Paralegal Studies Course Descriptions

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Number sequencing next to course name means the following: first digit designates the number of lecture hours for the course; the second digit designates the number of lab, clinic or practicum hours; and the third digit designates the credit hours for the course.

Associate Degree only = #
Certificate only = *
Both Associate Degree and Certificate = **

* PL 101 Foundations of Paralegal Studies 2-0-2
The Foundations of Paralegal Studies course is comprised of two sections, the Introduction to the Legal Profession and a Pre-Employment Seminar. Introduction to the Legal Profession covers in detail the legal systems of the United States, in both the Federal courts and the New Hampshire state courts. Students will also be introduced to the Federal and the New Hampshire constitutions, to the legislative processes and to a "how to" approach to the law. Practical experience in drafting court documents, conducting initial client interviews and investigating cases will be gained. Ethical rules and regulations governing lawyers and paralegals will also be covered. The Pre-Employment Seminar includes writing a resume, drafting a cover letter, refining interview techniques, and conducting an independent job search. In addition, NHTI, Concord's Community College has career and placement counselors available for customized counseling sessions.

* PL 103 Causes of Action in Contract and Tort 2-0-2
For the purpose of this course, a "cause of action" is defined as a right the law gives and will enforce for one to recover something from another. It is the legal foundation from which the plaintiff derives the right of action against a defendant. The course is limited to the elements and defenses of various causes of action in contract and tort; it does not address remedies. (Prerequisites: PL 101 or permission of department head of Paralegal Studies)

* PL 104 Legal Research 3-0-3
The paralegal will be able to assist in most aspects of legal research in support of the drafting of clear and concise legal writings. Functional skills acquired in this course include a working knowledge of federal and state statutory research including legislative history; federal and state case law reporter systems; the hierarchy of the federal and state court systems; legal form books; law digests; case and statutory citators; legal treaties; legal periodicals; legal encyclopedia; and, both local and national standards of citation used in legal writing. An introduction to the use of LEXIS will also be included. (Prerequisites: PL 101 or permission of department head of Paralegal Studies) A $100 fee will be assessed for all students taking PL 104. This fee will cover costs associated with ABA dues, Lexus/Nexus, Franklin Pierce Law Center Library, Supreme Court Library and PLS Associate Membership.

PL 106 Introduction to Legal Studies 3-0-3
Introduction to Legal Studies covers in detail the legal systems of the United States, in both the Federal courts and the New Hampshire state courts. Students will be introduced to an overview of substantive and procedural law, legal research, interviewing and investigative skills. Ethical rules and regulations governing lawyers and paralegals will also be covered.

PL 107 Contracts and Torts 3-0-3
The contract portion of the class will cover Contract law from formation, defenses and remedies for breach. Likewise, various civil wrongs in which the victim is entitled to a remedy in the form of damages, including negligence, product liability, trespass and defamation, are addressed in the Torts section of the course. (Prerequisites: PL 106 or permission of department head of Paralegal Studies)

PL 110 Litigation and Trial Preparation 3-0-3
The student will be able to assist in virtually all phases of litigation. Functional skills acquired include preparing and maintaining the file; gathering information through client interviews; drafting pleadings; organizing and indexing documents; tracing evidence; examining public records; and preparing briefs and memoranda. (Prerequisite: PL 106 and PL 107 or permission of department head of Paralegal Studies)

PL 221 Real Estate 3-0-3
The student will be able to assist in virtually all phases of transactions in real property. Functional skills acquired include: conducting title searches; assisting in preparation and drafting of deeds, contracts of sale, leases and abstracts of title; gathering and reviewing documentation necessary in mortgage transactions; recording deeds and mortgages; and organizing and witnessing documents at the closing. (Prerequisites: PL 106, PL 107 or permission of department head of Paralegal Studies)

PL 225 Legal Research and Writing 3-2-4
The paralegal will be able to assist in most aspects of legal research in support of the drafting of clear and concise legal writings. Functional skills acquired in this course will include a working knowledge of federal and state statutory research including legislative history, federal and state case law reporter systems, the court systems, legal form books, law digest, case and statutory citators, legal treaties and legal periodicals. In addition, an introduction to the use of LEXIS will be included. Furthermore, the student will develop the specific writing skills necessary for the paralegal. Preparation of trial memorandum and appellate court briefs will also be covered. Emphasis will be on brevity, clarity, and precision of expression together with the refinement of editing skills. (Prerequisites: PL 106, PL 107 and PL 110 or permission of department head of Paralegal Studies) A $100 fee will be assessed for all students taking PL 225. This fee will cover costs associated with ABA dues, Lexis/Nexis, Franklin Pierce Law Center Library, Supreme Court Library and PLS Associate Membership.

PL 231 Business Organizations and Bankruptcy 3-0-3
The student will be able to assist in the formation, daily administration, reorganization and dissolution of a corporate entity. Functional skills acquired include: preparing articles of incorporation; satisfying state filing requirements; taking minutes at meetings of board of directors; preparing registration materials for regulatory agencies; and preparing bankruptcy petitions, claims and other documents. (Prerequisites: PL 106, PL 107 or permission of department head of Paralegal Studies)

* PL 241 Family Law 1-0-1
The student will examine the substantive and procedural law and the legal ethics relating to marriage, divorce, support and custody issues, and will be prepared to assist the attorney in drafting pleadings and completing preliminary research relative to these aspects of family law. (Prerequisites: All PL courses at 100 level or permission of department head of Paralegal Studies)

PL 242 Domestic Relations Law 3-0-3
The student will examine the substantive and procedural law and the legal ethics relating to marriage, divorce, and custody issues, and will be prepared to assist the attorney in drafting pleadings and completing preliminary research relative to these aspects of Domestic Relations Law. (Prerequisites: PL 106 and PL 107 or permission of department head of Paralegal Studies)

PL 251 Probate Estates and Trusts 3-0-3
The student will be able to assist in the planning and administration of the decedent's estate. Functional skills acquired include: assisting with estate planning; collecting assets; notifying beneficiaries; assisting in preparation of Federal and State Estate Tax Returns; submitting documentation to the Probate Court; transferring securities; drawing checks for the Executor's signature; and maintaining account records. (Prerequisites: PL 106 and PL 107 or PL 101 and PL 103, or permission of department head of Paralegal Studies.)

* PL 261 Criminal Process 1-0-1
The student will examine the various elements of New Hampshire criminal practice and procedure and will trace the steps by which the process is completed, from the initial interview through the post-trial procedure. (Prerequisites: All PL courses at 100 level or permission of department head of Paralegal Studies)

PL 262 Criminal Law and Procedures for the Paralegal 3-0-3
The student will examine the various elements of New Hampshire criminal practice and procedure and will trace the steps by which the process is completed, from the initial interview through the post-trial procedure. (Prerequisites: PL 106, PL 107, and PL 110 or permission of department head of Paralegal Studies)

PL 270 Internship 0-9-3
The internship offers the opportunity to combine the theoretical and practical issues of the classroom in the workplace setting. Students are required to complete a specified number of hours in a law office or law-related environment. Weekly meetings will be held with the internship coordinator to discuss the ongoing experience. (Prerequisite: All 100 level PL courses or permission of department head of Paralegal Studies)

* PL 271 Legal Writing 1-0-1
This course focuses on the specific writing skills necessary for the paralegal. The assignments involve practical examples of paralegals' work products, as demonstrated in the areas covered in the Certificate curriculum. Preparation of a trial court memorandum and an appellate court brief will also be covered. Emphasis will be put on brevity, clarity, and precision of expression together with a refinement of editing skills. (Prerequisites: All other 100 level PL courses or permission of department head of Paralegal Studies; corequisite: PL 110)

Admissions
31 College Drive
Concord, NH 03301
(603) 230-4011
nhtiadm@ccsnh.edu