11 Best Paralegal Programs in Virginia

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Paralegals are legal professionals who assist attorneys in corporate law, insurance companies, private firms, and other legal environments.

They help lawyers during trials, acquire affidavits used as evidence, gather case facts, draft professional documents, perform legal research, and organize and maintain files.

For those interested in entering the legal field without becoming a lawyer, the minimum of an associate degree is required, but a bachelor’s degree in the field is recommended.

Depending on your educational path and career goals, a training program can be completed in two- or four years.

Before enrolling in the school closest to your home, finding the best paralegal programs in Virginia is significant.

Keep reading to learn more!

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1 Brightpoint Community College


Enrolled students can access over 75 programs in a supportive, personal, and friendly environment.

In-state tuition at BCC is $164, including all related fees, and the school is Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges-accredited to award certificates and associate degrees.

BCC offers a paralegal studies certificate for those with bachelor’s degrees and looking for a career change.

Courses / Programs Offered

The program teaches students how to write a law memorandum, conduct legal research, and evaluate a case brief.

Other foundational skills include legal writing and research, college composition, an introduction to the law and legal assistants, and computer applications and digital literacy.

The school requires completion of 18 credits to graduate, which takes approximately one year.

For more information, call 804-796-4000 or stop by 13101 Route 1, Chester, Virginia 23831, to speak with an academic advisor about your educational goals.

Contact Information

2 Germanna Community College


Located in Locus Grove, Germanna Community College offers countless academic programs that can be taken in-class, online, or hybrid.

The school also has transfer degrees and excellent online accelerated programs for those who want to enter the workforce quickly.

Germanna has an online associate degree program in the administration of justice, preparing students for various legal career paths, including as a paralegal.

The school also has a one-year certificate that bachelor’s degree transfers can take.

Students should expect to pay $169 per credit hour for in-state students.

Courses / Programs Offered

Coursework in both educational paths covers principles of criminal investigation, legal procedures, evidence, criminal law, and ethics and the criminal justice professional, which outlines typical daily responsibilities.

Students interested in pursuing the Germanna associate degree program should call 540-891-3000 or stop by the campus at 2130 Germanna Highway, Locust Grove, VA 22508, to speak to an advisor.

Contact Information

  • Address: 2130 Germanna Hwy, Locust Grove, VA 22508
  • Phone: 540-891-3000
  • Website: Visit School Website

3 Hampton University


With an exceptional 15-to-1 student-to-faculty ratio, Hampton University, a private college in Hampton, Virginia, offers 97 programs and holds accreditation from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

As a result, the school provides all degrees, from certificates to doctoral levels.

One of the certificate programs is in paralegal studies, which helps students hit the ground running with an entry-level paralegal position.

Courses / Programs Offered

The 18-credit hour certificate covers various topics, including criminal law, legal research and writing, ethics, and the law in society.

Students also choose from electives like bankruptcy, domestic relations, real estate, personal injury, and torts.

If you’re interested in attending Hampton University’s certificate in paralegal studies program, call 757-788-8968!

Contact Information

4 James Madison University


Featuring over 130 programs with 70 majors, James Madison University is a top-notch school on the East Coast that’s Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges-accredited for bachelor’s degrees and above.

The school has a non-credit certificate created for existing legal professionals to improve their experience and training.

The program is offered entirely online and combines practical and theoretical sides of the legal system.

Twice per week, students participate in instructor-led, live video classes.

Courses / Programs Offered

Students taking JMU’s certificate program will learn more about contract law, civil litigation, legal writing and research, and an introduction to the law, ethics, and the American legal system.

Given that the certificate can be earned in a few months, this is an excellent option for adult learners with a bachelor’s degree in another field who want to begin their legal career or those who wish to refine their skills.

Located in Harrisonburg, aspiring paralegals are directed to visit the campus to discuss educational goals with an academic advisor or call 540-568-6211.

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5 Laurel Ridge Community College


Featuring over 60 fast-track career training programs and 75 certificate and associate degrees, LRCC has a paralegal studies program that prepares students for non-attorney entry-level work.

The program requires a two-year commitment to graduate and award graduates an associate degree.

Courses / Programs Offered

Students enrolled in LRCC’s associate of paralegal studies program will learn about probate and estate planning, family law, ethics, legal transactions, torts, legal writing and research, computer applications and digital literacy, and an introduction to the field.

If you want to learn more about the program and live near Middletown, Virginia, stop by the school at 173 Skirmisher Lane or dial 800-906-5322 to speak to an academic advisor.

Contact Information

  • Address: M6J9+H6, 6480 College St, Warrenton, VA 20187
  • Phone: 540-351-1505
  • Website: Visit School Website

6 Marymount University


As a co-educational, independently owned Catholic University, Marymount offers doctoral, bachelor’s, and master’s degrees in various fields.

In the paralegal field, the school boasts a Bachelor of Arts in an undergraduate paralegal studies certificate, a Bachelor of Arts in paralegal studies, and a business law specialty, all of which prepare students to work as paralegals in law agencies, private firms, and corporate law departments.

Courses / Programs Offered

Foundational courses for all three educational paths include procedure for business electives, public law, legal writing and research, general practice, civil litigation, an introduction to the legal system, and business law.

Students interested in one of the three paths should speak with an academic advisor by calling 703-522-5600 or visiting the school at 2807 North Gleve Road, Arlington, Virginia 22207.

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7 Mountain Empire Community College


According to the college’s catalog, MRCC offers two non-attorney legal programs: paralegal studies and legal office assisting.

Both were developed to prepare graduates for working in a law environment.

The main difference is that the paralegal studies degree allows graduates to work directly with attorneys by assisting them with cases, whereas legal office assisting prepares students for legal office management.

Courses / Programs Offered

Both programs have similar core classes, which include business, criminal, and family law, legal office procedures, legal writing and research, ethics, introduction to the legal assistant and law, and the American legal system.

Students must also complete general education courses and specialized legal courses as electives.

If you want to pursue either of these degrees, call the MECC administrators at 276-523-2400 or visit the school at 3441 Mountain Empire Road, Big Stone Gap, Virginia 24219.

Contact Information

  • Address: 3441 Mountain Empire Rd, Big Stone Gap, VA 24219
  • Phone: 276-523-2400
  • Website: Visit School Website

8 New River Community College


NRCC has an associate degree in paralegal administrative support specialization, which permits students to move into paralegal and other legal professions.

The curriculum was developed to deliver technology education and specialized administrative support within the legal field.

Since it’s an associate degree, the program requires around two years, but the school encourages an internship with a local law firm.

Courses / Programs Offered

The curriculum combines instruction on various subject matters needed for competence in the legal field.

These include discovery practice, trial preparation, legal research and writing, family law, torts, writing for business, records management, college composition, and the American legal system.

Students interested in pursuing this degree offering from NRCC should call 540-674-3600 or stop by the school at 5251 College Drive, Dublin, Virginia 24084, for more information.

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9 Northern Virginia Community College


NVCC delivers a safe, flexible, high-quality educational experience that students can enjoy from home or in a classroom.

One such program is the associate degree in paralegal studies, developed for students seeking to enter the legal field without becoming lawyers and who want to become proficient in legal writing, research, and analysis to support attorneys.

As an American Bar Association-approved paralegal studies program, students must maintain a C or higher throughout their coursework to graduate.

Courses / Programs Offered

Although specialization electives are mandatory, students must take foundational courses like criminal, family, and real estate law, college composition, introduction to the paralegal assistant, legal research, the law of evidence, trial practice, probate, and estate planning.

Students interested in pursuing this degree are welcome to stop by the campus and speak with an academic advisor to discuss educational and career goals.

For locals, administrators are at Bisdorf Building Room AA 134, 5000 Dawes Avenue, Alexandria, Virginia 22311, to schedule an appointment.

Contact Information

  • Address: 8333 Little River Turnpike, Annandale, VA 22003
  • Phone: 703-323-3000
  • Website: Visit School Website

10 Reynolds Community College


As a Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges-accredited institution, RCC offers numerous academic programs across its four campuses: The Kitchens, Goochland, Downtown, and Perham Road.

One such program in the school’s portfolio is the paralegal studies option, which prepares students for the challenging and exciting legal field.

The program includes day and evening classes and a hybrid schedule with synchronous lectures.

Classes are available during all three semesters, and students can attend part-time or full-time.

Courses / Programs Offered

Within the synchronous lectures, students will learn how to use computer software for legal research, how to draft legal documentation, tips for interviewing clients and gathering facts, proper evidence processing, and ethics of legal issues.

Students must select a specialization and demonstrate knowledge of the correct legal citation throughout the coursework.

Located in Richmond, students who wish to meet with an academic advisor to discuss their career goals can stop by the campus at 1651 East Parham Road or dial 804-371-3000.

Contact Information

11 Virginia Commonwealth University


VCU boasts one of the best paralegal programs in the state, offering a paralegal studies certificate.

The program is entirely online, and the school offers discounts for active military members and their families, reservists, and veterans.

The program only requires a six-month time commitment and was developed for students with bachelor’s degrees in another field.

Courses / Programs Offered

Coursework in VCU’s program includes an introduction to law, the American legal system, civil litigation, personal injury, torts, contract law, business law, and legal writing and research.

Students interested in learning more about the program should call 804-828-1322 or email ocpe@vcu.edu.

Contact Information

Schools Summary Table

Rank School
#1 Brightpoint Community College
#2 Germanna Community College
#3 Hampton University
#4 James Madison University
#5 Laurel Ridge Community College
#6 Marymount University
#7 Mountain Empire Community College
#8 New River Community College
#9 Northern Virginia Community College
#10 Reynolds Community College
#11 Virginia Commonwealth University

Paralegal Salary Information

The average annual compensation for a U.S. paralegal is $58,227, with pay ranging from $38,186 to $88,786.

Virginia paralegals have a yearly salary of $52,794, ranging from $37,000 to $75,332, not including benefits or bonuses.

Annual Salary Range:
Item Percent

Average Salary in Virginia

City Name Salary
Virginia Beach $64,119
Norfolk $63,154
Chesapeake $63,073
Richmond $66,252
Newport News $63,502
Hampton $63,502
Alexandria $74,663
Portsmouth $63,154
Roanoke $62,007
Lynchburg $61,517

Regional Salary

Region Employed Avg. Annual Salary Avg. Hourly Pay Top 10% Annual Salary Bottom 10% Annual Salary
Blacksburg-Christiansburg-Radford, VA80$46,420$22.32$59,490$31,280
Charlottesville, VA240$56,460$27.14$72,240$36,760
Harrisonburg, VA100$49,660$23.88$65,150$31,890
Lynchburg, VA180$46,650$22.43$62,870$30,570
Richmond, VA2,300$56,680$27.25$78,720$36,610
Roanoke, VA440$50,480$24.27$64,210$30,810
Staunton-Waynesboro, VA50$53,880$25.9$63,920$31,200
Virginia Beach-Norfolk-Newport News, VA-NC1,880$51,370$24.7$66,590$33,150
Winchester, VA-WV120$51,440$24.73$65,080$31,290
* 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.

Paralegal Programs by State

Chelsea Wilson

About Chelsea Wilson

Chelsea Wilson is the Community Relations Manager for Washington University School of Law’s distance learning LLM degree program, which provides foreign trained attorneys with the opportunity to earn a Master of Laws degree from a top-tier American university from anywhere in the world.

One Response to 11 Best Paralegal Programs in Virginia

  1. Avatar
    Emma James #

    These programs offer a fantastic blend of theoretical knowledge and practical skills, which is crucial in the competitive field of law.

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