There is usually a long list of paralegal courses that must be taken before an individual can begin her legal career. These may include criminal law and bankruptcy law, which will likely provide an overview of these areas of jurisprudence. Civil law and tort law provide similar instruction but are devoted to non-criminal matters. Paralegal courses also include those that help students to develop the skills that they will need to perform their daily duties, such as legal writing and research.
Paralegal programs vary, so the same courses may not always be taught. There are some paralegal courses that are likely to be included in a curriculum, however. Even so, the subject matter, materials, and manner in which the course is taught may differ. A good example of this is criminal law, which is included in many paralegal programs. The textbooks and the laws covered for this course tend to be influenced by the jurisdiction.
Bankruptcy law is another of the paralegal courses that is commonly included in a curriculum. Students typically are provided with an overview of the laws in this subject area. These may include regulations that pertain to individuals and to businesses. This course may be used to acquaint students with the types of documents that are required for associated proceedings and the manner in which they should be prepared. In some places, business law is combined with this course.
Students enrolled in a paralegal curriculum are commonly required to take some sort of torts or civil law course. This can be a very important part of a student’s education because this area of law provides a significant number of employment opportunities for paralegals in some jurisdictions. These courses usually outline the elements of civil offenses and the remedies available for them. It is also likely that these paralegal courses will educate students about defense strategies for these types of cases.
Legal writing and legal document preparation are important paralegal courses because much of the work that legal assistants do on a daily basis will be addressed. Regardless of the branch of law that a paralegal finds employment in, it is very likely that the attorney that he works with will rely upon him for numerous writing and document composition duties. This can include correspondence that is to be lodged with the courts and documents that communicate with clients and opposing parties.
Legal research courses are generally included in a curriculum to teach students where and how to find information that is required for their personal duties or that is needed by the attorneys they work with. Lessons also tend to include instruction regarding the types of information that is needed for particular situations. These paralegal courses may acquaint students with legal libraries and with online databases. Students are also likely to learn how to cite the materials that they use.