If you are interested in a law career but are not interested in becoming a lawyer, a paralegal is a great option.
You get to be actively involved with many aspects of law without the years of educational commitment or the potential debt that follows.
Learn more about becoming a paralegal and how to get the education you need to succeed in this quick guide.
Article Table of Contents
- 1 Licensing Requirements to Become a Paralegal in Colorado
- 2 5 Paralegal Schools in Colorado
- 3 Salary Information
- 4 Frequently Asked Questions
Licensing Requirements to Become a Paralegal in Colorado
The state of Colorado does not require paralegals to have a license, certificate, or degree.
However, many law firms do require – at a minimum – a certificate or degree in order to be hired.
5 Paralegal Schools in Colorado
The following are five top options for a quality paralegal education in Colorado.
1. Community College of Denver
The Community College of Denver offers both a paralegal certificate program and an Associate of Applied Science in Paralegal studies.
The certificate program requires 30 credit hours spread over two semesters, and the Associate’s program requires 60 credit hours over four semesters.
The tuition for these programs is $156.40 per credit hour for Colorado residents or $641.80 per credit hour for non-residents.
Fees are estimated at $146.50 per credit hour.
This makes the total tuition and fees for residents $302.90 per credit hour, which totals $9,087 for the certificate program and $18,174 for the Associate program.
For non-residents, total tuition and fees are $788.30 per credit hour, which comes to $23,649 for the certificate program and $47,298 for the Associate program.
These totals do not include books, supplies, fees, or additional expenses.
2. Colorado Mountain College
If you are looking for an affordable, flexible paralegal program, Colorado Mountain College is a great choice.
They offer both a paralegal certificate program and an Associate’s degree program.
The certificate program requires 36 credits – most of which can be transferred to your Associate’s degree in paralegal studies if you decide to continue your education.
You can complete the certificate program in a year or less.
The Associate’s paralegal program requires 63 to 64, depending on the courses you choose, and it can be completed within two years.
Many of these classes are offered online, allowing you to complete your program on your time.
If you live in the school’s district, you will pay $95 per credit hour, bringing tuition of the certificate program to $3,420 and the Associate’s program to approximately $6,080.
If you do not live in the district but do live in the state, it costs $195 per credit hour.
This brings the total cost of the certificate to $7,020 and the Associate’s program’s total to $12,480.
Out-of-state tuition is $480 per credit hour, making the certificate program $17,280 and the Associate’s program $30,720.
These prices do not include fees, books, and additional expenses.
The good news is that in addition to financial aid, Colorado Mountain College offers various methods of financial assistance, which can further reduce your education costs.
3. Arapahoe Community College
Arapahoe Community College also offers affordable education to become a successful paralegal through both an Associate’s program and a certificate program.
The certificate program requires 36 credit hours and about a year to complete.
The Associate’s program requires 60 credit hours or approximately two years to complete.
Tuition can be as low as $156.40 per credit hour for Colorado residents that qualify for the COF or $260.40 per credit hour for those that don’t.
This takes the cost of the certificate program to $5,630 for residents with the COF and $9,374.40 for residents without the COF.
The Associate’s program will be $9,384 with the COF and $15,624 for those without the assistance.
Non-Colorado residents pay approximately $641.80 per credit hour, making the total tuition cost of the certificate program $23,104.80 and the Associate’s program $38,508 prior to books, fees, and additional expenses.
4. Pikes Peak Community College
Pikes Peak Community College offers similar program options and costs as Arapahoe Community College.
You can choose between a 30-credit certificate program that takes two semesters and a 64-credit Associate’s Degree for Paralegal studies that takes two years.
Tuition is $156.40 per credit hour with COF assistance, $260.40 for residents without COF assistance, and $641.80 for non-residents.
Those tuition rates bring the cost of the certificate program to $4,692 with COF, $7,812 for residents with no COF, and $19,254 for non-residents.
The Associate’s Degree program comes to $10,009.60 with COF assistance, $16,665.60 for residents without the assistance, and $41,075.20 for non-residents.
5. Front Range Community College
If you are wanting to enter your career even faster, Front Range Community College offers a Foundations of Paralegal/Legal Assistant Certificate.
This program requires only 15 credits or one semester to complete.
It will prepare you for an entry-level career so that you can get started almost immediately.
Front Range Community College offers the same tuition rates as Pikes Peak and Arapahoe.
With these rates, this certificate program will cost $2,346 with COF, $3,906 for residents without COF, and $9,627 for non-residents – not including books, supplies, and other fees.
They also offer an Associate’s and Bachelor’s in Paralegal Studies if you want to continue.
Paralegal Schools in Colorado – Summary Table
|Community College of Denver||800 Curtis Street, Denver, CO 80204|
|Colorado Mountain College||802 Grand Ave, Glenwood Springs, CO 81601|
|Arapahoe Community College||5900 S Santa Fe Dr, Littleton, CO 80120|
|Pikes Peak Community College||5675 S Academy Blvd, Colorado Springs, CO 80906|
|Front Range Community College||3645 W 112th Ave, Westminster, CO 80031|
Paralegals in Colorado typically make anywhere between $53,034 and $67,709. However, the average salary is $59,967.Annual Salary Range: Annual Salary by Location:
|Location||Avg. Annual Salary|
Frequently Asked Questions
What do I need to do to get certified if I want to take that step?
You will simply need to take one of the following national exams:
- Paralegal Advanced Competency Exam
- Paralegal Core Competency Exam
- Certified Paralegal (CLA)/Legal Assistant (CP) Exam
- Professional Paralegal Certification
What is the COF?
The COF mentioned as assistance with the schools above is the College Opportunity Fund.
This is a stipend provided by the Colorado government to help cover the costs of higher education.
Who hires paralegals in Colorado besides law firms?
You might be surprised at how many types of businesses hire paralegals, including charities, banks, and government organizations.
You can also market your services as a freelancer.