Law Society of Scotland Accredited Paralegal

The Law Society of Scotland Accredited Paralegal scheme is a voluntary accreditation scheme for paralegals working in Scotland. It provides a defined professional status and a career path for paralegals. Accreditation is achieved by demonstrating an ability to work to a specified set of standards.

If you are a paralegal with more than two years' experience in one of the twelve practice areas you can apply to become an accredited paralegal (see the waiver route below). If you have less than two years' experience but hold the necessary qualifications you will undergo a year of training before you gain Accredited Paralegal status. 

How to become an Accredited Paralegal

(1)    Waiver Route

The waiver route is available to all applicants who are presently working as a paralegal or equivalent under a specific area of practice and have been for a minimum of two years. You must comply with all of the required competencies and must complete at least 10 hours of continuing professional development (CPD) each year. A list of the competencies are available here.

Criteria for the waiver route;

  1. You must have been working as a paralegal or equivalent for a minimum of two years under a specific area of practice and comply with all of the required competencies for that area of practice
  2. You must be currently working in one of the relevant areas of practice
  3. You must be working under the supervision of a Scottish solicitor

(2)    Trainee Route

It takes one year of training to become an Accredited Paralegal.  During this time you will demonstrate competence in both a specific area of practice and general paralegal work and you will be expected to complete at least 10 hours of continuing professional development (CPD) each year. A list of the competencies are available here.

Criteria for the trainee route;

  1. You must hold a relevant qualification such as a paralegal qualification, a HNC/HND in law/legal studies or a LLB/BA in law
  2. You must be working in one of the relevant area of practice
  3. You must be working under the supervision of a Scottish solicitor

Joining Information

You can join at any time by completing the application form here. The joining fee is currently £110 and is payable once your application has been approved by the Accredited Paralegal committee. This fee can be paid by cheque, bank transfer or credit/ debit card.

Why join?

  • Career enhancement opportunities, identifying you as an Accredited Paralegal with significant expertise in your area of law.
  • Career satisfaction: it allows you to work towards and achieve set standards in your career.
  • Career development: the opportunity to develop your skills and knowledge by undertaking CPD.
  • Membership of the Scottish Paralegal Association, an organisation serving the interests of Paralegals.
  • Access to the confidential Professional Practice helpline.
  • Free access to the confidential helpline, LawCare.
  • A free subscription to the Journal magazine.
  • Access to lifestyle benefits.

If you are interested in finding our more about the Accredited Paralegal Scheme please do not hesitate to contact Darren Kerr or Janet Rieu-Clarke at the Law Society.

 

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