A general introduction to the field of legal assistance with specific emphasis on the variety of tasks performed by paralegals in different employment settings, as well as the ethical obligations of paralegals.
Paralegal Studies Courses
PLS 101 - Intro to Paralegal Studies
PLS 111 - Legal Research and Writing I
This foundation course is an introduction to the field of legal research and writing. It provides students with an overview of the legal research process, the various legal source materials—both primary and secondary—and the basics of drafting a legal memorandum.
PLS 115 - Legal Technology
An introduction to the use of computers and legal specialty software programs in the contemporary law office and other legal environments. The course will examine applications involving office management, document management, electronic discovery and trial presentation. The course will also address legal ethical considerations in the use of computer technology.
PLS 121 - Civil Litigation I
This foundation course in civil litigation for paralegals provides students with an overview of the entire litigation process. The course considers the civil court system, client interviews and the drafting of documents such as initial pleadings and responses. Students are provided with an overview of discovery and civil trial procedures.
PLS 211 - Legal Research and Writing II
Provides in-depth practice in legal analysis of primary and secondary legal sources, drafting of a wide variety of legal documents and instruction in the use of computer databases in legal research. Course limited to Paralegal Studies degree and Paralegal Studies proficiency certificate candidates only.
PLS 215 - Electronic Discovery
This course will provide an in-depth treatment of both the theoretical and practical aspects of the electronic discovery lifecycle, including the preservation, collection, review, production and analysis of electronically stored information in litigation and investigations. The course will examine aspects of electronic discovery case law and federal and state procedural rules, as well as the ethical guidelines relevant to this evolving field.
PLS 221 - Civil Litigation II
PLS 231 - Family Law
An in-depth, overall introduction to the practice of family law in which practical and analytical skills are developed. Areas studied include legal ethics, marriage, divorce, division of property, alimony, child custody, child support, protection from abuse, premarital and separation agreements, adoption and other topics.
PLS 241 - Tort Law
This is an advanced course in tort law. It involves personal injury litigation and trial practice, and includes principles of tort law such as negligence, intentional torts, strict liability, product liability and limited tort options in automobile insurance.
PLS 251 - Real Estate Law for Paralegals
The course engages students in analysis of legal concepts and procedures related to real estate transactions, such as consideration of deeds, the use of notes and mortgages in real estate financing, title examinations, title insurance, and real estate closings, as well as critical examination of relevant ethical considerations involving individuals and institutions who, as clients, expect paralegals to aid in the solution of legal problems.
PLS 255 - Business Organizations for Paralegals
This course examines the legal concepts relating to the different business formats such as sole proprietorships, partner-ships, limited liability companies and corporations. The course will specifically focus upon the skills such as drafting, legal research and analysis, which are critical to success in this specialty field.
PLS 261 - Wills, Trusts and Estate Administration
This course provides an in-depth introduction to the tasks performed by paralegals in estate planning and probate of a decedent's estate.
PLS 265 - Intellectual Property
This is an advanced course for paralegals in the area of intellectual property. The course considers the legal protection of all forms of intellectual property by means of patents, copyrights and trademarks. Students are provided with an understanding of the legal processes involved in the protection of intellectual property and the paralegal's role in those processes.
PLS 271 - Bankruptcy Law
This course examines the legal concepts relating to creditor and debtor rights under Title 11 of the United States Code, commonly referred to as the Bankruptcy Code. Students will learn about the various chapters of the Bankruptcy Code and its major sections, specifically focusing on consumer bankruptcy cases and the analysis of client interviews. Students will develop skills necessary to prepare a bankruptcy petition and its accompanying schedules and statements as well as other documents and motions commonly filed with the court in bankruptcy practice.
PLS 275 - Employment Law
An in-depth introduction to the laws governing the employer-employee relationship and the tasks performed by paralegals in employment law.
PLS 281 - Environmental Law
An introductory analysis of federal, state and local environmental laws and regulations and their application in the practice of environmental law.
PLS 285 - Immigration Law
Immigration Law will provide an overview of immigration law in the United States, with an emphasis on the practical application of that law in a law firm or corporate environment. Students will learn the skills needed to deal with a deadline-oriented caseload for a diverse clientele. Topics will include the basics of immigration employment and family-based immigration, refugee law and the procedures for applying for citizenship and asylum.
PLS 295 - Legal Internship
This course provides students with practical experience by applying the knowledge learned throughout the Paralegal Studies program in a work environment for a minimum of 96 hours during a semester. In weekly discussions with peers and the course instructor, students explore career options, develop confidence as professionals, and acquire job hunting and career development skills.