This certificate program delivers employment-focused education and professional training to prepare students to work immediately as entry-level paralegals. Upon successful completion of the Paralegal certificate, graduates will be fully qualified to work as entry-level paralegals in the province of B.C., and to acquire membership in the B.C. Paralegal Association. Non-certificate students who successfully complete elective courses will broaden their knowledge and advance their career opportunities.
The eight courses plus experience provide the necessary foundation and fundamental skill set to begin work as a paralegal in B.C. Elective courses, a cross-disciplinary selection, focus on different areas of law including: family, commercial, criminal, property, insurance, and litigation.
The Paralegal certificate is delivered via in-class and online courses. Students can choose to do the entire program by either method or choose a combination of both methods. There will also be opportunities for students to engage in not-for-credit field trip activities, industry-related events, and ongoing work in the community.
The certificate ladders into the Paralegal diploma. All courses in the certificate transfer for credit into the diploma program.
B.C. secondary school graduation or equivalent. Non-graduates, aged 19 or older, may be considered on an individual basis.
Applicants must meet the Degree/diploma level English language proficiency requirement. For details on how this requirement may be met, see the English language proficiency requirement section of the calendar.
One of the following:
Successful completion at the post-secondary level, and within the past two years, of a Legal Administrative Assistant certificate program that includes a practicum; or
Current employment in a law firm, with a minimum of two years administrative assistance experience and proof of 60 wpm typing speed (attach copy of certificate).
When to apply
Applications are accepted on a continuous basis throughout the year.
Qualified applicants are considered for the next intake in which there is space.
See Continuous application
process for more information.
Additional documents required for a complete application:
Official transcripts (or interim transcripts) from all post-secondary institutions attended showing grade/course achievement as per entrance requirements. To be considered official, transcripts must be sent directly to UFV from the originating institution; see the Transfer Credit section for details.
Students who have not completed a legal administrative assistant program in the last two years will be asked to submit the following items in addition to their transcript:
A letter from their employer that confirms the required two years’ legal administrative assistance experience and current employment in a law firm.
An up-to-date résumé.
Proof of 60 wpm typing speed.
Applicants will be advised of an admission decision and, if accepted, will be provided with registration information. A deposit is required prior to registration (see the Fees and Other Costssection) and will be applied toward tuition fees.
Basis for admission decision
Applicants who meet the entrance requirements will be admitted in order of their application date. This date is set when an application, all required documentation, and the application fee have been submitted.
Fees and additional costs
Please see the Continuing Education webpage for current fee information. See the Fees and Other Costs section for additional information. All fees which total more than $100 in a calendar year are fully tax deductible. Books that are required for individual courses are available in the UFV bookstore.
The Paralegal certificate is one to three years in duration and is completed in a part-time capacity. Courses are delivered online and face-to-face (classes are scheduled during the evenings and weekends) and in hybrid schedules.
The program is located at the Clearbrook Centre in Abbotsford.
Core courses: 12 credits
Introduction to Law
Legal Research and Writing I
Elective courses: 12 credits
Criminal Law and Procedures I
Intellectual Property Law
Wills and Probate Administration
Corporate and Commercial Law
Students enrolled in undergraduate courses (courses numbered 100 or higher) must maintain an undergraduate Cumulative Grade Point Average (CGPA) of at least 2.00 to remain enrolled in Good Academic Standing at UFV.
Students in Good Academic Standing will have no registration limits placed on them. Failure to meet the minimum CGPA requirement will result in restrictions on registration and may eventually lead to academic suspension from undergraduate studies at UFV. Students on Academic Warning or Academic Probation are limited to registering in 10 credits. For further details, see the Academic standing and undergraduate continuance section of the academic calendar. Academic standing is governed by UFV’s Undergraduate Continuance policy (92).
Students whose GPA fall below 2.00 will be required to withdraw from the program.
Students must complete at least 75% of the credits required at UFV.
To be eligible to graduate, students must successfully complete all courses with a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.00 (B average).
Maximum length of time to complete program
Students must complete the four core courses and four electives within three years.