NALP is a non-profit Membership Body as well as being the only Paralegal body that is recognised as an awarding organisation by Ofqual (the regulator of qualifications in England & Wales). Through its training arm, NALP Training, accredited recognised professional paralegal qualifications are offered for a career as a paralegal professional. NALP is also a Recognised Body of the Professional Paralegal Register (PPR) the voluntary regulator for the unregulated legal sector.
NALP Mission Statement
NALP strives to ensure that its members are recognised as a key part of the legal profession by the quality of its qualifications and professional development. NALP encourages, promotes and develops the role and practice of the paralegal and represents the best interests of its members.
NALP's objectives are:
- to provide for the qualification of its Affiliate Members as Paralegals
- to provide for the career development of its qualified Members
- to promote the Professional Paralegal Register as the voluntary regulator for unregulated legal sector
- to disseminate information on matters of professional interest
- to represent, promote and express the collective interests of its Members
- to act as a consultative body on all things concerned with the Paralegal Profession
- to provide a forum for all matters affecting the interests of its Members
- to provide opportunities for social contacts amongst Paralegals
What NALP does
NALP's aim is to strengthen the voice of NALP Paralegals in the legal world. NALP has advocated in the past on behalf of its members, to the The Law Society, and Bar Council.
The PPR (The Professional Paralegal Register), is now the voice of the Paralegal Profession and is the voluntary regulator for Paralegal Practitioners who do not work under the umbrella of the regulated sector.
NALP encourages all its members who wish to become Professional Paralegal Practitioners, to gain a PPR Paralegal Practising Certificate subject to eligibility, insurance requirements and competency. The PPR
The importance of professional training and qualification
The role of the paralegal is crucial to the practical and economic sustainability of the provision of legal services by solicitors' practices and alternative business structures (ABS), as well as roles played within commerce and industry. They are an extremely important part of the legal profession.
Now, more than ever before, Paralegals will take on an even more significant role due to changes occurring within the Legal Services Sector. With Barristers being able to conduct litigation, there will be more opportunities for paralegals to work within the 'regulated' legal sector.
Also, since legal aid has been withdrawn for all but a few cases, the public need access to more cost effective legal advice and assistance. This gives further opportunities for trained and qualified paralegals with PPR Practising Certificates to work as paralegal practitioners under strict rules and guidelines of the PPR (Professional Paralegal Register).
Many organisations are now employing paralegals, as opposed to 'in house' solicitors, as a more financially viable alternative if there are tasks requiring a legal content to them. For this purpose and those mentioned above, it is vital that a paralegal has not only a recognised qualification but also membership of a recognised body.