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Virtual Paralegals & Unauthorized Practice of Law (UPL)

03 Jun 2020 6:39 PM | Cordina Charvis (Administrator)

The unauthorized practice of law is engaging in the practice of law by persons or entity not authorized to practice law pursuant to state law or using the designations “lawyer,” “attorney at law,” counselor at law,” “law,” “law office,” “J.D.,” “Esq.,” or other equivalent words by any person or entity not authorized to practice, the use of which is reasonably likely to induce others to believe that the person or entity is authorized to engage in the practice of law.

Per the National Federation of Paralegal Associations, Inc. (NFPA®)

  • Every virtual paralegal should avoid UPL by working exclusively under the supervision of attorneys. 
  • The legal restriction for operating a virtual paralegal business is, virtual paralegal should NEVER give legal advice. Typically, paralegals are not permitted by law to give legal advice. In most states, it is a violation of the law for anyone other than a licensed attorney to give legal advice. Always represent yourself as the paralegal and never an attorney.
  • A paralegal's title shall clearly indicate the individual's status and shall be disclosed in all business and professional communications to avoid misunderstandings and misconceptions about the paralegal's role and responsibilities.
  • A paralegal's title shall be included if the paralegal's name appears on business cards, letterheads, brochures, directories, and advertisements.

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