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Paralegal (SOC CODE: 23-2011.00)

Job Description Overview

Assist lawyers by investigating facts, preparing legal documents, or researching legal precedent. Conduct research to support a legal proceeding, to formulate a defense, or to initiate legal action.

Related Careers

  • Paralegals and Legal Assistants
  • Law Teachers, Postsecondary
  • Legal Secretaries
  • Vocational Education Teachers, Postsecondary

Sample Job Duties

  • Prepare affidavits or other documents, such as legal correspondence, and organize and maintain documents in paper or electronic filing system.
  • Prepare legal documents, including briefs, pleadings, appeals, wills, contracts, and real estate closing statements.
  • Prepare for trial by performing tasks such as organizing exhibits.
  • Investigate facts and law of cases and search pertinent sources, such as public records and internet sources, to determine causes of action and to prepare cases.
  • Meet with clients and other professionals to discuss details of case.
  • File pleadings with court clerk.
  • Gather and analyze research data, such as statutes, decisions, and legal articles, codes, and documents.
  • Direct and coordinate law office activity, including delivery of subpoenas.
  • Call upon witnesses to testify at hearing.
  • Arbitrate disputes between parties and assist in the real estate closing process, such as by reviewing title searches.

    What Classes Do I Need to Take?

    • Paralegal Program Requirements

      Business Division
      Degree S0310

      The paralegal program is intended to prepare students for employment as paralegals in both private and public sectors following graduation. The American Bar Association (ABA) By-Laws Section 21.12 uses the terms paralegal and legal assistant interchangeably referring to persons who, although not members of the legal profession, are qualified through education, training, or work experience and are employed or retained by a lawyer, law office, governmental agency, or other entity in a capacity or function which involves the performance, under the direction and supervision of an attorney, of specifically delegated substantive legal work. Paralegals/legal assistants must comply with the legal restrictions in the practice of law by nonlawyer. The California Business & Professions Code, Section 6450 et seq, governs paralegals in California.

      The American Bar Association does not recognize the following courses as meeting its definition of General Education: ARTB 14, ARTD 15A, ARTD 20, ARTD 25A, ARTS 30A, ARTS 40A, THTR 11, MUS 7, AD 3 and COUN 5. Students developing their educational plan should select another course from the Mt. SAC General Education area which will satisfy that area’s General Education requirement.

      This degree requires the completion of General Education coursework plus the following:

      Required Courses

      Course Prefix Course Name Units
      PLGL 30Introduction to Paralegal/Legal3
      PLGL 31Legal Analysis and Writing3
      PLGL 32Advanced Legal Analysis and Writing3
      PLGL 33Civil Procedure3
      PLGL 34Law Office Procedures3
      PLGL 35Law Office Technology3
      PLGL 37Tort Law3
      PLGL 38Employment and Ethical Issues in Paralegalism3
      PLGL 39Contract Law3
      Required Electives
      Choose one course from the following:3
      PLGL 41
      Property Law
      PLGL 42
      Family Law
      PLGL 43
      Wills and Trusts
      PLGL 44
      Bankruptcy Law
      PLGL 48
      Criminal Law and Procedures
      PLGL 49
      Evidence Law
      BUSL 18
      Business Law
      or BUSL 18H
      Business Law - Honors
      BUSL 19
      Advanced Business Law
      BUSL 20
      International Business Law
      Total Units30

      Paralegal Program Website 

    Classes To Take (Brochure)
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