North Carolina Paralegal Schools

North Carolina paralegal schools enable aspiring paralegals who want to enter the legal field to earn a paralegal degree and learn how to work in law firms preparing documents and aiding in case preparation. Budget concerns at numerous law firms and other employers are driving growth for hiring paralegals over attorneys, making North Carolina paralegal jobs among the fastest growing job fields.

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Profiles of Well Known Schools

Methodist University: The Department of Justice Studies at Methodist University offers and American Bar Association approved Minor in Legal Studies. This is a 21 credit hour program with the four required courses of Introduction to Legal Studies, Law and the Legal System, Legal Research, and Internship. The mandatory internship credit is earned through 115 onsite work hours within a law firm/office or nonprofit organization. The three elective courses are set aside so that Legal Studies students can pursue a specialization such as Environmental Regulations, Contract Law, Business Organizations, or Family Law.

South College – Asheville: The South College – Asheville Campus offers its students a Bachelor of Science in Legal Studies and an Associate of Applied Science in Paralegal Studies, both certified by the American Bar Association. The BS in Legal Studies is 188 credits and majors are required to complete three Business Core Courses and 29 Legal Studies courses. The AAS in Paralegal Studies is a 120 hour program with the core courses including Introduction to Paralegal Studies, Legal Research and Writing (I and II), Torts and Remedies, and Ethics for Paralegals. Both types of students are required to complete an internship during their final year within a designated law office.

How to Become a Paralegal in North Carolina

The Winston-Salem area of North Carolina has the fourth largest concentration of paralegals in a metro area. The state of North Carolina has over 10,000 practicing paralegals according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. As of 2004, the North Carolina State Bar created a Plan for Paralegal Certification. This a voluntary plan that allows aspiring paralegals to become certified as a North Carolina Certified Paralegal, Paralegal Certified by the North Carolina State Bar Board of Paralegal Certification, a North Carolina State Bar Board Certified Paralegal or NCCP. The educational requirements for North Carolina are an associate, bachelor’s, or a master’s degree be attained in paralegal studies.

The median salary for a paralegal in the state of North Carolina is $41,450.00.

Coursework at North Carolina Paralegal Schools

Concise writing and research are critical for paralegals, so in addition to classes on legal document preparation and research, most North Carolina paralegal schools focus on the humanities. In addition, aspiring paralegals learn about the legal process, the Constitution and its role in the process, as well as civil and criminal trial preparations. Like law school students, North Carolina paralegal aspirants also learn about real estate issues, corporate issues, tort and personal injury law, as well as ethics. Some schools also provide room in the schedule for internships or co-ops.

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Paralegal Schools in North Carolina

North Carolina paralegal schools offer a variety of of program lengths and options. Five North Carolina paralegal schools are ABA-certified, including Carteret Community College in Morehead City, Central Piedmont Community in Charlotte and Meredith College in Raleigh. Guilford College offers a 19-week paralegal certificate program which has been designated by the North Carolina State Bar as a qualified Paralegal Studies Program since 2007. For those looking for the added flexibility and convenience of online paralegal degree programs, options include Associate of Applied Science – Paralegal at Rasmussen College or the Paralegal Certificate online program at Boston University.

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North Carolina Paralegal Certification

A North Carolina Certified Paralegal (NCCP) is recognized by the North Carolina Bar as having achieved the state’s standard for practice in the paralegal field by meeting the educational requirements found in Subchapter G, Certification of Paralegals (.0119(a)) of the Plan for Paralegal Certification. This includes an associate’s, bachelor’s, master’s or juris doctorate degree from an accredited institution. Eligible application must also pay a $125 application fee and pass an examination administered biannually by the Board of Paralegal Certification of the North Carolina State Bar.

Top Law Firms for Paralegal Graduates in North Carolina

Smith Debnam Narron Drake Saintsing & Myers, LLP was founded in 1972, and since that time has focused on solving legal problems for its clients. Smith Debnam seeks to understand its clients overall goals and needs in order to provide the best possible service. The firm places priority on professional and community leadership cultivated through professional development, and looks for paralegal graduates who will thrive in this type of environment. Poyner Spruill LLP has been ranked among the best law firms in North Carolina by US News and Best Lawyers in America. Its offices are located throughout the state, and attorneys at Poyner Spruill are experienced in many different areas of the law. The firm seeks out paralegal applicants who want to work in a team environment with a strong work ethic. The Van Winkle Law Firm has over one hundred years of history, and is now one of the oldest law practices in North Carolina. It looks for highly qualified paralegals to join its respected practice.

North Carolina Paralegal Salary and Job Outlook

Outside of medical careers, North Carolina paralegals have one of the highest salaries for professional degrees that can be completed in two years. The field also has a number of opportunities for growth, either in drafting more complex documents and managing cases, or by moving from private law practices to government agencies. Average salaries for entry-level North Carolina paralegals are in the $40k-$50k range.

Online and North Carolina Paralegal Schools

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Keiser University
Campuses: 1Online
Popular Degrees:

  • Paralegal Studies, AA (Online Only)
  • Legal Studies, BA (Online)

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Liberty University
Campuses: 1Online
Popular Degrees:

  • CERT: Paralegal Studies

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Penn Foster Schools
Campuses: 1Online
Popular Degrees:

  • Legal Secretary

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Post University
Campuses: 1Online
Popular Degrees:

  • Certificate: Paralegal (Legal Studies)
  • A.S. in Legal Studies
  • B.S. in Legal Studies

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South College Asheville
Campuses: 1Asheville
Popular Degrees:

  • Associate of Applied Science - Paralegal Studies
  • Bachelor of Science Degree - Legal Studies

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Virginia College
Campuses: 1Online
Popular Degrees:

  • BAC-Paralegal Studies
  • AS - Paralegal Studies

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Bryan University
Campuses: 1Online
Popular Degrees:

  • Associate Degree in Litigation and E-Discovery Paralegal

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California University of Pennsylvania
Campuses: 1Online
Popular Degrees:

  • Master of Science in Legal Studies: Law and Public Policy
  • Bachelor of Arts in Jurisprudence: Legal Studies

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Grand Canyon University
Campuses: 1Online
Popular Degrees:

  • M.S. in Criminal Justice: Legal Studies


Paralegal Schools in North Carolina

Caldwell Community College and Technical Institute (Hudson, NC)
Paralegal Degrees Offered:
Certificate | Paralegal Technology-Family
Certificate | Paralegal Technology-Wills

Cape Fear Community College (Wilmington, NC)
Paralegal Degrees Offered:
Certificate | Paralegal Tech

Carteret Community College (Morehead City, NC)
Paralegal Degrees Offered:
Associate of Science | Paralegal Tech

Central Carolina Community College (Sanford, NC)
Paralegal Degrees Offered:
Certificate | Paralegal Tech

Central Piedmont Community College (Charlotte, NC)
Paralegal Degrees Offered:
Associate of Science | Paralegal Tech
Diploma | Paralegal Tech

Coastal Carolina Community College (Jacksonville, NC)
Paralegal Degrees Offered:
Associate of Applied Science | Paralegal Technology

Davidson County Community College (Thomasville, NC)
Paralegal Degrees Offered:
Associate of Applied Science | Paralegal Technology

Durham Technical Community College (Durham, NC)
Paralegal Degrees Offered:
Associate of Applied Science | Paralegal Technology

Fayetteville Technical Community College (Fayetteville, NC)
Paralegal Degrees Offered:
Associate of Science | Paralegal Technology
Diploma | Paralegal Studies

Forsyth Technical Community College (Winston Salem, NC)
Paralegal Degrees Offered:
Associate of Applied Science | Paralegal Technology
Certificate | Paralegal Technology

Gaston College (Dallas, NC)
Paralegal Degrees Offered:
Associate of Applied Science | Paralegal Technology
Associate of Applied Science | Emergency Preparedness Technology
Associate of Applied Science | Latent Evidence
Associate of Applied Science | Legal Office Administration
Associate of Applied Science | Paralegal Technology

Guilford Technical Community College (Jamestown, NC)
Paralegal Degrees Offered:
Associate of Applied Science | Paralegal Technology

Johnston Community College (Smithfield, NC)
Paralegal Degrees Offered:
Associate of Science | Paralegal Technology
Associate of Science | Paralegal Technology (online program)
Certificate | Paralegal Technology
Certificate | Paralegal Technology (online program)
Diploma | Paralegal Technology
Diploma | Paralegal Technology (online program)

King’s College (Charlotte, NC)
Paralegal Degrees Offered:
Associate Degree | Legal Administration
Associate Degree | Paralegal

Miller-Motte Technical College (Raleigh, NC)
Paralegal Degrees Offered:
Associate Degree | Paralegal Studies

Pitt Community College (Winterville, NC)
Paralegal Degrees Offered:
Associate of Applied Science | Paralegal Technology

South College-Asheville (Asheville, NC)
Paralegal Degrees Offered:
Associate of Applied Science | Paralegal Studies

South Piedmont Community College (Polkton, NC)
Paralegal Degrees Offered:
Associate of Applied Science | Paralegal Technology

Southwestern Community College (Sylva, NC)
Paralegal Degrees Offered:
Associate of Applied Science | Paralegal Technology

Surry Community College (Dobson, NC)
Paralegal Degrees Offered:
Associate of Applied Science | Paralegal Technology
Certificate | Paralegal Technology

Western Piedmont Community College (Morganton, NC)
Paralegal Degrees Offered:
Associate of Applied Science | Paralegal Technology

Wilson Community College (Wilson, NC)
Paralegal Degrees Offered:
Associate Degree | Paralegal Studies

Page Edited by Charles Sipe.