Legal Office Management Associate Degree

Legal office management programs teach legal theories and procedures in addition to administrative skills. This article gives you a preview of typical accounting and administrative courses in an associate's program, and shows you what salary you can expect to make as a legal secretary or paralegal. Schools offering Legal Administrative Assistant degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

How Do I Get into Associate's Degree Programs in Legal Office Management?

Associate's degree programs in legal office management, also called legal office administration, require you to have at least a high school diploma to be considered for admission. If you don't have a high school diploma, some schools may accept a GED instead. If you choose to enroll in an online program, expect to meet minimum technical requirements and have access to the Internet. If you want to prepare for this program in high school, consider taking classes in writing, history, business, computer science or mathematics.

PrerequisitesHigh school diploma or GED
Common CoursesLegal composition, business law, business document editing, criminal law
Career OptionsLegal secretary, paralegal
Median Salary (2018)*$46,360 for legal secretaries, $50,940 for paralegals and legal assistants
Job Outlook (2016-2026)*19.1% decline for legal secretaries, 15% growth for paralegals and legal assistants

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

What Is the Curriculum Like?

In an associate's degree program in legal office administration, you can expect to learn about writing, research and legal office procedures. You might also learn about specific legal theories or practices, including legal document formatting, legal research, ethics or courtroom procedures. For example, the following are class topics you might find in the curriculum:

  • Business law
  • Management
  • Business document editing
  • Desktop publishing applications
  • Legal composition
  • Keyboarding for accuracy
  • Accounting applications
  • Criminal law
  • Legal office procedures

What Jobs Are Available?

With an associate's degree in legal office administration, you could pursue entry-level careers in legal offices. For example, you could work as a legal secretary. Legal secretaries help lawyers prepare for court by assisting in research, formatting documents, finding legal precedents and doing general clerical work. You might also find a job as a paralegal. Paralegals, also called legal assistants, help lawyers in hearings, arraignments and corporate meetings by investigating facts, identifying relevant laws and gathering materials that might help an argument.

How Much Money Can I Make?

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), secretaries and administrative assistants working in legal offices earned a median annual salary of $38,880 as of May 2018; top-earning legal administrative assistants made upwards of $64,230, while the lowest-paid earned $24,690 or less (www.bls.gov). For paralegals and legal assistants, the BLS reported a median annual salary of $50,940 during the same time, with the top 10% earning $82,050 or more.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

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  • Purdue University Global

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  • Colorado Christian University

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  • New England College

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  • Post University

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  • Miller-Motte College

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  • Saint Leo University

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  • Yuba College

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  • Milwaukee Area Technical College

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