegal certificate classes online and a few schools throughout the nation will offer completion through distance learning through the use of webcam or television technology. 
Rules Regarding an Online Paralegal Degree:

According to the American bar Association for Paralegal Education training, paralegal degree programs are typically designed for students who already earned a Bachelor’s or Associate’s degree. The American Bar Association implemented various guidelines in 2008, which formally addressed online components to paralegal degree programs. To meet these ABA requirements, institutions now offer and require students to complete the equivalent of ten semester credits in a traditional classroom environments; classes offered online must in turn, meet certain requirements, instituted by the particular university in accordance with the ABA’s requirements.  
How do I obtain an Online Paralegal Degree?
The American Bar Association maintains a list of all approved paralegal programs in the United States; the list, which also includes an additional 148 paralegal certification programs, may be found on the ABA’s website.
Various institutions throughout the United States offer online paralegal degree programs as components of the traditional, classroom paralegal certification offerings. For example, the University of California at Irvine states that at least half of its course requirements, 15 units, must be completed in a traditional setting to earn a paralegal degree. 
That being said, other institutions, such as the Center for Advanced Legal Studies, will allow students to complete their paralegal degree in ten months through use of its Online Interactive Instruction System.  Classes in this setting will use live teaching via a webcam; students in these online programs will interact with instructors and other students in satellite locations. 
As a result of the rules and requirements delivered by the ABA, an online paralegal degree may only be earned if the student satisfies both his or her online degree requirements and his or her traditional classroom requirements. The online paralegal degree, is thus a hybrid of sorts; students must partake in both the traditional classroom aspect and the webcam portion to earn an online paralegal degree.

Start Your Legal Career as a Legal Assistant

Start Your Legal Career as a Legal Assistant

What is a Legal Assistant?
A legal assistant is a term used to describe an individual who assists legal professionals, most commonly qualified lawyers, in their day to day work. In the United States, legal assistants are not authorized by a government body or governmental agency to offer legal services nor are they subject to the government or court sanctioned rules of conduct. 
Instead a legal assistant is, in essence, a lawyer’s assistant; a legal assistant will work under the direct supervision of their coordinating legal professional; the legal assistant will provide administrative assistance to streamline the attorney’s day-to-day work. 
In the United States, a legal assistant cannot set fees, give legal advice, appear as counsel of record in court or sign pleadings (and other legal or court documents) in a representative fashion. If a legal assistant attempts to fulfill any of these roles, which are distinctly reserved for an attorney or certified legal professional, they will be in direct violation of the unauthorized practice of law statutes that are present in the majority of states in America. 


What does a Legal Assistant do?
Legal assistants are responsible for a wide range of tasks within a legal spectrum outside of the practice of law, the delivery of legal advice, and the representation of clientele. The position of a legal assistant will require the individual to work in tandem with attorneys in order to provide the most comprehensive service to their respective clientele.

All legal assistants aid their respective attorney or legal professional in their day to day responsibilities; in essence, the legal assistant will streamline his or her attorney’s work to provide an efficient legal service to the coordinating clientele. Legal assistants may assist, research, and participate in legal processes and procedures; however, they are not permitted to provide legal advice. 
A legal assistant may provide his or her coordinating attorney or legal professional with case research; this fundamental duty of a legal assistant requires the individual to research pertinent laws or legal stipulations regarding the underlying legal case. In this capacity, the legal assistant accesses case files or law libraries to provide his or her coordinating attorney with all the necessary facts to initiate a legal argument. 
In addition, a legal assistant will interview clients to decide which cases are worth pursuing. A legal assistant will also provide a lawyer or legal professional with various administrative duties, such as scheduling appointments, organizing the attorney’s schedule or setting-up meetings with the attorney. As a result of these duties, it can be stated that without the aid of a legal assistant, a lawyer or legal professional would be disheveled and would not be able to properly provide legal aid to their respective client base. 

Find an Online Paralegal Degree Programs

Find an Online Paralegal Degree Programs

What is a Paralegal?

Paralegals, in essence, are legal assistants. These individuals are responsible for a wide range of tasks within a legal spectrum outside of the practice of law, the delivery of legal advice, and the representation of clientele. A Paralegal will work in tandem with attorneys, legal professionals or their representing law firms to provide the most comprehensive service to their respective clientele. 
The basic paralegal job description entails a variety of duties and responsibilities that are commonly linked to the day to day responsibilities of an attorney or legal professional; a paralegal provide basic duties to streamline an attorney’s work.  Paralegals may assist, research, and participate in legal processes and procedures; however, they are not permitted to provide legal advice. 
Typically, a paralegal may provide the following duties: provide case work and legal research for their respective law firm or legal professional, interview potential clients to gauge which legal endeavors are worth pursuing, conducting thorough reviews of case studies and legal precedents for their respective legal professionals, accessing law libraries to reveal pertinent legal matters, organize a lawyer’s schedule to streamline their business and provide information to respective clients. 
In a more specific sense, a paralegal may be responsible for the collection, arrangement, and organization of legal forms and documents with regard to a court case; individual clients may be required to fulfill a variety of paper work, claims, forms, text, and statutes with regard to any of all claims or defenses. A paralegal can authenticate the necessary documentation required, as well as the processing of the satisfied forms.
What are Online Paralegal Degree Programs?

Online paralegal degree programs refer to interactive coursework offered by various institutions, such as universities or specialized legal schools, throughout the United States.  An individual wishing to become a paralegal, when accessing online paralegal degree programs, will  learn how to write legal briefs, research lengthy court documents and how to properly conduct interviews with potential clients or witnesses. 
The American bar Association and Online Paralegal Degree Programs:
The American Bar Association has approved online paralegal degree programs to assist students and prospective paralegals in finding quality paralegal education. The America Bar Association; however, has prohibited obtaining a paralegal degree solely through use of online paralegal degree programs. That being said, numerous programs offer one or more required paralegal certificate classes online and a few schools throughout the nation will offer completion through distance learning through the use of webcam or television technology. 
The American Bar Association implemented various guidelines in 2008, which formally addressed online components to paralegal degree programs. To meet these ABA requirements, institutions now offer and require students to complete the equivalent of ten semester credits in a traditional classroom environments; classes offered online must in turn, meet certain requirements, instituted by the particular university in accordance with the ABA’s requirements.  

Get Your Paralegal Certification Now!

Get Your Paralegal Certification Now!

What is a Paralegal?
A paralegal, in the majority of jurisdictions, is a term used to describe an individual who assists legal professionals, most commonly qualified lawyers, in their day to day legal work. In the United States, paralegals are not authorized by a government body or governmental agency to offer legal services nor are they subject to the government or court sanctioned rules of conduct. 
In the United States a paralegal is, in essence, a lawyer’s assistant; a paralegal works under the direct supervision of their coordinating legal professional; the paralegal will provide administrative assistance to streamline the attorney’s day-to-day work. 
In the United States, a paralegal cannot set fees, give legal advice, appear as counsel of record in court or sign pleadings (and other legal or court documents) in a representative fashion. If a paralegal attempts to fulfill any of these roles, which are distinctly reserved for an attorney, they will be in direct violation of the unauthorized practice of law statutes that are present in the majority of states in America. 
That being said, paralegals are found in all areas of law within the United States; a paralegal can aid a lawyer working in a criminal trial, the family court of law, real estate, estate planning, government positions or civil matters. 
Paralegal Certification: How do I become a Paralegal?
The American Bar Association defines paralegal certification as a “formal process by which a non-governmental agency or association grants recognition to an individual who has met certain predetermined qualifications specified by that agency or association.” Paralegal certification typically involves passing a certified examination established by the sponsoring organization and meeting various educational and experiential requirements. 
Currently, paralegal certification is a voluntary procedure; there exists no mandatory examination for legal assistants to assume such roles in the United States. That being said, paralegal certification is a subject of considerable interest among the various paralegal organizations, state legislatures and state bar associations. 
Paralegal certification demonstrates to employers, such as government agencies or law firms, a commitment to the profession and a mastery of a distinct skill set and knowledge to complete the various tasks required in the field. These skills and knowledge are tested in various paralegal certification examinations; such testing will inspect an individual’s knowledge over legal procedure, writing skills, communication abilities, ethics, as well as research abilities. 
The majority of paralegals, in the United States, will obtain professional designations once they have gained a few years’ experience in the legal field. As stated before, certification is not a prerequisite for paralegal employment; however, it will enhance the individual’s professional credibility, income potential and employment prospects. 
Paralegal certification may incorporate a variety of examinations, issued by legal organizations throughout the United States. For instance, the National Association of Legal Assistants is a sponsoring agency which issues certification examinations. To become eligible for paralegal certification within the National Association of Legal Assistants an individual must graduate from a legal assistant program that is approved by the American bar Association, obtain a bachelor’s degree in any field plus obtain one year’s experience as a legal assistant. 
The examination itself is a two-day comprehensive test based on federal law and procedure; the primary subject areas of this particular paralegal certification test are Ethics, Legal Research, Communications, Interviewing Techniques, Human Relations, Legal Terminology and Judgment & Analytical Ability. 

Paralegal Courses

Paralegal Courses

What does a Paralegal Do?

Paralegals are legal assistants who are responsible for a wide range of tasks within a legal spectrum outside of the practice of law, the delivery of legal advice, and the representation of clientele. A Paralegal will work in tandem with attorneys or legal professionals in order to provide the most comprehensive service to their respective clientele. The basic paralegal job description entails a variety of duties and responsibilities that are commonly linked to the day to day responsibilities of an attorney or legal professional; a paralegal job description will entail basic duties to streamline an attorney’s work.  Paralegals may assist, research, and participate in legal processes and procedures; however, they are not permitted to provide legal advice. 

What are Paralegal Courses?
Although there are no mandatory educational or certification-based requirements to become a paralegal, individuals interested in the occupation are recommended to enroll in various paralegal courses to bolster their opportunities of landing job, to increase their ability to fulfill their responsibilities, and to increase their pay throughout their career. An effective way to educate oneself in regards to paralegal work is to enroll in available paralegal courses. 
These courses, which are offered at the university level, are also made available online for those individuals who have already obtained a bachelor’s degree or high school diploma with a focus in something other than law. 
These paralegal courses will teach a candidate how to succeed as a paralegal. That being said, there are numerous types of paralegal courses an individual can enroll in; all paralegal courses focus on specific or general functions of the paralegal. Taking the time to find paralegal courses that provide particular benefits to the candidate’s specific desires will increase the individual’s specific skill set and in turn, increase their ability to land a high-paying paralegal job. 
Paralegal courses will provide an individual with the necessary experience and instruction to carry-out the specific roles that a paralegal is responsible for. In addition to experience, paralegal courses may provide an individual with certification. 
Again, certification is not required to land a job as a paralegal; however, the presence of a paralegal certificate will increase the probability of obtaining a paralegal job and increase the individual’s salary when employed. Certification paralegal courses are also effective because they are quick; an individual can obtain paralegal certification by completing online paralegal courses. 
If the applicant has more time available they may partake in paralegal courses through pursuing an associate’s degree. These types of paralegal courses can be completed in less than two years and are an effective stepping stone to a bachelor’s degree program. Furthermore, an individual can directly enter the workforce as a paralegal by obtaining an associate’s degree. 
Another example of paralegal courses is found at accredited universities who offer paralegal courses; these bachelor’s degree programs are available to those individuals who would like to become a paralegal right out of college or would like to pursue a graduate paralegal degree. If the candidate decides to take these paralegal courses online they can successfully obtain a paralegal degree in three years, although four years is the more generic timeframe. 

Be a Competitive Candidate with a Paralegal Degree

Be a Competitive Candidate with a Paralegal DegreeWhat is a Paralegal Degree?

Although certification is not required to obtain a paralegal job, it is highly recommended as a result of the competition found in the industry. In addition, the obtainment of a paralegal degree will establish the candidate’s commitment to the particular profession. 
A paralegal degree signifies that the respective individual is well-versed in the various roles required of a paralegal; a paralegal degree denotes that the individual in possession is able to conduct thorough legal research, write formal legal briefs or reports, organize a lawyer’s day to day activities and interview clients or witnesses with a pertinent focus on the subject matter of the underlying legal matter. 
As a result of this denotation, a paralegal degree will inform a prospective employer as to the candidate’s particular skill-set; in a general sense, those who obtain paralegal degrees have a far better chance of landing a job as a paralegal than those who are not in possession.

Paralegal degrees do not technically signify certification; however, several legal associations will offer certification programs, such as the National Association of Legal Assistants, the national Association for Legal Professionals, the American Alliance of Paralegals and the National Federation of Paralegal Associations.

How do I obtain a Paralegal Degree?

If you are interested in pursuing a career as a paralegal you should obtain a paralegal degree or certificate. The ability to obtain a paralegal degree or certificate will portray to respective clients or legal professionals that you possess the necessary skill set to satisfy the many responsibilities required of the job. As a certified paralegal, you will be required to interview clients, organize schedules and information, and prepare comprehensive reports regarding the legal matters at hand, as well as, constructing motions, complaints, letters and pleadings. 

To obtain a paralegal degree you must possess excellent verbal, written and analytical skills. Depending on your targeted employer, you will most likely need to obtain an associate’s degree with a focus on paralegal studies. The majority of associate degree programs take roughly 7 months to complete. 

To obtain a paralegal degree you must explore all available paralegal certificate programs; there are a number of reputable institutions that will offer both online and offline programs in the United States. In addition to accredited universities, many local community colleges will offer both paralegal degree programs and certification courses. 

When evaluating which paralegal program to pursue, you should consider the reputation of the institution, the price needed to obtain the paralegal degree and the job placement success rate attached to the school and respective program. 

When you choose your paralegal degree program you should evaluate the curriculum and ensure that is accredited by the American Bar Association as well as other reputable agencies. The majority of legitimate paralegal degree programs will require 30 credits and 300 hours of study with a grade of “C” or above to earn a paralegal degree or certificate. 

Once you have ensured the reputability, you must apply to the program; in most instances, the application procedure will entail filling out an online application, sending recommendation letters and completing a personal statement or written examination.

What Does a Paralegal Do?

What Does a Paralegal Do?

What is a Paralegal?

Paralegals, in essence, are legal assistants who are responsible for a wide range of tasks within a legal spectrum outside of the practice of law, the delivery of legal advice, and the representation of clientele. A Paralegal will work in tandem with attorneys in order to provide the most comprehensive service to their respective clientele. 
The basic paralegal job description entails a variety of duties and responsibilities that are commonly linked to the day to day responsibilities of an attorney or legal professional; a paralegal job description will entail basic duties to streamline an attorney’s work.  Paralegals may assist, research, and participate in legal processes and procedures; however, they are not permitted to provide legal advice. Typically, a paralegal may provide the following duties:
Legal research: A large portion of the paralegal job description will entail providing their respective attorney or legal professional with pertinent legal research. In a given legal matter, Within the realm of the legal spectrums, a large part of case review and preparation may be conducted outside of the courtroom; this type of legal work may result in a vast amount of time being spent researching and studying a variety of legal cases. 
Legal case studies may depend on the investigation of case details pertinent to a specific case with regard to the clientele represented by an attorney, in addition to the investigation of past case details sharing similarities with cases undertaken for representation.
Compilation of legal documents or forms: A paralegal job description will typically entail the collection, arrangement, and organization of legal forms and documents with regard to a court case; individual clients may be required to fulfill a variety of paper work, claims, forms, text, and statutes with regard to any of all claims or defenses. A paralegal can authenticate the necessary documentation required, as well as the processing of the satisfied forms.
Use of Law Libraries: Law Libraries – in addition to legal resources – are permitted to be used by paralegals. Upon the formulation of preparation of a court case, a paralegal may be asked to undertake research endeavors with regard to the compilation of information that can be used in the discovery or 
presentation of evidence and case details.

How do I become a Paralegal?

The role of a paralegal is defined as one of the many Legal Jobs that allows an individual to participate in certain legal matters in lieu of acting in court hearings, providing legal advice, establishing fee and payment rates, and authorizing legal documentation. Paralegals – or legal assistants – are an example of Legal Jobs that may or may not require certification depending on the position and employment requirement(s). 
Paralegal positions that are undertaken by these individuals within the legal profession may vary in their respective educational requirements, certification, and training mandatory to obtain them. In certain cases, an individual may obtain an entry-level legal paralegal job that requires a minimal amount of secondary education and training – yet, in other cases, paralegal positions may exist in which a vast amount of training – in addition to the attainment of paralegal certification – is required

A Guide to Paralegal Salaries

A Guide to Paralegal Salaries

What does a Paralegal do?
In the majority of jurisdictions, a paralegal acts as a legal assistant to a qualified lawyer or legal professional. As the assistant, the paralegal is responsible for a wide range of tasks within a legal spectrum outside of the practice of law, the delivery of legal advice, and the representation of clientele. A Paralegal will work in tandem with attorneys, to provide the most comprehensive service to their respective clientele. 
The basic paralegal responsibilities entail a variety of duties that are commonly linked to the day to day responsibilities of an attorney or legal professional; a paralegal provide their respective attorney or legal professional with basic duties to streamline an attorney’s work.  Paralegals may assist research and participate in legal processes and procedures; however, they are not permitted to provide any sort of legal advice. 
Typically, a paralegal may provide the following duties: provide case work and legal research for their respective law firm or legal professional, interview potential clients to gauge which legal endeavors are worth pursuing, conduct thorough reviews of case studies and legal precedents for their respective legal professionals, accessing law libraries to reveal pertinent legal matters, organize a lawyer’s schedule to streamline their business and provide information to clients regarding their respective case . 
In a more specific sense, a paralegal is responsible for the collection, arrangement, and organization of legal forms and documents with regard to a court case; a paralegal may be required to fulfill a variety of paper work, claims, forms, text, and statutes with regard to any of all claims or defenses. Furthermore, a paralegal can authenticate the necessary documentation required, as well as the processing of the satisfied forms for their respected lawyer, legal professional or law firm.

Paralegal Salaries:

The majority of paralegals–approximately 70%–work in law firms. A paralegal, in any setting, will perform many duties at a much lower salary then the attorneys they work for. That being said, paralegal salaries are still relatively high; paralegal salaries are especially high considering there are no official requirements to assume the role. 
Paralegal salaries will differentiate based on the location of the law firm as well as the particular law office in which the paralegal works. In most instances, paralegal salaries are higher in more concentrated areas, such as New York or California, when compared to those paralegal salaries in less-densely populated areas such as the Great Plains or Deep South. 
Furthermore, paralegal salaries will vary by industry; for example, a paralegal working for a state government will obtain a different paralegal salary than an individual working for a private law firm. The below table will list the average paralegal salaries for various industries; additionally the below table will provide a range for the highest and lowest paralegal salaries:
Lowest Paralegal Salaries= $27,450-$31,500 per year
Average Paralegal Salaries=$43,040-$45,500 per year
Highest Paralegal Salaries=$67,540-$75,000 per year
Paralegal Salaries for individuals who work for the Federal Government: $56,080 per year
Paralegal Salaries for individuals who work for a Local Government: $42,170 per year
Paralegal Salaries who work for Local Services Industry: $41,460 per year
Paralegal Salaries who work for a State Government: $38,020 per year

What You Must Know About Paralegal Salary

What You Must Know About Paralegal Salary

What is a Paralegal?
In the majority of jurisdictions, a paralegal is a term used to describe a paraprofessional who assists legal professionals, most commonly qualified lawyers, in their day to day legal work. In the United States, paralegals are not authorized by any government body or governmental agency to offer legal services nor are they subject to the government or court sanctioned rules of conduct. 
In the United States a paralegal is in essence, a lawyer’s assistant. The paralegal works under the direct supervision of their coordinating legal professional; the paralegal will provide administrative assistance to streamline the attorney’s day-to-day work. 
In the United States, a paralegal cannot set fees, give legal advice, appear as counsel of record in court or sign pleadings (and other legal or court documents) in a representative fashion. If a paralegal attempts to fulfill any of these roles, which are distinctly reserved for an attorney, they will be in direct violation of the unauthorized practice of law statutes that are present in the majority of states in America. 
That being said, paralegals are found in all areas of law within the United States; a paralegal can aid a lawyer working in a criminal trial, the family court of law, real estate, estate planning, government positions or civil matters. 

Paralegal Salary:
The majority of paralegals, roughly 70%, work for law firms. A paralegal will perform many duties at a much lower salary then the attorneys who they work for. That being said, the paralegal salary is still relatively high; the paralegal salary is especially high considering there are no official requirements to become a paralegal. 
The majority of paralegals will take care of the day to day duties and tasks for an attorney; the most common functions of a paralegal include the following: meeting with clients and witnesses, researching the laws and aspects pertinent to a particular legal case, drafting legal documents for their coordinating attorney and assisting attorneys with trial preparation during various legal proceedings.  

The paralegal salary will differentiate based on the location of the law firm as well as the particular law office in which the paralegal works. Furthermore, the paralegal salary will vary by industry; for example, a paralegal working for a state government will obtain a different paralegal salary than an individual working for a private law firm. 
The below table will list the average paralegal salaries for various industries; additionally the below table will provide a range for the highest and lowest paralegal salaries:
Lowest Paralegal Salary= $27,450 per year
Average Paralegal Salary=$43,040 per year
Highest Paralegal Salary=$67,540
Paralegal Salary for an individual who works for the Federal Government: $56,080 per year
Paralegal Salary for an individual who works for a Local Government: $42,170 per year
Paralegal Salary who works for Local Services Industry: $41,460 per year
Paralegal Salary who works for a State Government: $38,020 per year

Advance Your Career with Paralegal Studies

Advance Your Career with Paralegal Studies

What are Paralegal Studies?
A paralegal, in essence, is a legal assistant. That being said, paralegals are not permitted to practice law; the occupation is not allowed to offer legal advice nor represent clients in the court of law. Although paralegals are stripped of the responsibilities of a qualified legal professional, the occupation is essential to assist attorneys in writing briefs, investigating facts within a case, constructing closing, organizing schedules and interviewing prospective clients. 
Paralegal studies are programs aimed to bolster an individual’s ability to deliver the aforementioned roles. The program of paralegal studies does not; however, limit an individual to only work in a law office—a number of paralegals who undertake various paralegal studies will work in government or corporate settings. 
Paralegal studies refer to the suggested educational programs that an individual should undertake to become a paralegal. Although there are no distinct certification requirements to assume a paralegal’s duties, it is recommended that a prospective paralegal engage and successfully complete various paralegal studies. 
By completing such programs or courses, a prospective candidate will increase his or her chances of landing a job as a paralegal within a law firm, government office or corporate setting. Furthermore, those individuals who satisfy these paralegal studies will most likely earn higher wages than individuals who simply obtain a bachelor’s degree in a related field. 

Suggested Routes to become a Paralegal:
An individual, in the most basic of routes, can become a paralegal by obtaining an associate’s degree from an accredited academic institution. Paralegal studies in these types of environments, such as colleges, will require roughly 60 credit hours. A number of institutions offer paralegal studies in intense learning environments where a student can complete advanced training in a year to 15 months. 
Some colleges or universities in the United States offer paralegal studies in the form of specialized paralegal programs; these programs will award an individual, upon successful completion, with a bachelor’s degree in paralegal studies. Although these programs are not widespread, they are commonly found in those academic institutions, which offer legal programs. The basic curriculum will entail roughly 120 credit hours of study to obtain a bachelor’s degree in this specific field. 
The most common form of paralegal studies is found in post-baccalaureate certification programs. These types of paralegal studies require the prospective student to obtain a bachelor’s degree—there are no requirements for a specific major.
The curriculum in these types of bachelors studies programs require roughly 30 credit hours, which may be completed in as little as a few weeks to a few months. The majority of schools who offer these types of paralegal studies will include accelerated or night programs to offer students certification as quickly as possible. 
The role of a paralegal entails extensive background work; because of this function, the majority of paralegal studies will focus on research, litigation and legal writing. The majority of university programs will also include classes that focus on a specific legal field, such as corporate business practice or real estate practice, to allow specialization for the individual looking to become a paralegal.