Community colleges to offer Limited License Legal Technician training
OLYMPIA, Wash. – Four Washington community colleges will begin offering training to students going into the new field of Limited License Legal Technician (LLLT). License training will begin as early as spring 2014.
The LLLT license allows holders to provide limited family law legal advice directly to clients. The state Supreme Court endorsed the license in 2012, making Washington the first and currently only state that authorizes this profession.
Highline Community College, Edmonds Community College, Tacoma Community College and Spokane Community College set up LLLT certification requirements following the state Supreme Court decision. Clark College and Whatcom Community College are in the process of coordinating classes to meet the LLLT license conditions. Colleges and universities offering the training have made nearly every required course available to students online.
Through its ruling, the Washington state Supreme Court intends to make simple, routine legal services in family law more available and affordable to clients. LLLT licenses also provide an opportunity for people in the legal profession to advance their careers by assisting clients independent of an attorney’s supervision.
LLLTs may select and complete forms, inform clients of procedures and timelines, review and explain pleadings and identify additional documents that may be needed for a client’s case. The Limited License Legal Technician Board, which oversees the license program, may also add landlord tenant law, elder law and immigration law to future LLLT practice areas.
In order to earn the license, students must have an associate degree or higher credential, 60 credit-hours of American Bar Association-approved paralegal and family law coursework, 3,000 hours of substantive law-related experience supervised by a licensed attorney and pass a two-part LLLT license exam. Until Dec. 31, 2016, certified or registered paralegals with at least 10 years of experience may apply for a waiver that allows them to take only the practice area credits and pass the exam.