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Paralegal Technology

Are you interested in our state and national legal systems? That interest is a good start to a successful career as a Paralegal. Traits that tend to be helpful include being organized, enjoying reading, and appreciating a professional working atmosphere.

Graduates of the Paralegal Technology program are prepared to serve as entry-level paralegals. They are employed in such positions as deputy clerks of court, as loan office investigators, as law office managers, and as paralegals.

As one of the fastest growing sectors of the job market, paralegals are hired locally as well as throughout the region.

Many CCCC graduates work in the Chatham, Harnett, and Lee County region with some also taking positions in Moore, Cumberland, Wake, and Orange Counties. Graduates are qualified to sit for the Certified Legal Assistant (CLA) exam.

The CCCC Paralegal curriculum has a high placement rate for its graduates. The active working relationship that faculty have with employers assists with job placement of Paralegal graduates. The instructional emphasis on practical, real world experience also improves employment opportunities.

The Paralegal Program is offered in its entirety during the day on the Lee County Campus in Sanford with selected courses offered in the evening. Short certificate programs are offered in the evening on the Lee Campus and the Harnett Campus in Lillington. Selected classes are available via distance education.

The Associate in Applied Science Degree is a two-year program. A full-time student following the prescribed schedule may complete the program in five semesters.

Learning by doing is the focus of the instructional program. Students enjoy the hands-on approach of the CCCC Paralegal Program.

Faculty, who are licensed, practicing attorneys, believe in the hands-on instructional method. Individual and team projects include performing legal research, drafting wills, trusts, complaints, and pleadings. Students learn by drafting separation agreements, contracts, and conducting real estate title searches at local courthouses.

Students utilize the college law library, Westlaw and Internet resources as they draft civil litigation complaints, answers, and discovery documents. They prepare corporate documents including articles of incorporation and bylaws. In addition, students learn how to prepare real estate closing documents and to draft estate documents.

Participation in the Paralegal Club is encouraged along with participation in field trips to local courthouses, NC Supreme Court, and Washington, DC.

Small classes are an added benefit of the CCCC Paralegal Program.

How long will it take to complete the program?
The CCCC paralegal program consists of 5 semesters, including a summer semester.

Are any Paralegal courses offered at night or at other campuses?
The Paralegal Program is headquarteredd at the Lee County campus, with paralegal courses being offered during the day. Many of the law courses require the use of the resources available in the Law Section of the Learning Resource Center (LRC) at the Lee County campus.

Some general education courses may be taken at night, at other campuses or through distance education.

Where do Paralegals work?
Many paralegal graduates work in private law firms, but there are also other employment opportunities. CCCC graduates have found work in banks, real estate companies, legal departments of large corporations and hospitals, and in numerous government offices, i.e., County Attorney's Office, City Attorney's Office, Clerk of Superior Court's Office, Attorney General's Office, etc.

What are some examples of interesting assignments found in this program?
At CCCC we offer a generalist program wherein courses in many different legal areas are taught. Popular, practical assignments include: real estate title searching; drafting actual court documents; interviewing clients and witnesses; writing your own will; and performing legal research using traditional and computer resources.

What Students Learn

Students successfully completing the Paralegal Technology Program will be able to:

  • Perform legal research utilizing traditional book resources, electronic resources, statutes, case law, and secondary sources
  • Use proper legal citation format
  • Assist with the delivery of legal services by interviewing clients, witnesses; preparing client and case correspondence; preparing cases for hearings and trials; and assisting at hearings and trials
  • Prepare legal documents such as contracts, separation agreements, wills, trusts, corporate documents, pleadings, discovery documents, bankruptcy petitions, AOC forms, and others
  • Assist with the probate of an estate and prepare estate planning and estate administration documents
  • Perform real estate title searches and prepare real estate closing documents
  • Differentiate between crimes and torts; state issues and federal issues, applying all proper jurisdictional and venue rules
  • Describe the elements of major crimes and torts
  • Read and brief a case
  • Prepare an internal memorandum of law
  • State the importance of strict adherence to ethical rules governing the delivery of legal services in the state of North Carolina
  • Write clear and effective office memos, legal correspondence, and other material appropriate for the paralegal field.
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