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National Certificate: Paralegal Practices


Level: 5

SAQA ID: 97228

Credits: 131



The purpose of the qualification is to provide the qualifying learner with a basic knowledge and understanding of the South African legal system, fundamental laws, their application and social context so as to enable the learner to provide supervised support and assistance in a paralegal environment.

Qualifying learners will be able to:

  • Apply fundamental knowledge and understanding of law to a specific problem within the South African legal context.

  • Apply appropriate technology in order to conduct legal research on behalf of a legal or paralegal practitioner.

  • Communicate with internal and external clients in a paralegal or legal workplace.

  • Guide and refer clients in a paralegal context.

  • Assist in solving problems in a paralegal context by working in a team and individually.

  • Provide administrative and organisational support in an office environment.

  • Exercise ethical conduct, values and professionalism when dealing with all clients.

    This qualification equips learners to make a meaningful contribution to South Africa's constitutional democracy by enhancing access to justice and promoting economic and social transformation.


    This qualification is meant to prepare qualifying learners for supervised practice as paralegal assistants in all sectors of the industry, which includes:

  • Community-based paralegal Advice Offices.

  • Non-governmental organisations.

  • Public institutions.

  • Commercial institutions.

  • Private practices.

    Paralegal assistants play an important role in providing support services to legal and paralegal practitioners; as well as limited assistance to members of the public. This results in a greater capacity to address the growing social demand for legal services and limited legal assistance as South Africans embrace democracy and seek to protect their rights.

    This qualification will produce qualified and competent assistants to ensure that primary legal services are more accessible and affordable to the public. It includes legal, administrative and social knowledge and skills; although the emphasis is on providing support or supervised practice. It intends to equip the learner with the necessary life skills and has an integrated approach on critical cross-field outcomes. This certificate establishes minimum standards and contributes to quality service provision; as a result communities will receive assistance in compliance with ethical and professional standards.

    This qualification will provide a career-path for those qualifying learners intending to further their studies in all sectors of the paralegal or legal profession. The portable unit standard format allows specific unit standards to contribute to qualifications in the legal, development, public administration and commercial fields. This qualification will facilitate the accumulation of credits through institutionalised and workplace learning. The qualification also provides learners who have gained relevant experience in the workplace with an opportunity to gain credits through a RPL process. 

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