After having gone through some of the same situations personally, and
being "ripped off" by an unethical paralegal, I decided to go to college
and get my degree as paralegal.
I started my college courses at Cerritos
Community College in the fall of 1992, which at that time became ABA(American
Bar Association) community college accredited for their business paralegal
courses; which I would like to add that they were one of the first community
colleges to become accredited by the ABA.
After having to take a leave after several semesters, I finished all the
required courses in the fall of 1997. In fact, I took all the law
courses avaliable even though I didn't have to because, I knew that I wanted
to help people by being an "independant paralegal" and I felt that
I needed a broad spectrum of all law. My professors all agreed, and
all of the professors at Cerritos College that teach the law courses are
all working attorneys. In fact, several of the professors encourage parlegal
students to consider working for themselves. It can be both rewarding
and financially sound.
Even though I finished only several years ago, I have been practicing
as a paralegal since 1995. I started practicing as a paralegal prior
to my finishing all my courses because, there are no required laws that
say you need to have that piece of parchment before you work or practice
as a paralegal unlike an attorney, and I want to start helping those less unfortunate
people unable to afford an attorney in trying to resovle there legal woes.
But, rest assured, even though as a paralegal, we cannot give legal
advice or represent a client in a court of law, paralegals have to follow
the same code of ethics that a lawyer has to follow.
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Last updated: 4/26/2000