State By State Requirements to Become a Lawyer

Paralegal Job Description in Georgia

Georgia state law prohibits paralegals from offering their services directly to the public. Paralegals in Georgia must work under the authority of a licensed attorney and offer services under his or her supervision. These are the only state laws that apply to paralegals, otherwise known as legal assistants, in the state of Georgia. However, certain education and experience is a must if you wish to become a paralegal in Georgia. For those with this wish, keep reading.
 

Step 1

Paralegal Education Requirements in Georgia

Georgia does not have any laws specifying education required of paralegals in the state. However, it is almost impossible to become employed as a paralegal unless you hold a certificate or degree.

Georgia Paralegal Online and Campus Schools

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Washington University School of Law - Online Master of Legal Studies (MLS) Degree
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Rasmussen College - Online Paralegal Associate Degree and Post-Degree Certificate Programs

Programs for paralegals may be accredited by the American Bar Association (ABA) or non-accredited. Choosing a school based on its accreditation status is a personal preference and again, not mandatory based on Georgia law. Examples of Georgia paralegal programs that do hold ABA accreditation are:

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Step 2

Get Paralegal Work Experience in Georgia

Your paralegal program may offer the opportunity to pursue work experience while you are still a student. If it does not, consider one of the following pro bono organizations in which to volunteer your time and gain valuable paralegal work experience:

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Step 3

Seek Optional Paralegal Certification in Georgia

Paralegal certification is not a requirement in order to work in Georgia. The Georgia Association of Paralegals recommends the following national certification programs to those who are interested in pursuing paralegal certification. The National Federation of Paralegal Associations (NFPA) sponsors both:

  • Paralegal Core Competency Exam (PCCE) – This is an entry-level exam designed for new paralegals. If you pass the exam, you may call yourself a CORE Registered Paralegal, or CRP. Exam locations in Georgia include:
    • Savannah
    • Augusta
    • Valdosta
    • Macon
    • Athens
    • Columbus
    • Atlanta
    • Sandy Springs
    • Tucker
    • Smyrna
    • Dahlonega
  • Paralegal Advanced Competency Exam (PACE) – This is an exam for advanced paralegals who have been in the work force for a while. If you pass, you can call yourself a Registered Paralegal (RP). Areas tested in this exam include:
    • Legal and Factual Writing
    • Office Administration
    • Legal and Factual Research
    • Administering Client Legal Domains
    • Developing Client Legal Matters

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Step 4

Start Your Career as a Paralegal in Georgia

Law firms are not the only employer o paralegals in Georgia. Hospitals, non-profit organizations, educational institutions, corporations and other industries all employ paralegals in Georgia. For example, the following entities have recently advertised available paralegal jobs in Georgia:

  • King & Spalding – Atlanta
  • Phoebe Putney Memorial Hospital - Albany
  • Ballard Spahr LLP – Atlanta
  • National Guard- Augusta
  • Georgia Department of Education – Atlanta
  • Law Offices of Kevin J. McDonough, P.C. – Cumming
  • Imerys- Roswell
  • AIG-Alpharetta

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Step 5

Now That You’ve Become a Paralegal in Georgia

Congrats! You are now a paralegal in Georgia, fully eligible to work under the supervision of a licensed attorney! Think about becoming a member of a voluntary organization of paralegals like the ones below. These organizations can help you advance in your career, find continuing legal education if necessary, and network with other legal professionals:

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