Thursday, April 10, 2008

Wisconsin Supreme Court Denies Paralegal Regulation

In a blow to paralegal regulation, on April 7 and April 8 the Wisconsin Supreme Court denied the State Bar paralegal petition, which would have established licensure and regulation for paralegals.

The court will encourage the Bar to work with other interested groups to consider creating a voluntary certification program using programs currently used in other states as models. Even though the court denied the petition, the justices emphasized that they recognize the valuable service provided by paralegals.

Acknowledging the State Bar’s efforts Chief Justice Shirley Abrahamson said, “This has been a long labor, the State Bar task force was made up of many members and worked for about seven years.” Abrahamson noted the objectives of the paralegal petition were to recognize the important role paralegals can and do play in the daily practice of law and to set standards that would include requirements for continuing education credits and maintain ethical standards.

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