Become a Paralegal in South Carolina

Find Paralegal Programs

If you answer a few quick questions, we'll show you paralegal programs that are actively recruiting students with your educational background and location.

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The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported in 2012 that there were 4,220 paralegals and legal assistants employed in South Carolina. The hourly mean wage was $20.07 and the annual mean wage was $41,750. As with most professions, those with more experience and education are usually the ones who are hired for the more desirable, higher-paying positions, and paralegals in the 90th percentile for annual wages made as much as $60,780. In addition, the BLS projected that paralegal and legal assistant positions nationwide would increase by 18 percent between 2010 and 2020.

*Whether you’re looking to earn an undergraduate degree in preparation for the Certified Paralegal Exam, or ready to advance your career with a master's degree in legal studies, accredited online programs make it easier than ever to get the education you need:

Washington University School of Law offers an online Master of Legal Studies (MLS) program. This 12-month master's degree allows paralegals to gain in-depth knowledge of US Law. The program can be completed without relocating or leaving your job. No GRE or LSAT scores required.


The demand for paralegals extends beyond law firms to insurance companies, corporations and more. Paralegal education can give you an edge in pursuing open positions.

South Carolina Paralegal Certification

Certification or licensing is not required for paralegals in the state of South Carolina.

Where to Earn Your Paralegal Certificate or Degree in South Carolina

Paralegal Certificates

  • Horry Georgetown Technical College (HGTC)

    Located in Conway, South Carolina, Horry Georgetown Technical College (HGTC) offers a paralegal specialist certificate designed to prepare students to work under the supervision of attorneys. Students learn and practice documentary and legal research, gain the ability to recommend solutions for procedural problems and come to understand office procedure in the legal environment. Upon completion of this 40-semester credit hour program, graduates have found work in law firms, government offices and the private sector.

    • Estimated Program Cost: $5,560 for Horry or Georgetown County residents; $7,080 for South Carolina residents outside of Horry and Georgetown Counties; $10,080 for out-of-state students (based on 2013-2014 per-credit tuition)
    • Prerequisites: High school diploma, GED or age 18 or above; ACT, SAT or COMPASS scores
    • ABA Approved: Yes
    • Format: On campus

    Sample Required Courses:

    • Torts
    • Business Law I
    • Legal Writing
    • Introduction to Law & Ethics
    • Legal Bibliography
  • Midlands Technical College (MTC)

    Midlands Technical College (MTC) is a public, two-year institution based in Columbia, South Carolina that offers a post-baccalaureate paralegal certificate. This program is for students who already have a bachelor’s degree and are looking to change careers or seeking more education in their field to add to their knowledge or advance in the workplace.

    • Estimated Program Cost: $3,624 for county residents; $4,536 (for out-of-county state residents; $10,872 for out-of-state students (based on spring 2014 per-credit tuition)
    • Prerequisites: Bachelor’s degree
    • ABA Approved: Yes
    • Format: On campus with a few courses offered online

    Sample required courses:

    • Torts
    • Business Law I
    • Civil Litigation
    • Wills, Trust & Probate
    • Property Law

Paralegal Associate Degrees

  • Central Carolina Technical College (CCTC)

    Serving Clarendon, Lee, Kershaw and Sumter counties, Central Carolina Technical College (CCTC) is a public, two-year institution. Its paralegal Associate in Applied Science includes general education courses that give students necessary oral and written communication skills, while the core legal program provides students with an understanding of the court system and the processes of civil and criminal litigation. Students also learn to prepare legal research and documents in at least three areas of law.

    • Estimated Program Cost: $10,695 for residents of Clarendon, Lee, Kershaw and Sumter County; $12,420 for state residents of other counties; $18,492 for out-of-state students (based on fall 2013 per-credit tuition)
    • Prerequisites: High school diploma or GED; age 18 or above
    • ABA Approved: Yes
    • Format: On campus

    Sample required courses:

    • Introduction to Computers
    • Introduction to Law and Ethics
    • Torts
    • Office Accounting
    • Legal Writing
    • Civil Litigation I
  • Greenville Technical College (GTC)

    Greenville Technical College (GTC) offers a 64-credit paralegal Associate in Applied Science. Students are trained in factual research and conducting interviews as well as reviewing, analyzing and drafting legal documents, enabling them to work in entry-level positions. The program is taught primarily by licensed attorneys and both day and night courses are available.

    • Estimated Program Cost: $13,824 for in-county residents; $14,720 for out-of-county state residents; $24,960 for out-of-state students (based on fall 2013 per-credit tuition and fees)
    • Prerequisites: High school diploma or GED
    • ABA Approved: Yes
    • Format: On campus

    Sample required courses:

    • Legal Writing
    • Legal Bibliography
    • Claims Investigation
    • Property Law
  • Trident Technical College

    Located in Charleston, South Carolina, Trident Technical College (TTC) offers a paralegal Associate in Applied Science. The program is designed to prepare students to draft legal documents, conduct research and apply ethical principles. Students receive a well-rounded general education, along with a core legal education to prepare them for working under the direction of attorneys.

    • Estimated Program Cost: $10,902 for residents of Charleston, Berkeley and Dorchester Counties; $12,100 out-of-county state residents; $20,643 for out-of-state students (based on 2013-2014 per credit tuition)
    • Prerequisites: High school diploma or GED; English and math proficiency
    • ABA Approved: Yes
    • Format: On-campus

    Sample required courses:

    • Legal Writing
    • Criminal Law I
    • Introduction to Law & Ethics
    • Claims Investigation

Paralegal Bachelor’s Degree

  • South University – Columbia

    South University‘s Bachelor of Science in legal studies combines general education with a core foundation of legal courses that prepare students for entry-level positions in the legal field, government or private sector corporations and businesses. Students are taught both legal theory and practical applications including interviewing skills, document preparation and legal research. In addition to the program offered at South University’s Columbia, South Carolina campus, students can earn this degree through a partially online course of study.

    • Estimated Program Cost: $80,925 (based on 2013 full-program tuition)
    • Prerequisites: High school diploma or GED; minimum combined SAT I score of 900, combined ACT score of 19 or a satisfactory score on the university-administered admissions examination
    • ABA Approved: Yes (on-campus program only
    • Format: On campus or hybrid (on campus and online)

    Sample Required Courses:

    • Introduction to Paralegalism
    • Legal Research & Writing I & II
    • Employment Law
    • Torts and Remedies

Additional Paralegal Educational Programs

Professional Organizations

  • The Charleston Association of Legal Assistants (CALA) has been promoting professionalism in the paralegal profession since 1982. Membership meetings are held every month and provide excellent opportunities for networking and learning. Additional membership benefits include a job bank and opportunities for continuing legal education (CLE) and community service.
  • The South Carolina Upstate Paralegal Association (SCUPA) works to establish fellowship among SCUPA members, the National Association of Legal Assistants (NALA) and members of the legal community. It holds educational luncheon meetings, maintains cooperation with bar associations and supports continuing legal education. Members can keep up with association and legal news through the association’s publication “The SCUPA Scoop.”
  • The Palmetto Paralegal Association (PPA) offers opportunities for continuing legal education; for example, luncheons are a way of networking, staying current with developments in the law and obtaining CLE credit. The PPA also holds an all-day educational seminar each year. Its newsletter, “In Brief,” contains information on local, state and national legal issues. Members also receive job listings via email and can keep up with salary trends thanks to access to PPA’s statewide survey of paralegal compensation.
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