How to Become a Legal Aid

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Becoming a legal aid---also known as a legal assistant or a paralegal---generally requires that you obtain an associates degree, but for those who already possess a bachelor's degree, there are also certificate programs available. As with pursuing any career, the steps to becoming a paralegal should begin in high school. It is important to take the required prerequisite courses and obtain the appropriate GPA to be accepted into the post-secondary program of your choice. From there, it is only a matter of graduating and applying to the law firm of your choice.

  • Graduate from high school with the appropriate pre-requisite courses for the legal program you are applying for. Each program will have different pre-requisite courses, so check the required entry requirements list for the program you wish to enroll in. Make sure you are taking the appropriate high school classes to make you eligible to apply.If you have already graduated from high school and are applying as a mature student, skip this step.

  • Select a post-secondary institution to pursue your studies. To become a legal aid, you must apply for at least an associate's degree in legal studies or a similar field. Those who already possess a bachelor's degree in a different field can apply to a paralegal certificate program.

  • Complete the courses in your program until you have obtained enough credits to obtain your degree.

  • Prepare your resume to list your credentials as well as your work-related skills. Paralegals are required to have a high-level management and clerical skills, as well as possess knowledge of the law and legal practices.

  • Submit your application to the law firm of your choice for consideration and successfully complete the interview process to obtain the position of employment.

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