Sep 142012

The AIPS paralegal certificate covers many topics and one of the most interesting courses is Criminal law. Criminal law is a course that is deeply rooted in the United States Constitution. The United States Constitution guarantees us the same rights and liberties and is there to protect us.

We are learning in the paralegal certificate program that a criminal client, like any other client, has a right to confidentiality and attorney client privilege, as well as a right to zealous representation. Every defendant has constitutional rights such as the right against unlawful search and seizure, due process, a speedy trial, and a trial by jury.  These are fundamental rights embedded in the United States and state constitutions. The bottom line is that a client has rights and it doesn’t matter if they are not guilty or guilty. The attorney must still represent them zealously. If the client wants a trial, then the attorney must fight. If the client wants a plea negotiation, then the attorney must try to successfully negotiate on behalf of the client. The important thing is that it is the client’s choice along with the attorney’s best advice.

The Ethics course in the AIPS paralegal certificate program explains that every attorney takes an oath when they are sworn in and part of the oath includes the promise to abide by certain rules of ethics. One ethical rule is that the attorney must represent his client zealously. Another ethical rule is the rule of attorney/client confidentiality. If attorneys fail to abide by these ethics, then they can be reprimanded, suspended or even barred from practicing law. Not to mention a malpractice suit against the attorney!!

Criminal law and Ethics go hand in hand. Criminal law is a fascinating area of law and there is much to learn, while Ethics is equally important and shapes how and what we do in the legal field.  Both areas of law are covered thoroughly in the paralegal certificate program at AIPS.

To find out more information on the Criminal law and Ethics courses in the AIPS paralegal certificate program curriculum visit or the curriculum page of the AIPS website.

Paralegal School Instructor Janet Russeth



  •  September 14, 2012
  •  Posted by at 11:23 pm
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