Virginia

Paralegal Careers in Virginia

Follow the step by step process on how to become a paralegal below:

  1. Find Your Paralegal Education in Virginia
  2. Attain Paralegal Work Experience in Virginia
  3. Become Certified as a Paralegal in Virginia (Optional)
  4. Inquire About Paralegal Employment in Virginia
  5. What’s Next for Paralegals in Virginia

Paralegal Career Information in Virginia

The Bureau of Labor Statistics lists the annual mean wage of Virginia paralegals as of May 2012 at $50,990. This is a high average salary in a state in which the paralegal profession is not regulated by the government. Education is not mandatory in Virginia in order to become a paralegal, although it is recommended. With the many opportunities for paralegals in Virginia and nearby Washington, D.C., this is a great time for you to discover how to become a paralegal in Virginia.

Step 1

Launch Your Paralegal Education in Virginia

Virginia does not require paralegals to obtain any education, by law. However, the Virginia Alliance of Paralegal Associations has set educational standards that they feel all paralegals working in the state must meet. Most Virginia employers of paralegals go by these standards. Paralegals in Virginia should complete one of the following educational options:

  • Graduate with a bachelor degree in any field plus one year of paralegal experience
  • Graduate with a bachelor degree in any field plus 24 credit hours of paralegal specialty courses
  • Graduate with an associate degree in paralegal studies with at least 60 credit hours, 24 of which are in paralegal specialty courses
  • Graduate with an associate degree in any subject with 24 credit hours of paralegal specialty courses
  • Graduate from an American Bar Association (ABA)-approved paralegal education program

Virginia Paralegal Online and Campus Schools

Featured Programs:
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Washington University in St. Louis Logo
Washington University in St. Louis
Washington University in St. Louis WU’s online Master of Legal Studies (MLS), MLS in Taxation, and Master of Laws (LLM) in U.S. Law or Taxation are taught by the same expert faculty as the university’s on-campus programs, all delivered in a streamlined online format that can be completed in as little as a year.
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Arizona State University
ASU’s online undergraduate (BA/BS), graduate (MA/MS/MLA/LLM), and graduate certificate programs in law, criminal justice, and public policy draw on the university’s more than 15-year track-record for innovation in online education and are taught by the same world-renowned faculty as the on-campus programs.
Purdue University Global Logo
Purdue University Global
Purdue’s BS in Legal Support and Services offers a flexible way to build a comprehensive foundation in law, the option to choose a paralegal concentration, and a direct path to future graduate study in public administration, human services, psychology, and more.
Rasmussen University Logo
Rasmussen University
Rasmussen’s Paralegal Associate Degree and Post-Degree Certificate programs offer career-ready pathways to become a certified paralegal and outstanding support and guidance along the way.
University of Dayton Logo
University of Dayton
The University of Dayton’s hybrid/online Juris Doctor (JD) earns top marks for outstanding flexibility and convenience and was the first School of Law in the nation to receive ABA variance approval for remote courses thanks to its unique online-hybrid design.
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In lieu of education, you can complete one of the following requirements, which will be discussed in detail later:

  • Have five or more years of paralegal work experience under attorney supervision (See Step 2)
  • Complete a national certification examination for paralegals and maintain that certification (see Step 3)

These paralegal programs in Virginia are approved by the ABA:

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Step 2

Attain Paralegal Work Experience in Virginia

One way to fulfill the standards of the Virginia Alliance of Paralegal Associations is to accrue five years of paralegal work experience. Some prospective paralegals reach out to legal aid agencies in Virginia to begin their work experience. These legal aid agencies would likely hire an aspiring paralegal in Virginia:

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Step 3

Get Certified as a Paralegal in Virginia

Another route to meeting the paralegal standards of the Virginia Alliance of Paralegal Associations is to become nationally certified. While this is not required of a paralegal in order to work in Virginia, the Alliance recognizes two national certification bodies:

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Step 4

Inquire About Paralegal Jobs in Virginia

Jobs for paralegals abound in Virginia, especially with its proximity to our nation’s capital. Law firms, corporations, government agencies and many other entities employ Virginia paralegals, including:

  • Cooperative Finance Corporation – Dulles
  • Banner & Witcoff, Ltd. – Washington, DC
  • Institute for Justice – Arlington
  • McDermott, Will & Emery – Washington, DC
  • Evolent Health – Arlington
  • Hogan Lovells US, LLP- Washington, DC
  • Fairfax County Government – Fairfax
  • Attorney General – Roanoke
  • Ahmad & Associates – McLean
  • Capital One- Richmond
  • Department of Veterans Affairs – Salem
  • Department of Social Services – Lynchburg
  • Rosenberg & Associates – Vienna
  • One on One Accounting & Consulting – Woodbridge
  • Hirsch & Ehlenberger, PC – Reston

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Step 5

What’s Next for Paralegals in Virginia

Congratulations! You have worked hard to become a paralegal in Virginia! If you haven’t already, think about joining one of the following voluntary membership organizations for paralegals in Virginia. They can help you with advancement of your career, networking, and more:

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