Legal Office Professional

The legal secretary assists attorneys with a wide variety of responsibilities including performing clerical duties; maintaining office files; working closely with attorneys to meet deadlines for court calendars; preparing summonses, complaints, motions, and subpoenas; and filing documents with the courts.

In some law offices, legal secretaries review legal reference books, other legal publications/or electronic media to identify court decisions pertinent to pending cases.

Program and Course Information

The legal secretary assists attorneys with a wide variety of responsibilities including performing clerical duties; maintaining office files; working closely with attorneys to meet deadlines for court calendars; preparing summonses, complaints, motions, and subpoenas; and filing documents with the courts. In some law offices, legal secretaries review legal reference books, other legal publications/or electronic media to identify court decisions pertinent to pending cases.

Southwestern College offers two excellent programs: Legal Office Professional and Legal Office Professional — Bilingual (English/Spanish).

These programs provide students with strong legal secretarial skills and focus on developing excellent human relations skills with an awareness of the growing multicultural community in San Diego County. An added feature is that students have an option of working toward a certificate or degree emphasizing one of the following specialties: family law; civil litigation; criminal law; business law; international law; immigration law; or will, trust, and probate.

Students with a specialty and/or knowledge of a frequently used foreign language will have the greatest opportunities for employment.

Certificate of Achievement and Associate in Science Degree: Legal Office Professional

The Associate in Science Degree in Legal Studies is designed to prepare students to work in a legal office. Students will gain an understanding of the court system, legal terminology, and the preparation of legal documents in some of the various areas of law including family law, wills and probate, and criminal law. Word processing skills and English language skills are also emphasized.

  • BUS 78 Electronic Calculator 1 unit
  • BUS 182 Keyboarding for Office Professionals 2 units
  • BUS 200A Microsoft Word: Beginning Certification Preparation 2.5 units
  • BUS 210 Business English 3 units or  BUS 211 Communication in Business and Industry 3 units or BUS 212 Business Communication 3 units
  • BUS 223 Legal Office Procedures 2.5 units
  • BUS 249 Legal Transcription 2.5 units
  • CIS 122B Spreadsheet Software —Excel 1 unit
  • LEGL 224 Procedures for Legal Office Personnel 3 units
  • LEGL 270 Computer Skills for Legal Professionals 2.5 units

Total units: 20
Recommended Electives:

  • ACCT 7;
  • BUS 73, 74, 140, 177, 183, 206, 226, 228, 229, 240, 200B, 246
  • LEGL 255, 256, 257, 259, 260, 261, 262, 263, 264, 265, 266, 267, 268, 269
  • CIS 129, 133, 134, 139, 140, 151, 152

    BUS 241 and 242 satisfies BUS 200A and 200B in the Legal Office Professional program.

NOTE: Certificate of Achievement or A.S. degree stating a legal specialty will be granted upon the completion of all requirements above plus completion of one of the following specialties: