How to Become a Paralegal in Massachusetts

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How to Become a Paralegal in Massachusetts

If you learn how to become a Paralegal in Massachusetts, it gives you the chance to earn money without waiting to become a lawyer.

This position only requires about a year or two of schooling and internship before you find permanent, full-time employment.

Licensing Requirements to Become a Paralegal in Massachusetts

Massachusetts doesn’t require a license to become a Paralegal.

However, most employers mandate that you attend training approved by the state and national American Bar Association.

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A typical certification route for most students is to prepare for one of two exams hosted by the National Association of Legal Assistants (NALA).

You can earn the Certified Paralegal (CP) or Advanced Certified Paralegal (ACP) credential.

You can take certificate classes that may take you only about a year to complete and start working.

Then, if you want to, you can work towards an associate’s or bachelor’s degree.

5 Paralegal Schools in Massachusetts

1. Boston University (BU)

Boston University Logo

Boston University offers an accelerated online Paralegal Studies program.

You could complete the Certificate of Achievement offered by this school as soon as 14 weeks from now.

This coursework prepares you for legal research and writing.

In addition, it introduces you to Probate, Family, Business, and Real Estate Law.

You will also become proficient in the software typically used by people working as Legal Assistants or Paralegal in MA.

2. Middlesex Community College

Middlesex Community College Logo

When you complete your Paralegal Studies Certificate training, you will be ready to gather and provide factual case data.

In addition, you will have developed the skills you need to work in a corporate, state, or local legal setting.

Courses can count toward an associate degree program.

3. Suffolk University

Suffolk University Logo

The training you receive by Suffolk has received approval from the ABA.

The undergraduate degree here will prepare you to fully assist an attorney’s private law firm or public legal department.

It will also send you in the direction of applying to law school, where you would earn a graduate degree and become a lawyer.

Suffolk offers the chance to earn an Associate Degree or Certificate in Paralegal studies.

4. Assumption University

Assumption University Logo

At Assumption University, you can join the pre-law program.

Coursework will provide you with the skills needed to work as a Paralegal or Legal Assistant.

You receive both the practical and theoretical sides of working in the legal field.

If you wish to pursue becoming an attorney, this undergraduate pre-law program will also help you earn a law degree in six years.

You may even have the chance to study abroad if you want, and the school provides resources for Paralegal Studies Certificate programs.

5. University of Massachusetts Lowell (UMass Lowell)

University of Massachusetts Lowell Logo

UMass Lowell offers a Paralegal Studies Certificate Program.

It prepares you to assist lawyers who work in both the private and public sectors.

For instance, you could find work at government offices or corporate legal departments, or third-party law firms after taking this coursework.

You have time to practice what you’re taught in the classroom.

This includes applying ethics and assisting with legal investigations for lawyers and learning all the legal jargon you need to know.

Paralegal Schools in Massachusetts – Summary Table

School Name Address
Boston University Boston, MA 02215
Middlesex Community College 591 Springs Rd, Bedford, MA 01730
Suffolk University 73 Tremont St, Boston, MA 02108
Assumption University 500 Salisbury Street, Worcester, MA, 01609
University of Massachusetts Lowell 220 Pawtucket St, Lowell, MA 01854
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A paralegal just starting out can earn an average yearly income of $65,441.

If you work in this position, you would make anywhere from $57,875 to $75,889 depending on geographical area, cost of living, and experience.

If you continue to enhance your experience with new certificates, you could make more than $81,580 per year.

Look for jobs near you or start browsing Boston, Brookline, Waltham, or Pittsfield.

Also, try Salem.

Annual Salary Range:
Annual Salary by Location:
Location Avg. Annual Salary
Boston $67,769
Worcester $63,336
Springfield $62,403
Lowell $65,561
Cambridge $67,769
Brockton $65,140
New Bedford $63,396
Fall River $63,396
Lynn $67,769
Quincy $67,769

Regional Salary in Massachusetts

Region Employed Avg. Annual Salary Avg. Hourly Pay Top 10% Annual Salary Bottom 10% Annual Salary
Barnstable Town, MA260$64,080$30.81$92,630$33,960
Boston-Cambridge-Nashua, MA-NH5,740$73,910$35.53$105,240$41,400
Leominster-Gardner, MA50$62,270$29.94$94,250$45,740
New Bedford, MA100$61,860$29.74$93,050$39,720
Pittsfield, MA80$60,340$29.01$86,940$40,320
Springfield, MA-CT640$60,270$28.98$94,020$37,430
Worcester, MA-CT390$64,180$30.86$92,120$40,400
* Salary information based on the May 2022 Occupational Employment Statistics (OES) Survey for Paralegals and Legal Assistants, OCC Code 23-2011, BLS.
* Employment conditions in your area may vary.

Frequently Asked Questions

How long does it usually take to get a Paralegal certificate in Massachusetts?

It usually takes about two years.

Some programs allow you to start getting paid while learning, however.

That typically happens within your first year of schooling.

How do you become certified to become a Paralegal in Boston?

Start exploring educational opportunities online and near you.

Review course curriculum and find any coursework that has received ABA approval.

Then, find out if the classes you take will prepare you to take either the NALA CP or ACP certification exams.

After that, register for the classes you think would provide you with the best training and sign up to take the NALA exam that most fit your skill level.

Do you need a certificate to become a MA Paralegal?

Technically, you do not.

However, you will find it much easier to find a job if you prove you have the credentials to operate as a CP, ACP, or another nationally recognized certificate.

Does an MA Paralegal go to court?

You would not represent a client in court.

However, you would make a presence in court if your lawyer asks you to take case notes and serve as an extra set of ears or eyes.

More importantly, you make sure the legal department you work for is prepared to handle a case.

Therefore, you will perform most of your duties before the lawyer you’re assisting even goes to court.

What qualifications must an MA Paralegal have?

You must have the patience to research and read through law documents and example cases.

In addition, some computer proficiency is required for investigative and organizational purposes.

You also must know how to uphold a law practice’s image and exhibit professionalism at all times.

USA Paralegal Schools by State

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