Paralegal Career Guide for Arkansas

Paralegal Education in Arkansas

Flag of Arkansas

Flag of Arkansas (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

An ever growing field and projected to increase 28 per cent by the year 2018, paralegals are currently in demand across the country. In Arkansas, especially in Little Rock and the surrounding areas, over 2,000 paralegals are employed by government agencies, law firms and corporations. They are sought for their expertise in areas such as document interpretation, appointment setting, interviewing or witnesses, research, assisting an attorney for trial preparation, and many other tasks.

What was once the domain of the lawyer has now become the kingdom of the paralegal as the profession rises into a new light with employers who enjoy that paralegals, while well-paid, are not as expensive to keep on a payroll as an attorney. Paralegal associations have been working hard to showcase paralegals for the valuable resource they are, and they have achieved their goal. Now more than ever it is a good career to choose.


In USD as of Feb 6, 2013 (source: 25k 50k 75k
Paralegal in Arkansas $46,000

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Paralegal Requirements


arkansas (Photo credit: L. Allen Brewer)

There is no set authority governing the paralegal field in Arkansas; consequently there are no set degrees or certifications that are essential for a job as a paralegal. However, there are three ways to become one: learn as you go, take a specific educational course for an Associate’s degree, or if you already have a college degree, there is a certification course which focuses solely on paralegal responsibilities and training and takes less time to achieve than an AA degree. (Primarily because all the required courses have been satisfied.)

Arkansas has a Rule of Professional Conduct 5.3 within its laws that keeps in line with many other states. It enforces that the behavior of a paralegal or other legal assistant becomes the culpability of the attorney who has them in direct employ. In short, the lawyer employing a paralegal takes responsibility for his or her professional actions.

While there are no specific requirements to becoming a paralegal in Arkansas, an aspiring paralegal can certainly set herself up to outshine the competition by completing a degree or becoming certified. There are four additional certificates that can be completed for an employer to really take notice of a paralegal’s skill and experience. It is important to ask a potential employer if they want a certified paralegal or a certificated paralegal, as the two are not the same and an employer may not know the difference. A certificated paralegal already possessed a Bachelor’s degree in a non-related field and had only to take the certification courses for paralegal studies, or gained a certificate through other course work and study; a certified paralegal is one who has taken and passed one of the four extra exams. It’s important to note than not all schools offering a certificate are accredited or American Bar Association-approved.

Educational Institutions

In Arkansas there are only two ABA-approved schools, though there are considerably more that have the accreditation of the Board of Education and even more that are non-accredited.

NorthWest Arkansas Community College offers a two-year Associate’s degree of Applied Science in paralegal studies. This college enjoys an agreement with the UA Law school concerning paralegal research and graduating students can find local jobs with companies such as Wal-Mart, J.B. hunt Trucking and Tyson’s. Courses are offered throughout the day, evening and off-campus. It’s located in Bentonville and internships are on an elective basis.

The second is the University of Arkansas in Fort Smith. It offers a two-year Associate of Applied Science degree and programs for both paralegals and legal assistants. ABA guidelines are stringent and demanding; the University of Arkansas-Fort Smith was the first in the state to gain the ABA approval and has kept it since 1994. Internships are on an elective basis but are arranged with the U. S. Attorney’s office, Prosecutor’s Office, and local law firms. It also provides day and evening classes.

Firms of Interest

There are a large number of firms that hire paralegals in Arkansas and most of them are in Little Rock. Below you will find a truncated list and contact information.

Rose Law Firm
120 East Fourth Street
Little Rock, AR 72201-2893
Tel: (501) 375-9131
Fax: (501) 375-1309

Friday Eldredge & Clark LLP has three offices in Arkansas

400 West Capitol Avenue, Suite 2000
Little Rock, Arkansas, 72201-3522
Tel: (501) 376-2011

3425 North Futrall Drive, Suite 103
Fayetteville, Arkansas, 72703-6252
Tel: (479) 695-2011

600 S. 52nd St., Suite 200
Rogers, Arkansas, 72758
Tel: (479) 695-2011

Quattlebaum Grooms Tull & Burrow PLLC
111 Center Street, Suite 1900
Little Rock, AR 72201
Tel: (501) 379-1700
Fax: (501) 379-170

Gill Elrod Ragon Owen & Sherman PA
425 West Capitol Avenue
Suite 3801
Little Rock, Arkansas 72201
Tel: (501) 376.3800

Links to Paralegal Support in the State

Paralegal Schools in Arkansas

Campus: Online

Keiser University is a private, not-for-profit university.


  • Bachelor of Arts in Criminal Justice
  • Associate of Arts in Homeland Security

Campus: Online

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Take classes with the help of your smartphone, tablet or laptop. CTU’s online bachelor’s programs were ranked among the Best Online Bachelor’s Programs by U.S. News & World Report.

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  • Doctor of Management - Criminal Justice
  • Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice
  • Master of Science in Criminal Justice
  • Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice – Human Services
  • Master of Science in Criminal Justice - Homeland Security

Campus: Online

100% Online & No Standardized Testing

We are committed to helping you achieve your goals and complete your degree as quickly as possible.


  • Bachelor of Science: Criminal Justice: Homeland Security
  • Bachelor of Science: Criminal Justice: Juvenile Justice
  • Bachelor of Science: Criminal Justice: Public Administration
  • Master of Science: Criminal Justice
  • Master of Science: Criminal Justice: Public Administration

Campus: Online

Building on Purdue's mission to provide greater access to affordable, world-class education, Purdue University Global delivers a fully personalized online experience that's tailored to working adults. By opening the doors to adults who need flexibility to fit learning into their busy lives, we make it possible to achieve a high-quality education from a prestigious university system—completely online.


  • BS in Criminal Justice - Law Enforcement
  • Associate of Applied Science in Criminal Justice and Criminology
  • AAS in Criminal Justice
  • BS in Criminal Justice - Crime Scene Investigation
  • BS in Criminal Justice

Campus: Online

At South College we welcome students from all different stages of life and career.  Whether you are pursing a degree for the first time, going back to school as an adult learner, or furthering your career with an advanced degree, our faculty and staff will partner with you to give your dreams direction.


  • BS Criminal Justice
  • AS Criminal Justice

Campus: Online

Trident University International provides an exceptional online educational experience for its students – diverse adult learners including current and former members of the military family. Adhering to the highest standards of academic excellence, faculty and staff foster a learning community where students develop critical thinking and problem solving skills to enhance their lives and advance their careers.


  • Bachelor of Science in Homeland Security

Campus: Online

Since 1977, Keiser University has maintained a practical, hands-on approach to career-focused education to help our students achieve their personal and professional goals.  Our student-centered approach remains at the foundation of the Keiser University mission and continues to attract students who prefer a more personal learning experience.


  • Master of Arts in Homeland Security

Paralegal Jobs in Arkansas