Tacoma Community College is one of four community colleges in Washington that will begin offering training for students interested in a new field known as limited license legal technicians.
License training could begin as early as this spring, according to an announcement from the State Board for Community & Technical Colleges.
According to the board:
The LLLT license would allow technicians to provide limited family law legal advice directly to clients. The state Supreme Court endorsed the license in 2012, making Washington the first and currently the only state to authorize the technicians.
In addition to Tacoma Community College, the training will also be offered at Highline, Edmonds and Spokane community colleges. Clark and Whatcom community colleges are in the process of setting up similar programs. Most classes will be available online.
The goal of the new field is to make routine legal services in family law -- divorce, child support and similar matters -- more available and affordable. The new technicians will not be lawyers, but will be permitted to provide limited advice and assistance to families. Such assistance would include completing forms, explaining procedures and other basic services.
LLLTs are different from paralegals, who work directly for lawyers and cannot give legal advice. The new technicians will be allowed to operate independently and provide limited legal advice.