Legal Assistant/Secretary Associate Program

Legal & Law
Combined Hours: 
Course Type: 
Mentor Supported
  • Description
  • Objectives
  • Outline
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Legal Assistants Conserves attorneys time by reading, researching, routing correspondence, reports and legal documents; drafting letters and documents; collecting and analyzing information; organizing client conferences, and attorney meetings. It is imperative that legal assistants have the proper administrative skills as well as understand the law. Our Legal Secretary Associate program is for individuals looking to work in a legal office setting, and teach the necessary skills to perform the job successfully while understanding the law.

Understanding the Law

The US legal system plays an ever-increasing role in our lives. Our Understanding the Law course helps you become engaged in the study of US law by examining how various aspects of law affect individuals.  We use hypothetical and real world examples to illustrate important points of the law and to inspire insight. This course also incorporates extensive coverage of ethical issues, consumer rights, employee rights and family law. Students will discover the fundamental different types of US law, including international and comparative law in order to gain essential knowledge for today's global marketplace. 

Prerequisite(s): None

Legal Assistant (Secretary)

Looking for a challenge? Do you like research and staying organized? Do you enjoy the excitement of a busy office? If so, then you should consider becoming a legal assistant or legal secretary. Legal assistants/secretaries perform clerical duties at law firms and other legal offices. Unlike regular assistants/secretaries, legal assistants require extensive knowledge of legal proceedings and documentation. They may do factual or legal research at all levels of a case and will often organize meetings, appointments and dates for attorneys. Our Legal Assistant/Legal Secretary course will introduce the basic duties of the job and the knowledge necessary to be successful in the field. 

Prerequisite & Recommendation: Student needs to have general secretarial training or experience. We highly recommend that the student also take a course in Understanding the Law to have a very solid background in the legal system. 

** Course Subject to Change.

Understanding the Law

After completing this course, you should be able to:

  • Identify the concepts involved in US law
  • Recall basic classifications of the state and federal court system
  • Define administrative law classifications
  • Differentiate between the elements of torts and contracts
  • Identify how the law relates to consumer rights

Legal Assistant (Secretary)

After completing this course you should be able to:

  • Define the job description of a legal assistant/secretary
  • Identify correct billing, accounting and written communication methods
  • Recognize types of contracts and torts and how to prepare legal documents
  • List the basics of business partnerships, family law and litigation
  • Recall the principles of estate planning and guardianship


Understanding the Law

Understanding the Law Module 1
Introduction to the Law

  • The English Source of U.S. Law
  • Modern Sources of U.S. Law
  • Types & Classifications of Law
  • The Relationship Between Law & Ethics
  • Using Court Cases
  • Constitutional Law
  • Judicial Review
  • Separation of Powers
  • The National Government
  • What is Federalism?
  • The Police Power
  • The Bill of Rights
  • Freedom of Speech & Religion
  • Unreasonable Searches
  • Due Process of Law
  • Affirmative Action
  • The Right to Privacy

Understanding the Law Module 2
The Court System & The Attorney

  • What is Trial Court?
  • Appellate Court
  • Understanding Jurisdiction
  • The State Court System
  • The Federal Court System
  • Trial Proceedings
  • The Adversarial System
  • Attorneys-at-Law
  • Professional Ethics
  • Hire & Fire an Attorney
  • Legal Malpractice
  • Unauthorized Practice of Law
  • Alternative Dispute Resolution

Understanding the Law Module 3
Administrative Law & Crimes

  • What is Administrative Law?
  • History of U.S. Administrative Law
  • Administrative Agencies
  • Areas of Administrative Law
  • Agency Power, Process, & Action
  • Limits of Agency Power
  • What is a Crime?
  • Parties to a Crime
  • Corpus Delicti
  • Felony, Misdemeanor, or Infraction
  • Crimes Against the Person
  • Crimes Against Property
  • Defenses to Crimes
  • Statute of Limitations
  • Procedures in a Criminal Trial
  • Parole, Probation, & Clemency

Understanding the Law Module 4
Torts & Contracts

  • What are Torts?
  • Torts by Intentional Conduct
  • Torts by Negligent Behavior
  • Strict Liability Torts
  • Damages & the Collection of Damages
  • Contracts: Enforceable Agreements
  • How are Contracts Classified?
  • Requisites of a Valid Contract
  • Third Parties in Contracts
  • Discharged Contracts
  • Breach of Contract
  • Individual Consumer Contracts
  • Warranty Protection

Understanding the Law Module 5
Application of Law to the Individual

  • Family Law
  • Marriage Laws
  • Legal Consequences of Marriage
  • Laws Governing Parenthood
  • Protection of Minors
  • Termination of Marriage
  • Family Law Contracts
  • Motor Vehicle Law
  • Owning a Motor Vehicle
  • Driving a Motor Vehicle
  • Purchasing Automobile Insurance
  • Acquiring Ownership of Personal Property
  • Will or Inheritance
  • Mislaid, Lost, & Abandoned Property

Understanding the Law Module 6
Renters, Landlords & Employee Rights

  • Types of Leases
  • Landlord-Tenant Relationship
  • Legal Remedies for Landlords
  • Legal Remedies for Tenants
  • Employee Rights
  • Worker Laws
  • Legal Classification of Employees
  • Discrimination Laws
  • Employee Duties
  • Benefits for Employees
  • Rights Regarding Unions

Understanding the Law Module 7
Consumer Rights, Family Law and Wills

  • Consumer Rights and Protection
  • Consumer Privacy
  • Consumer Protection
  • Federal Government Involvement in Family Law
  • What is Marriage?
  • Legal Consequences of Marriage
  • Laws Govern Parenthood
  • Divorce
  • Family Laws and Contracts
  • What is Estate Planning?
  • Tax Burdens Reduced or Avoided
  • Matters Concerning Wills
  • Matters Concerning Probate
  • Living Wills & Advance Directives 

**Outlines are subject to change, as courses and materials are updated.**

Legal Assistant (Secretary)

Legal Secretary / Legal Assistant Module 1
The Law Office

  • The Lawyer’s Assistant
  • The Career of a Lawyer’s Assistant
  • NALS Certification
  • Ethical Considerations
  • Client-Lawyer Relationship
  • Law Firms and Associations
  • Public Service
  • Maintaining Integrity
  • Office Organization
  • Interoffice Relationships
  • Client Relations
  • Public Relations

Legal Secretary / Legal Assistant Module 2
Computers, Billing and Basic Accounting Procedures

  • Computers in the Law Office
  • Operating Systems
  • Document Management
  • Understanding Billing
  • Debits and Credits
  • Time Entries
  • Cost Entries
  • Handling the Firm’s Checking Account
  • Payroll
  • Computing Interest

Legal Secretary / Legal Assistant Module 3
Written Communication

  • The Basics of English Grammar
  • Review of Sentence Structure
  • Punctuation
  • Capitalization
  • Abbreviations
  • Number Usage
  • Word Division
  • Writing Letters, Memos, and Messages
  • Parts of a Business Letter
  • Forms of Address

Legal Secretary / Legal Assistant Module 4
Legal Documents, Law Library and The Courts

  • Preparing Legal Documents
  • Legal Citations
  • Legal Research
  • Hierarchy of Legal Authority
  • Legal Texts
  • History of the Law
  • The American Judicial System
  • Dual System of Courts
  • Terminology of the Court
  • Court Officers

Legal Secretary / Legal Assistant Module 5
Administrative Agencies and Litigation

  • Federal and State Agencies
  • Opening the Litigation File
  • Before the Suit is Filed
  • Pleadings
  • Request for Jury Trial
  • Mediations
  • Stipulations
  • Trial Notebooks
  • Settlement
  • Appeals 
  • Billing

Legal Secretary / Legal Assistant Module 6
Contracts, Torts and Criminal Law Procedures

  • The Statute of Frauds
  • Types of Contracts
  • Discharge of Contracts
  • Kinds of Torts
  • Initial Client Interview
  • Sources of Criminal Law
  • Classes of Crime
  • Misdemeanor Cases
  • Felony Cases
  • Post-trial Proceedings

Legal Secretary / Legal Assistant Module 7
Family Law and Business Organizations

  • Influence of Uniform Acts
  • Marriage
  • Divorce
  • Procedures of Termination of Marriage
  • Uncontested Proceedings
  • Corporations
  • Corporate Structure and Operation
  • Incorporation Process
  • Partnerships
  • Limited Liability Company

Legal Secretary / Legal Assistant Module 8
Real Estate and Estate Planning

  • History of Real Estate Law
  • Evidence of Title to Real Estate
  • Instruments of Conveyance
  • The Real Estate Transaction
  • Preparation of Deeds
  • Terminology in Estate Planning
  • Characteristics of a Will
  • Types of Wills
  • Preparation of Wills

Legal Secretary / Legal Assistant Module 9
Guardianships and Bankruptcy 

  • The Uniform Probate Code
  • Functions of Estate Administration
  • Identification of Assets
  • Personal Representative
  • Probate Procedures
  • The Bankruptcy Code
  • Bankruptcy Courts and Jurisdiction
  • Filing a Bankruptcy
  • The Debtor’s Estate
  • Discharge of Debts

**Outlines are subject to change, as courses and materials are updated.**

Ed4Career is committed to being both environmentally conscious and making it easier for you to study! We’re making your education mobile! All of our textbooks are now provided as eTextbooks*. You can access them on your laptop, tablet, or mobile device and can study anytime, anywhere.

The move away from physical books to eTextbooks means you get the latest, most up-to-date version available. This also makes your training more accessible, so you can study anywhere you have your phone or tablet. The best part is that all materials are included in your training cost so there are NO extra fees for books!**

*A few courses still have physical materials.

Understanding the Law

Upon successful completion of our Understanding the Law course, students will be prepared, in part, to sit for the NALA (National Association of Legal Assistants) certification exam to become a Certified Paralegal (CP). MUST fulfill additional requirements per NALA to sit for the exam.

Legal Assistant (Secretary)

Upon successful completion of our Legal Secretary course, students will be prepared for an entry-level position as a Legal Secretary in a Law office setting and will be prepared, in part, to sit for the NALS national certification exam to become an Accredited Legal Professional (ALP). This exam also requires that you have one year of general office experience. Each state has specific requirements, we highly recommend you check with your state.

** Certification exams are not included in the cost of the course.**

Internet Connection

  • Broadband or High-Speed - DSL, Cable, and Wireless Connections

*Dial-Up internet connections will result in a diminished online experience. Classroom pages may load slowly and viewing large audio and video files may not be possible.

Hardware Requirements

  • Processor - 2GHz Processor or Higher
  • Memory - 1 GB RAM Minimum Recommended


PC Software Requirements

  • Operating Systems - Windows 7 or higher
  • Microsoft Office 2013 or higher. Also, you could use a general Word Processing application to save and open Microsoft Office formats (.doc, .docx, .xls, .xlsx, .ppt, .pptx)
  • Internet Browsers - Google Chrome is highly recommended
    • Cookies MUST be enabled
    • Pop-ups MUST be allowed (Pop-up Blocker disabled)
  • The Kindle Reader App or VitalSource Bookshelf App are needed for many of our courses (No special equipment needed. This can be downloaded for FREE onto your computer.)
  • PowerPoint Viewer (if you do not have PowerPoint)
  • Adobe PDF Reader
  • QuickTime, Windows Media Player &/or Real Player


MAC Software Requirements

  • Operating Systems - Mac OS x 10 or higher with Windows
  • Mac office programs or a Word Processing application to save and open Microsoft Office formats (.doc, .docx, .xls, .xlsx, .ppt, .pptx)
  • Internet Browsers- Google Chrome is highly recommended
    • Cookies MUST be enabled
    • Pop-ups MUST be allowed (Pop-up Blocker disabled)
  • The Kindle Reader App or VitalSource Bookshelf App are needed for many of our courses (No special equipment needed. This can be downloaded for FREE onto your computer.)
  • PowerPoint Viewer (if you do not have PowerPoint)
  • Adobe PDF Reader
  • Apple QuickTime Media Player