Supreme Court of Wisconsin








No. 04-03



In the matter of the Licensure and Regulation of Paralegals




APR 24, 2008


David R. Schanker

Clerk of Supreme Court

Madison, WI






On February 13, 2004, the Board of Governors of the State Bar of Wisconsin filed a petition asking this court to establish a system for mandatory licensure and regulation of paralegals in Wisconsin. A public hearing was conducted by the court on October 27, 2004, at which numerous persons appeared. The court took the matter under advisement pending consideration of certain issues, including jurisdiction to regulate nonlawyers and possible ramifications for a pending petition addressing the unauthorized practice of law. On April 7, 2008, the court, having considered all written submissions and previous testimony, discussed this matter in open administrative conference. The court recognized the essential contributions of paralegals to our legal system and their legitimate desire for recognition of their expertise and professionalism. However, the court also acknowledged the reality that the prospect of creating an entirely new regulatory and enforcement structure or dramatically expanding existing agencies presents a daunting task in the present economic climate. Therefore,

IT IS ORDERED that the petition is denied.

IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that the Board of Governors of the State Bar of Wisconsin and interested paralegal organizations are invited to consider the merits of a voluntary registered paralegal program such as the program adopted by the Florida Supreme Court, and may, if they deem it appropriate, submit a rules petition to the court proposing a voluntary plan for the registration of paralegals in Wisconsin.[1]

Dated at Madison, Wisconsin, this 24th day of April, 2008.






David R. Schanker

Clerk of Supreme Court



[1] See In re: Amendments to the Rules Regulating the Florida BarFlorida Registered Paralegal Program, No. SC06-1622 (Fla. Nov. 15, 2007) (eff. Mar. 1, 2008).