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About Paralegals

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment of paralegals and legal assistants is projected to grow 17 percent between 2012 and 2022, faster than the average for all occupations. Review this area and the links below to learn more about the paralegal profession and NALA's role in leading the field.

Click here to read about the Paralegal Profession in the
Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2014-15


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A legal assistant or paralegal is a person qualified by education, training or work experience who is employed or retained by a lawyer, law office, corporation, governmental agency or other entity who performs specifically delegated substantive legal work for which a lawyer is responsible. (Adopted by the ABA in 1997) 


What do paralegals do? What are their typical duties and responsibilities across the various specialty practice areas. Check out this article:  Typical Paralegal Duties  published in the 2009 Career Chronicle edition of Facts & Findings!


Facts & Findings for all paralegals!

News & Upcoming Events
Certified Paralegal Program Receives National Accreditation

The National Commission for Certifying Agencies (NCCA) has accredited the NALA Certified Paralegal certification program for a five year period, expiring April 30, 2019 ...

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Paralegal CLE App for iPad and Androids Now Available

NALA Advanced Paralegal Certification courses, and NALA Campus self-study programs are now available from the Apple Store and Google Play! Paralegals may now purchase or login to courses in which they are currently enrolled through this app. The app features a free course preview for each of the 32 programs, and access to course pre-tests for CP Exam prep courses!

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New Advanced Certification Course - Child Custody

A new Advanced Paralegal Certification (APC) course in Family Law – Child Custody, Support and Visitation is now available to paralegals seeking advanced certification in this specialty practice area ...

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Certifying Board Releases Job Analysis Report

The report is used by the Certifying Board to validate and update the Certified Paralegal exam as needed and ensure NALA has current information about the roles and responsibilities of paralegals.

More
Need a product or service for your office?

The NALA Vendor Directory is a terrific place to start. This is a list of legal vendors offering a great range of help including deposition services, document services, and investigations. Click the link below...
More      

 
Click here for more news articles
 
2013 National Utilization/Compensation Survey

Approximately every 2 years since 1986, NALA has conducted a national survey of paralegals. Paralegals invited to participate include members of NALA, non-members, and members of NALA affiliated associations. With many years of reports, this regular "look" at the paralegal profession has produced some interesting and valuable data.

The findings are divided into 4 sections: participant background; employers and practice areas; billing rates; and compensation levels.
 

2013 Participants

The data is based on analysis of the responses to the 2012 National Utilization and Compensation Survey which was collected by a web based survey from October 31, 2012-December 7, 2012.  There were 1330 responses received and utilized for this report.  4% of the population are males; 96% are females.  The average age of survey participants is 46.  67% of the participants are members of NALA; 72% have received the Certified Paralegal credential.

A summary of the findings of the 2013 survey appeared in the January/February 2013 issue of Facts & FindingsClick here to downloadClick this image to download an article that summarizes the survey findings. the article.

Respondents are from a diverse geographical area.  Forty-seven states, the Virgin Islands and the District of Columbia are represented by the population. Among the regions of the United States, the Southeast region was represented by 33% of the respondents; Southwest region was represented by 26%; Far West was represented by 12%; Plains States was represented by 13%; Great Lakes was represented by 5%;  Rocky Mountain states were represented by 7%; and New England/Mid East was represented by 4%  of the respondents.  The average population of the cities represented is 596,735.

The respondents have about 20 years of legal experience; 10 years with the same employer.  Most (63%) of respondents work for a private law firm, and, of those, 68% work in firms  of 1-15 attorneys; 17% of the respondents work for corporations.  With reference to educational backgrounds, 47% of respondents have a bachelor’s degree; 31% have an associate’s degree. 

Previous surveys have asked about duties and responsibilities of paralegals. A Job Analysis study of paralegals was conducted by NALA and results released in May 2012. Click this link to review this report for detailed information about on-the-job duties and responsibilities of paralegals, and skills needed for their work.

The 2013 National Utilization and Compensation Survey presents information concerning the work environment, duties and responsibilities, billing rates and compensation levels of paralegals. Conducted every two years since 1986, the survey analysis includes a review of current findings in comparison with findings of previous surveys.  Economic data is presented in terms of such factors as size of city, size of firm, educational backgrounds, years of experience, and specialty area of practice.

 
Please click on any of the following sections for reports of the survey findings.  The files are in pdf format. These reports are lengthy - we appreciate your patience in waiting for the download.