Paralegal Certification Process

Paralegals who wish to apply for certification do so by following the process outlined below. Application deadlines and applicable fees may be found in the TBLS Fees & Application Schedule. To avoid common mistakes, refer to the Helpful Tips and FAQ before beginning the application process.

Certification Task List:

Step I: Application

  1. The certification process is governed respectively by the Texas Plan for Recognition and Regulation of Paralegals Certification.
  2. Determine your CLE standing with respect to a specific specialty area by contacting the TBLS. There is a minimum, 30-hour requirement, and only TBLS approved courses count toward specialty area certification.
  3. Use the TBLS Paralegal Approved Course Search page to find qualifying courses, or contact the TBLS for additional course information.
  4. Read the Standards for Paralegal Certification as well as Rules and Regulations for the specialty area.
  5. Download the appropriate Paralegal Certification Application.
  6. Complete the application, submit references and pay the appropriate Paralegal Certification Application fee. The application and filing fee deadline is May 12, 2014. References must be received by May 31, 2014.
  7. Upon the receipt of your completed application, TBLS performs an initial administrative check and resolves any deficiencies. Please respond promptly to requests for additional information or clarification.
  8. The appropriate TBLS Paralegal specialty area Advisory Commission reviews and votes on each individual's certification application. Approved applicants are allowed to take specialty area examinations.

Step II: Examination

  1. Approved applicants receive examination registration information by mail, pay the appropriate examination fee, and then take a day-long examination. Exams are administered only once each year. Paralegal Exam Specifications for each specialty area covering knowledge, skills and subject matter are available online for use in preparing for exams.
  2. Examinations are scored with results sent to applicant by mail.
  3. Upon meeting all qualifications and passing the examination, a paralegal is considered Board Certified and is conferred a Certificate of Special Competence in a specialty area of law.

Should you experience any difficulties, please contact the TBLS or call us at 1-855-277-TBLS(8257), or 512-453-7266 in Austin. One of our Certification Analysts will be more than happy to answer any questions you may have regarding the certification process.