Paralegal Studies - Legal Nurse Certificate    Click here to request more info


Program Contacts

Program Director Ruth Harrison (928) 776-2163
Dean Jill Fitzgerald (928) 776-2277

Quick Facts


About the Paralegal Studies - Legal Nurse Certificate

 

Legal nurses work as part of the legal team in a law office, insurance or healthcare firm and deal with the medical aspects of litigation. Legal nurses may interview clients and witnesses, do medical/legal research, assist in various aspects of discovery, draft pleadings and assist attorneys at trial.

Legal nurses work as part of the legal team in a law office, insurance or healthcare firm and deal with the medical aspects of litigation. Legal nurses may interview clients and witnesses, do medical/legal research, assist in various aspects of discover, draft pleadings and assist attorneys at trial.

Note:  

Candidates for the Legal Nurse certificate program must have already earned a Registered Nurse degree (RN), and have attained a minimum of an associate degree. In addition, candidates for the program must submit a letter from a medical institution offering evidence that 2,000 hours of experience have been completed.

The Legal Nurse certificate program is an intensive program of study. Extensive writing, research and critical thinking are required in all the law courses in this certificate program. All courses in this program must be completed with a grade of “C” or better.

Program Outcomes

Upon successful completion of the Paralegal Studies - Legal Nurse Certificate program, the learner will be able to:

 

  1. Interview witnesses and interact with clients, conduct medical/legal research, assist in various aspects of discovery, draft legal pleadings and assist attorneys at trial.
  2. Identify legal/medical ethical issues and apply the values of professional responsibility.
  3. Apply written, oral and interpersonal skills in the legal medical and business settings.
  4. Identify and evaluate technology needs and apply and adapt technology as necessary.
  5. Use word processing software proficiently and adapt to different types of computer applications.
 

Program-Specific Requirements

Course Course Title Hours
LAW100 Intro to Paralegal Studies

COURSE DESCRIPTION:
LAW 100. Introduction to Paralegal Studies (3). Introduction to the role of the paralegal in the legal system, including the federal and state court systems, ethics, regulation and professional responsibility, legal analysis, research and basic legal concepts. Includes professional development and job search strategies. Three lecture.

COURSE CONTENT:
1. Introduction to the paralegal profession
a. History
b. Education
c. Skills
2. Careers in the legal community
3. The regulation of legal professionals
4. Ethics and professional responsibility
5. Introduction to law
a. Sources
b. Court system and alternative dispute resolution
c. Fundamental legal concepts
6. Civil and criminal litigation and procedures
7. Legal analysis and writing
8. Legal research

LEARNING OUTCOMES:
1. Describe the American judicial system and the responsibilities of the various court systems.
2. Distinguish between civil and criminal litigation, and describe the stages of litigation.
3. Describe and explain basic concepts of law.
4. Apply legal analysis to the briefing of cases and problem solving.
5. Define the issues of the paralegal profession, and discuss professional development and job search strategies.
6. Apply principles of ethics and professional responsibility to specific scenarios.

3
LAW105 Legal Computer Apps

COURSE DESCRIPTION:
LAW 105. Legal Computer Applications (2). Introduction to computer software and software applications used in a law office and the business community. Includes computer research tools, e-mail, application of general office management software to the legal environment, ethical considerations, and law office practice concepts. Prerequisite: LAW 100 (may be taken concurrently) and CSA 140. Two lecture.

COURSE CONTENT:
1. Computer hardware and software; concepts of law office management
2. Software programs for law office management including computer research, e-mail, and application of general office management software to the legal environment
3. WESTLAW and Internet research
4. Complex legal documents
5. The law office and law practice of the 21st century
6. Ethical considerations and basic law office practice concepts
7. Electronic presentation software

LEARNING OUTCOMES:
1. Explain the use of technology in the practice of law and in the management of the law office. (1-5,7)
2. Identify a variety of computer tools available to assist the legal professional in the performance of daily tasks. (1-3,5,7)
3. Identify research strategies in the use of WESTLAW and Internet research. (3)
4. Describe the application of general office management software packages to the legal environment (ex: word processing, database management, spreadsheets, and presentation software) and prepare complex legal documents. (2,4,7)
5. Use legal software applications packages:
a. Standard Internet browser to conduct Internet research. (2,3)
b. WESTLAW (legal research). (2,3).
c. General office management software (ex: word processing, database management, spreadsheets, presentation software. (1,2,4,5,7)
d. Other legal-specific software as appropriate and available. (2,3,4,5)
6. Find, evaluate and summarize new and emerging software and hardware technologies for the law office. (2,3,5)
7. Identify and explain ethical concerns relating to technology and the practice of law. (6)
8. Design an electronic slideshow using presentation software. (7)

2
LAW207 Intro Legal Nurse Prac/Eth

COURSE DESCRIPTION:
LAW 207. Introduction to Legal Nurse Practice and Ethics (3). A survey of legal nurse practice and a study of the most important ethical issues facing the medical and legal professions as defined by organizations such as the American Bar Association, the American Medical Association, the American Nurses Association and the American Association of Legal Nurse Consultants. Application of ethical principles to case studies. Analysis of issues including informed consent, euthanasia, assisted suicide, and standards of care. An overview of the legal nurse profession, issues, marketing strategies, and the role of the legal nurse in the litigation process. Three lecture.

COURSE CONTENT:
1. Introduction to legal nurse practice
2. Principles of legal and medical ethics
3. Litigation involving medical issues and/or medical malpractice
4. Paralegal's professional responsibilities (ABA, NALA, NFPA)
5. Issues of the legal nurse profession, including marketing
6. Application of ethical knowledge to case studies
7. Resolutions to ethical dilemmas

LEARNING OUTCOMES:
1. Identify the basic concepts and principles related to the study of ethics and legal nurse practice.
2. Synthesize specific ethical problems of the legal nurse profession.
3. Resolve ethical dilemmas using current codes and cases.
4. Describe and differentiate between the ethical codes written by the American Bar Association, the American Medical Association, the American Nurses Association, the American Association of Legal Consultants, the National Association of Legal Assistants, and the National Federation of Paralegal Associations.
5. Work through all aspects of a litigation involving medical issues and/or medical malpractice.
6. Analyze case studies involving ethical dilemmas.
7. Analyze issues of legal nurse profession, including marketing strategies.

3
LAW215 Legal Research and Writing I

COURSE DESCRIPTION:
LAW 215. Legal Research & Writing I (4) (Fall). Principles and techniques for conducting legal research. Emphasis on sources of law, utilization of primary and secondary sources, and case briefing. Extensive practice in writing research memoranda. Prerequisite: LAW 100 and either ENG 101 or ENG 103. Four lecture.

COURSE CONTENT:
1. Grammar and sentence structure
2. Role of the paralegal in conducting legal research
3. Techniques of legal research
4. Statutes, digests, reporters, legal periodicals, and other sources
5. Facts and issues in legal analysis

LEARNING OUTCOMES:
1. Identify parts of a sentence and use correct grammar in legal writing. (1,8)
2. Describe the role of the paralegal in conducting legal research and in legal writing. (2)
3. Research the law using appropriate legal resources and techniques. (3,4)
4. Locate federal, state and local statutes, ordinances, acts, and cases. (3,4)
5. Summarize, outline and explain the relevant facts and legal issues involved in a legal problem. (5)
6. Cite cases using Blue Book and/or ALWD citation form. (6)
7. Apply legal analysis in the writing process. (7,8)
8. Write legal memoranda. (8)
9. Identify and explain ethical concerns relating to legal research and writing. (9)

4
LAW216 Legal Research and Writing II

COURSE DESCRIPTION:
LAW 216. Legal Research and Writing II (4) (Spring). Application of research and writing skills in responding to complex legal issues and preparing complex legal documents. Prerequisite: LAW 215 and either ENG 101 or ENG 103. Four lecture.

COURSE CONTENT:
1. Legal research
2. Federal, state and local statutes, ordinances, acts, court rules and case law
3. Blue Book and/or ALWD citation form
4. Research analysis and writing strategy
5. Complex legal documents
6. Computer-assisted legal research
7. Ethical concerns relating to legal research and writing

LEARNING OUTCOMES:
1. Locate and apply federal, state and local statutes, ordinances and acts, court rules, and case law in the preparation of complex legal documents. (1,2,4,5,6)
2. Summarize and explain relevant facts and legal issues involved in complex legal problems. (4,5)
3. Cite relevant authority using Blue Book and/or ALWD citation form. (3)
4. Apply research analysis and develop strategies in the legal writing process. (1,2,4,5,6)
5. Draft complex legal documents. (1,2,3,4,5,6)
6. Use computer-assisted legal research. (6)
7. Identify and explain ethical concerns relating to legal research and writing. (7)

4
LAW220 Civil Tort Litigation I

COURSE DESCRIPTION:
LAW 220. Civil Tort Litigation I (3) (Fall). Principles and procedures of civil litigation. Jurisdiction and venue, parties to action, and pleadings. Introduction to drafting of documents required from inception of civil action through the pleading stage, up to trial. Prerequisite: LAW 100 and either ENG 101 or ENG 103 and either CSA 130 or CSA 140. Two lecture. Two lab.

COURSE CONTENT:
1. Courts and court systems
2. Jurisdiction and venue
3. Parties to the actions
4. Client and witness interviewing
5. File organization and document control
6. Demand letters and settlement
7. Preparation of pleadings
a. Complaint
b. Summons
c. Certificate of Compulsory Arbitration
d. Answer
e. Disclosure statement
8. Elements of basic negligence actions
a. Duty and breach of duty
b. Causation
c. Damages
d. Defenses
e. Comparative negligence
f. Immunities
9. Terminology

LEARNING OUTCOMES:
1. Outline the litigation process from client interview through the pleading stage.
2. Interview clients and witnesses.
3. Draft basic litigation documents.
4. Describe the role of the paralegal in the litigation process.
5. Define legal terminology related to personal injury litigation.
6. Describe the key components of Arizona law related to personal injury litigation.

3
LAW221 Civil Tort Litigation II

COURSE DESCRIPTION:
LAW 221. Civil Tort Litigation II (3) (Spring). Study of the civil litigation process. Includes trial preparation, trial, evidence, and appeal. Prerequisite: LAW 220 and either ENG 101 or ENG 103. Two lecture. Two lab.

COURSE CONTENT:
1. Preparation of discovery and pretrial documents:
a. Interrogatories
b. Requests for production
c. Requests for Admission
d.. Subpoenas
2. Depositions
3. Summary judgments
4. Arbitration
5. Pretrial motions
6. Preparation of witnesses
7. Trial Procedures
a. Jury selection
b. Courtroom observations
c. Trial notebooks
d. Note taking
e. Daily trial recapitulation
f. Demonstrative exhibits
g. Witnesses
8. Post trial and appellate procedures
9. Torts
a. Abuse of process
b. Product liability
c. Slander/libel
d. Employment torts
e. Malpractice
f. Fraud/misrepresentation
g. Emotional distress
10. Terminology

LEARNING OUTCOMES:
1. Outline the litigation process from pleading state through post trial.
2. Prepare a trial notebook.
3. Apply the Arizona Rules of Civil Procedure.
4. Assist in the process of witness preparation.
5. Draft discovery and trial pleadings.
6. Describe the role of the paralegal in the litigation process.
7. Identify elements of different tort causes for action.

3

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