In this online course, you will train for a career as a paralegal. You will learn how to fulfill the standard duties associated with this vital role. By course completion, you will be prepared to sit for and pass the Certified Paralegal (CP) exam.
What you will learn
- Learn the fundamentals of the U.S. legal system
- Master how to perform legal research and interviews
- Prepare yourself to take the Certified Paralegal certification exam through the National Association of Legal Assistants (NALA)
- Understand the basics of litigation communication skills
- Soft skills for workplace effectiveness
- Learn necessary skills required to thrive within the legal industry
How you will benefit
- Jump-start your career as a paralegal
- Work with an instructor for one-on-one assistance, and receive free access to NALA Campus and Westlaw
- Prepare a professional resume and portfolio that demonstrates your knowledge
- This course can be taken on either a PC or Mac.
- PC: Windows 8 or newer.
- Mac: OS X Snow Leopard 10.6 or later.
- Browser: The latest version of Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox are preferred. Microsoft Edge and Safari are also compatible.
- Microsoft Office (not included in enrollment).
- Adobe Acrobat Reader. Click here to download the Acrobat Reader.
- Software must be installed and fully operational before the course begins.
- Email capabilities and access to a personal email account.
You must meet one of the following requirements outlined in Categories 1, 2, or 3 at the time of filing an application form to be eligible for the CP certification exam through NALA.
1. Graduation from or completion of a paralegal program:
- (a) approved by the American Bar Association; or
- (b) an associate degree program in paralegal studies; or
- (c) a post-baccalaureate certificate program in paralegal studies; or
- (In addition to the official school transcript, a candidate must submit an original course catalog or an original letter from the school registrar or program director attesting that the program is a post-baccalaureate certificate program requiring a bachelor's degree as a prerequisite.)
- (d) a bachelor's degree program in paralegal studies; or
- (e) a paralegal program which consists of a minimum of 60 semester hours (or equivalent quarter hours) of which at least 15 semester hours (or equivalent quarter hours) are substantive legal courses.
(Candidates applying under Category 1(e) may combine college hours from more than one institution. The candidate must have graduated from a paralegal program consisting of a minimum of 15 semester hours (or 225 clock hours or 22.5 quarter hours.) Evidence of the minimum hours required under Category 1(e) must be provided with the application form.)
2. A bachelor's degree in any field plus one year of experience as a paralegal or successful completion of at least 15 semester hours (or equivalent quarter hours) of substantive paralegal courses.
(Those applying under the provision allowing for additional course work in lieu of the one-year work experience must submit an official school transcript showing completed course work.)
3. A high school diploma or equivalent plus seven (7) years' experience as a legal assistant/paralegal plus a minimum of twenty (20) hours of continuing legal education completed within a two-year period prior to application for the examination.
(Evidence of continuing legal education credit is documented by the attorney/employer attestation that must be signed as part of the application form or by submitting a certificate of completions of CLE taken.)
Instructional Material Requirements:
The instructional materials required for this course are included in enrollment. The following textbooks will be shipped to you approximately 7-10 business days after enrollment:
- Introduction to Paralegalism, by William P. Statsky,
- Paralegal Today: The Legal Team at Work, by Roger Miller and Mary Meinzinger
- Access to Westlaw: Legal Solutions
- After successful completion of the course and financial obligation you will receive access to the Certified Paralegal Exam review self-study courses, which includes:
- Access to the self-study courses
Paralegals play a vital role in the legal profession. These qualified professionals take on a variety of tasks ranging from legal research to drafting legal documents in traditional law office settings and in the corporate, government, and public arenas. Formal training is a critical part of preparing for a career as a paralegal.
The Paralegal course will help you gain the skills you need to enter the paralegal workforce. You will learn how to conduct legal research and legal interviews, how to perform legal analyses, and more. As you prepare for your paralegal career, you will also receive soft skills training to increase workplace effectiveness. The course concludes with a capstone project and a portfolio review. You will first create a complete litigation file that includes: a legal analysis brief, an investigative report, client interview checklist, intake memo, complaint, legal research, and interoffice memorandum of law. Then, you will learn how to create a strong resume that encompasses your specialized skill set and showcases the impact you would make for your next employer.
Through a partnership with National Association of Legal Assistants (NALA), you will also receive membership and access to NALA's Certified Paralegal (CP) Exam Review courses should you choose to take the NALA CP exam at a future time.
- Paralegal in the Legal System
- Paralegal Employment
- On-the-Job Realities
- Regulation of Paralegals
- Attorney and Paralegal Ethics
- Introduction to the Legal System
- Introduction to Legal Analysis
- Legal Interviewing
- Investigation in a Law Office
- Litigation Management
- Legal Research 101
- Advanced Legal Research
- Legal Writing
- Introduction to the Use of Computers
- Introduction to Law Office Administration
- Tort Law, Product Liability, and Consumer Law
- Contracts, Insurance, and Property Law
- Estates and Family Law
- Laws Affecting Business
- Criminal Law
- Portfolio Lesson
Casey Thompson is a licensed attorney in Texas. Before he started teaching, his major areas of practice were business and corporate law, entertainment law, and intellectual property rights. He received his Bachelor of Business Administration from Texas Tech University and holds a law degree from the Texas A&M School of Law. Along with his online paralegal courses, Thompson also teaches at the college level in the areas of state and federal government.