5 Best Paralegal Schools in New York City, NY

New York City paralegals have fast-paced careers working in a variety of legal environments.

Legal Support Specialists find lucrative careers in law firms, corporate legal departments, governments, and non-profit agencies.

New York City Seal

If you have been thinking about becoming a paralegal in NY, take the first step by learning more about the profession.

Learn more about paralegal job descriptions, what it takes to become a paralegal in New York, and get information on some of the best paralegal training programs in the city in the guide below! 

Paralegal Job Duties in New York

The primary role of a New York City paralegal is to provide direct legal support for licensed attorneys and judicial officials.

Legal assistants are trained to understand legal terminology and file time-sensitive court documents like motions, affidavits, pleas, and legal briefs.

New York paralegals work under the supervision of licensed legal professionals to interview clients, witnesses, and other parties relevant to legal cases.

They spend a great deal of time preparing documents and electronic filing and tracking legal documents and court cases via state, local, and federal filing systems.

Today’s paralegals are indispensable members of legal teams who organize legal files, manage legal documents, maintain legal databases, and schedule court appearances.

Best Paralegal Schools in New York

Local colleges, universities, and vocational schools offer some of New York City’s best paralegal training.

These schools train students to become proficient in the legal system, judicial practices, ethics, and community service.

The best paralegal schools below award paralegal degrees and paralegal certificates in New York.

These comprehensive training programs prepare graduates for national certification exams and entry-level employment in the local community.

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Get information on Paralegal programs by entering your zip code and request enrollment information.

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1 Bronx Community College

Bronx Community College has a certificate and associate paralegal studies program for local students seeking employment in local law offices, courtrooms, and corporate legal departments.

BCC requires students to complete a combination of general education courses, legal studies, and paralegal electives that prepare them to begin their entry-level legal careers.

This hybrid program offers online and in-person learning support from instructors who teach students legal terminology, drafting and interpreting legal documents, trial preparation, and client support.

Courses Offered 

  • Legal Interviewing and Investigation
  • Legal Research
  • Legal Correspondence
  • Business Organizations
  • Family Law
  • Landlord Tenant Advocacy

Contact Information

  • Address: 2155 University Avenue, Bronx, New York - 10453
  • Phone: 718-289-5895
  • Website: Visit School Website

2 New York City College of Technology

New Yorkers seeking to start legal careers can take paralegal studies classes at the New York City College of Technology.

NYCCT offers two options for paralegal education: an associate’s and a bachelor’s degree program.

Students who complete the associate’s program become eligible for national certification and entry-level legal employment in New York.

Bachelor’s level students who complete the program are eligible to apply for admission to law school.

Courses Offered 

  • Legal Terminology
  • Advanced Legal Research
  • Philosophy of Law
  • Legal Technology
  • Legal Elective
  • General Studies – Liberal Arts

Contact Information

  • Address: 300 Jay Street, Brooklyn, New York - 11201
  • Phone: 718-260-5000
  • Website: Visit School Website

3 Long Island University

Long Island University operates an American Bar Association-approved paralegal studies certificate program in its 328-hour program, which comprises two semesters of hybrid education.

Students take classes online as they work towards earning paralegal certification via the NALA of the NFPA.

LIU offers its programs in the Spring, Fall, and Summer.

This comprehensive legal studies program readies graduates for certification, entry-level employment, and entry into many pre-law programs for those who want to continue their legal education beyond the certificate level.

Courses Offered 

  • Introduction to Law
  • Real Estate Law
  • Legal Ethics
  • Business Organizations
  • Criminal Law
  • Matrimonial Law
  • Torts

Contact Information

  • Address: 1 University Plaza, Brooklyn, New York - 11201
  • Phone: 516-299-2919
  • Website: Visit School Website

4 St. Johns University

St. John’s University offers three options for students to get a paralegal education.

Paralegal trainees can earn a minor, associate, or bachelor’s degree.

This program highlights critical areas of substantive law and procedure and teaches legal office workers how to conduct legal research, legal writing skills for drafting documents, motions, and pleas, and a variety of entry-level legal skills that allow students to work under the supervision of locally licensed attorneys in law firms and in courtrooms.

Courses Offered 

  • Introduction to Legal Studies
  • Legal Research and Writing I and II
  • Intellectual Property Law
  • Litigation Practice
  • Employment Law
  • Contracts

Contact Information

  • Address: 8000 Utopia Parkway, Queens, New York - 11439
  • Phone: 718-990-2000
  • Website: Visit School Website

5 Touro College

New York-based paralegal students can get their education through Touro College’s New York School of Career & Applied Sciences.

This flexible hybrid program offers self-paced instruction, instructor-led classes, and on-campus classes.

Program graduates will earn the Associate of Science degree in Paralegal Studies.

The paralegal curriculum includes an introduction to the profession, legal and ethical processes, and legal research.

Students who want to specialize in a specific area of practice can take electives for civil litigation, real property law, or wills, trusts, and estates.

Courses Offered 

  • Introduction to Paralegal Studies
  • Family Law
  • Legal Research
  • Criminal Law
  • Introduction to Law and Ethics
  • Legal Writing

Contact Information

  • Address: 3 Times Square, New York, New York - 10036
  • Phone: 212-463-0400
  • Website: Visit School Website

Schools Summary Table

Rank School
#1 Bronx Community College
#2 New York City College of Technology
#3 Long Island University
#4 St. Johns University
#5 Touro College

Paralegal Salary Information

If you’re wondering how much New York paralegals make, you’ll be happy to learn that these highly skilled legal support professionals make well-paying salaries that can add up to more than $90,000.00 per year when working in a variety of legal environments, including private law firms and local court systems.

The average salary for certified paralegals working in the Big Apple is $79,870.00.

Paralegals on the lower end of the salary scale make just over $70,000.00 per year.

Annual Salary Range:
Item Percent

Average Salary in New York, NY

City Name Salary
New York, NY $79,870

How to Become a Paralegal in New York City

If you’ve been thinking about becoming a paralegal in NYC and you need help figuring out where to start, this is definitely the guide for you!

Follow the steps below to become a certified paralegal and have a high-powered career in the Big Apple. 

Step #1. – Finish High School and Meet Age Requirements

Begin your paralegal career by completing high school or earning a GED.

Most paralegal training programs require students to be at least 18 years old and have proof of graduation.

Step #2. – Learn About Paralegal Certifications

New York is one of the few states that doesn’t require paralegals to have an occupational license or certification.

Local employers prefer to hire candidates with many years of substantive experience in the field or legal professionals who are certified by NALA, the NFPA.

Step #3. – Research Local Paralegal Schools

Research local paralegal schools to find out which programs meet your needs for budget, online or in-person instruction, and individual learning style.

Most New York City paralegal programs are available in web-based formats, via traditional in-person classes, and through a combination of hybrid, online, and offline learning.

Step #4. – Complete A Certification-Based Paralegal Studies Program

Most local employers will give preference to paralegal job applicants who demonstrate competency in the career through a combination of education and hands-on experience.

Legal employers prefer to hire credentialed legal assistants who have earned national certification from one of the top recognized agencies.

Choose a comprehensive paralegal program that provides certification-based training and meets the American Bar Association standards for paralegal training. 

Step #5. – Apply for Paralegal Certification

Becoming a certified paralegal in New York City is an extensive process that requires candidates to get paralegal education and hands-on training experience and apply for certification through a national certifier.

Graduates with paralegal degrees and certification programs become eligible to complete the last step in the certification process by taking the national exam administered by the NFPA or NALA.

Legal associate candidates who complete their certification exams with a passing score will earn the designated credential that proves their competency and experience in the field to employers and colleagues.

Degrees, Certificates, and Experience-Based Options for New York Paralegals

When you’re ready to begin your paralegal career in New York, it is essential to choose the program that best aligns with your needs.

The following are examples of paralegal training programs and a brief overview of what to expect.

Associate Degree in Paralegal Studies

Legal support specialists who earn an associate in paralegal studies typically complete a two-year legal studies program that includes a legal curriculum, general education courses in liberal arts, and clinical experience.

Bachelor’s Degree in Paralegal Studies

Paralegals seeking a bachelor’s degree should prepare to spend three to four years in an intensive training program.

Bachelors level students gain a comprehensive paralegal education that readies them for certification through national agencies, entry-level employment with local legal employers, and admission to local area law schools upon completion of all application requirements and official acceptance into law school.

Graduate from an Accredited Law School

The rules of substantive legal experience and education vary by state.

Most certification authorities will recognize a paralegal who has graduated from an accredited law school as a viable candidate for certification.

Substantive Legal Experience

NALA and the NFPA provide special certification options for working paralegals with substantive legal experience.

Visit the credentialing website to learn more about what qualifies as substantive legal experience for New York City paralegals.

Frequently Asked Questions

Do I Need a License to Work as a Paralegal in New York, NY?


Paralegals aren’t required to have an occupational license to work in New York.

Who Certifies Paralegals in New York City?

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.

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