Find Paralegal Certificate Schools near Canton GA 30114

How to Find a Paralegal Degree Program near Canton Georgia

Canton GA paralegal working with attorneyBest Wishes regarding your decision to enroll in paralegal studies near Canton GA and start your journey that will result in a gratifying profession in legal services. However, it’s important that you locate the best school so that you will receive the comprehensive training that you need to achieve success. As you probably know, the legal field is one of the fastest growing occupations in the United States, and more and more educational choices are becoming available, both on campus and online. However with so many alternatives to choose from, where does one start? A number of potential students begin by trying to find paralegal schools within driving range of their Canton residences. Of those choices, they look for the program with the lowest tuition. Although cost and location are prime considerations when choosing a college, they are not the only factors you need to take into consideration. Things like accreditation and the reputation of the program should be taken into consideration also. Later in this article we will cover a list of concerns that you must ask prospective paralegal certificate schools so that you can evaluate and compare each one prior to making your selection. But before we do, let’s take a look at what a paralegal does and the educational options that are offered to earn either a paralegal certificate or degree.

What is a Paralegal and What Do They Do?

Canton GA law libraryParalegals and legal assistants basically both fill the same job positions and responsibilities, just with different titles. However, legal secretaries are not the equivalent of either of those two positions and belong to a different job classification. Both paralegals and legal assistants assist attorneys in Canton GA with a wide variety of job duties, such as legal research, maintaining client files, drafting legal documents and communicating with clients. Their particular job functions are based upon the type of practice where they work. As an example, a legal assistant for a criminal law firm might help with trial logistics or delivering documents to court. In private practices, a paralegal’s work is usually billed hourly as are the lawyer’s. And the same as attorneys, they must carry out their duties with a high degree of professionalism and abide by a strict code of professional ethics. As mentioned, their responsibilities can be wide ranging in support of the practices where they work, but some of their everyday activities might include:

  • Researching and fact checking cases
  • Conducting research on relevant cases and laws
  • Drafting correspondence and legal documents
  • Submitting legal documents with the court or opposing counsel
  • Helping attorneys get ready for trial and stay organized with their cases
  • Organizing and preserving legal files, documents and additional records

With all of their duties, the role of a Canton GA paralegal can be involved and very demanding. However, what they are not legally permitted to do is give legal counsel and advice or represent a client in a legal proceeding. But they are not restricted to clerical or administrative duties more apropos to the job of a legal secretary. Paralegals really are the right hand support systems for lawyers. And since they do so much of the legal ground work and preparation, attorneys have the ability to manage a much larger volume of clients or cases than they could alone.

Paralegal Training and Certification

law books and Canton GA judge's gavelAs we previously covered, paralegals are basically the same as legal assistants, with paralegals arguably having more professional sounding job titles. As a result, for either position the educational prerequisites and job prospects will be the same. The quickest way to start your career in Canton GA as a paralegal is by obtaining a certificate, which may require just 6 months to complete. Most entry level positions do require an Associate’s Degree, which offer a more comprehensive education and may be acquired at numerous community colleges in 2 years. For an even more comprehensive education, 4 year Bachelor’s Degrees are available as well. After you have earned either a certificate or degree, you may choose to continue and get a certification. Even though it is not a legal requirement in Georgia to practice as a paralegal, certification may not only help increase your employment opportunities, but help establish you as a professional as well. A few of the highly regarded certifying organizations in the profession are:

  • National Federation of Paralegal Associations
  • American Alliance of Paralegals
  • National Association of Legal Assistants
  • National Association for Legal Professionals

By graduating with a certificate or degree from an accredited school (we will cover the benefits of accreditation later) and earning a certification, you will have taken 2 essential initial steps that will help ensure your success as a paralegal in Canton GA.

Paralegal Online Training

attending paralegal school online in Canton GAOnline paralegal programs have become more common and can be an excellent alternative for those in Canton GA looking for convenient access to classes and accommodating scheduling. Online schools can be particularly appealing to individuals who continue to work while obtaining a degree. As an additional advantage, online programs can sometimes be less expensive than on campus options. Even secondary expenses for such items as study materials or commuting can be minimized or eliminated. One caution, not all internet programs are accredited, which we will discuss in greater detail later. But at a minimum accreditation helps guarantee that the education you receive is of the highest quality. So check to make certain that the school and program you are thinking about are accredited by a highly regarded organization, for instance the American Bar Association. But if you are dedicated enough to attend classes in a less structured and formal environment, then earning your certificate or degree online could be the right choice for you.

What to Ask Paralegal Degree Programs

Since you now you have a better idea about what paralegals do and what training options are available, you can begin the process of evaluating Canton GA area schools. But since there are so many programs accessible at junior and community colleges, in addition to vocational and trade schools, you need to learn what questions to ask in order to compare each one. This is particularly true if you add all of the online paralegal certificate and degree programs as well. If you are like the majority of potential students, you will begin by searching for schools within driving distance and then comparing their tuition. But as we have previously discussed, there are other important factors to consider also, including the reputation and accreditation of the schools. So let’s take a look at a few of the questions you should be asking the schools you are considering so that you can properly vet each one and make your final selection.

Is the Paralegal School Accredited? The paralegal program and school that you select should be accredited by a reputable organization such as the American Bar Association. If it is an online school, it might also receive accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which targets distance or online learning. Accreditation will not only help guarantee that the education you will receive will be of the highest standard, but it will demonstrate to potential employers that you are a qualified professional as well. Numerous Canton GA law firms will only hire entry level paralegals that are graduates of an accredited program. Also, financial assistance and student loans are often accessible only for accredited programs.

What’s the Reputation of the School? Research what the rankings and reputations are for the Canton GA paralegal programs you are looking at. This is of special importance if you are entering the field with no previous work history, since employers will need to make a decision based on the caliber of your education exclusively. Confirming that the school you select is accredited is an excellent first step. Reviewing school rating reports, such as those provided by U.S. News and World Report, can help verify school quality of education and rankings as well. You can also call several law firms that you may have an interest in working for after graduation and ask what schools they recommend. Remember that even if a school is not the most highly ranked, its paralegal program could still have an exceptional reputation.

Does the School Sponsor Internships? Internship programs offer students an opportunity to experience working in a law office or other legal enterprise while attending school. They can also offer a pathway for students to start creating contacts within the Canton GA legal field. Find out if the paralegal programs you are assessing provide internship programs, particularly in areas of the law that you have the most interest in pursuing upon graduation.

Is Job Placement Assistance offered? You will most likely want to secure employment quickly after graduating, but getting that initial job in a new profession can be difficult without assistance. Find out if the paralegal programs you are reviewing have job placement programs and what their placement rates are. Rapid and high placement rates are an excellent indication that the schools have large networks and great relationships with Georgia legal services employers. It also confirms that their students are highly regarded and sought after.

Where is the School’s Location? Since laws differ from state to state, it may be beneficial to select a paralegal school domiciled in the state where you wish to work after graduating. Also, it will be important to create relationships in the local legal community, possibly by means of an internship program. This is all the more justification to acquire your education in the community where you desire to work. Also, if you go to classes at a community college, most require a higher tuition for students that reside outside of their districts. So you might wish to initially investigate those colleges that are within your Canton GA local area.

What is the Entire Cost? Paralegal schools can differ in cost depending on the credential received and the amount of training provided. However, tuition will not be the only expenditure for your education. Don’t forget to add the cost of supplies, books and commuting to classes to your budget as well. Financial assistance may be accessible to help reduce some of the cost, so make sure to check with the school’s financial aid office to find out what is offered in Canton GA. Of course if you opt to attend an online program, some of these added expenses, such as for commuting, might be reduced or eliminated.

Do the Class Times Match your Schedule? Many paralegal students continue working while obtaining their training and require flexibility to schedule classes. If you can solely attend night or weekend classes near Canton GA, verify classes are available at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend on a part time basis, confirm that the school you select offers that option. Last, ask what the process is for making-up classes missed as a result of work, illness or family emergencies.

Considering Paralegal School in Canton GA?

Canton, Georgia

Canton is a city in and the county seat of Cherokee County,[4]Georgia, United States. As of the 2010 census, the city had a population of 22,958,[5] up from 7,709 in 2000. Canton is a vibrant community that offers a welcoming blend of charm, progressive spirit and endless opportunities for all. In Canton, exciting and new possibilities for growth are found within an authentic, inviting community that deeply cares about the City’s future and unrivaled quality of life. Conveniently between Atlanta and the Blue Ridge Mountains, the City offers scenic views of foothills and the Etowah River.

Canton is located near the center of Cherokee County at 34°13′38″N 84°29′41″W / 34.22722°N 84.49472°W / 34.22722; -84.49472 (34.227307, −84.494727).[6] The city lies just north of Holly Springs and south of Ball Ground. Interstate 575 passes through the eastern side of the city, with access from exits 14 through 20. Canton is 40 miles (64 km) north of downtown Atlanta via I-575 and I-75.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 18.7 square miles (48.5 km2), of which 18.6 square miles (48.2 km2) is land and 0.15 square miles (0.4 km2), or 0.76%, is water.[5] The Etowah River, a tributary of the Coosa River, flows from east to west through the center of the city.

As of the 2010 census,[2] there were 22,958 people, 8,204 households, and 5,606 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,234.3 people per square mile (476.8/km²). There were 9,341 housing units at an average density of 502.2 per square mile (194.0/km²).

The location could not be found.

Enroll in the Best Paralegal Training near Canton GA

Enrolling in the right paralegal degree program is a vital first step toward your success in the gratifying field of law. As we have addressed in this post, you have the choice of attending classes on campus or you can attend them online in the privacy and comfort of your Canton residence. Paralegal education programs are made available in many formats and lengths. Various kinds of public and private institutions provide paralegal education, including junior and community colleges, four year universities and colleges, as well as trade and vocational schools. Your selection of a paralegal school will have a profound influence on your opportunities for success in your new profession. Considering that there is a broad range in the quality of programs, choose carefully. Afford yourself the best possible chance to be successful in this exciting profession. But no matter how you elect to obtain your education and earn your degree or certificate, by asking the questions that we have presented you will be able to review each school and make your final decision. And with the ideal education you can realize your career goal to become a practicing paralegal in Canton GA.

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