Guidelines for the Utilization of Paralegals

Formally approved by the Colorado Bar Association Board of Governors at its Spring Meeting on May 17, 2008. 


History of the Guidelines

Guidelines for the Utilization of Paralegals were formally approved at the Spring Meeting of the Colorado Bar Association Board of Governors on May 17, 2008. 

The Guidelines for the Utilization of Paralegals were originally drafted by the Legal Assistant Committee of the Colorado Bar Association and formally approved by the Board of Governors in July 1986.  The first revision was approved in 1998. The Colorado Bar Association Paralegal Committee completed its second revision, update, and attorney review, and the proposed Guidelines were reviewed by the Colorado Supreme Court Office of Attorney Regulation Counsel for the unauthorized practice of law.  The Guidelines were formally approved by the Colorado Bar Association Board of Governors at their meeting on May 17, 2008. 

The purpose of the Guidelines is to provide a general framework of potential tasks that can or should be performed by a paralegal in an effort to assist with work flow.  ALL OF THE DUTIES ARE ASSUMED TO, AND MUST BE, UNDER THE DIRECTION AND SUPERVISION OF A LICENSED ATTORNEY.  They are intended to be a useful educational tool for attorneys and paralegals, and to provide a guide for the efficient delivery of legal services.  They are also designed to be used by way of illustration and not by way of limitation, and do not cover all duties.  The fact that a duty is not presented here does not mean that a paralegal is prohibited from certain activities, but rather that the following duties have been selected by the CBA Paralegal Committee as most commonly practice by paralegals in Colorado. 


Read the CBA Board of Governors Resolution regarding the utilization of paralegals.


The following are duties drafted and revised by members of the Colorado Bar Association Paralegal Committee, reviewed by attorneys in each practice area, and reviewed by the Colorado Supreme Court Office of Attorney Regulation Counsel for the unauthorized practice of law.  This is the second revision of the original Guidelines.

The Guidelines are divided into 21 specialty areas of practice.  (The first revision consisted of 18 specialty areas of practice.) One set of Guidelines (Commercial Paralegal) was removed with the 2007 revision as the duties are covered in other specialty areas.  Four new specialty areas were added with the 2007 revision:

  • Bankruptcy Paralegal: Creditor's Counsel
  • Bankruptcy Paralegal: Trustee's Counsel
  • Juvenile Litigation Paralegal
  • Social Security/Disability Law Paralegal

The purpose of the Guidelines is to provide a general framework of potential tasks that can or should be performed by a paralegal in an effort to assist with work flow.  They are intended to be a useful educational tool for attorneys and paralegals and to provide a guide for the efficient delivery of legal services.  They are also designed to be used by way of illustration and not by way of limitation, and do not cover all duties.  The fact that a duty is not presented here does not mean that a paralegal is prohibited from certain activities, but rather that the following duties have been selected by the Paralegal Committee as those most commonly practiced by paralegals in Colorado.  All of the duties listed here presume close attorney direction and supervision.

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