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Goverment Jobs
Published
January 5, 2019
Location
San Jose Metropolitan Area, California
Category
Job Type

Description

Description

Under general supervision, performs a variety of legal secretarial and clerical duties of considerable difficulty, prepares legal documents, abstracts information and performs a variety of other duties in support of County Attorneys.

The Office of the County Counsel is the general counsel for the County of Santa Clara, including the Board of Supervisors and all County departments and agencies, as well as certain other public entities. The Office provides all the day-to-day legal services expected from any in-house attorney, including advice and counsel regarding how to navigate emerging areas of law, civil litigation for the County, and negotiation and drafting of contracts and other legal documents. The Office's attorneys work in a wide array of practice areas, including civil litigation, labor and employment, health and hospital, public safety and justice, child welfare, probate/conservatorship, workers' compensation, general government advice and transactions, real property and public works, civil and code enforcement, and social justice and impact litigation. As public law attorneys, our work covers a wide array of policy matters that significantly affect the health, safety, and well-being of the County's 1.9 million residents.

Legal Secretaries in the Office of the County Counsel have the ability to work in a number of legal practice areas. Legal Secretaries will: assist attorneys in preparing for hearings in Federal and Statecourt, as well as other Federal and State administrative agencies; prepare legal correspondence, memoranda, and pleadings; file, research, and track legal papers with state, federal, and appellate courts; abstract information from files; manage attorneys' calendars and files; keep attorneys aware of scheduled events and approaching deadlines; and communicate by phone and email with clients, maintaining a high degree of confidentiality and professionalism at all times.

The Legal Secretary I works as a partner with attorneys, paralegals, and other legal assistants in the Office of the County Counsel to provide administrative support in civil legal proceedings.The position requires a solid background of clerical experience, some of which should be in a legal office. We seek someone who is proficient with the Microsoft Office Suite and has the ability to learn specialized legal case management software. Successful candidates must demonstrate excellent written and oral communication abilities evidenced by strong grammar and punctuation, effective writing and proofreading skills, and competency in formatting documents. The capability to work collaboratively with your colleagues to support several attorneys and to interact professionally with clients as shown through your interpersonal, customer service, and organizational skills are necessary characteristics.An eagerness to take on interesting challenges with a commitment to public service in a fast-paced, professional environment are all essential qualities for this job. All County Counsel personnel must maintain strict adherence to the confidentiality of the attorney-client privilege and attorney work product.

Applicants may also be considered for Legal Secretary Ipositions that are designated as Confidential and receive five-percent (5%) premium pay (pay range with premium: $2,362.88 to $2,871.92 biweekly; $5,119.57 - $6,222.49 monthly; $61,434.88 to $74,669.92 annually). Positions which are designated Confidential support the County Counsel's Labor and Employment Team, whose attorneys are involved in contract negotiations with various employee bargaining units, personnel and union grievances, employee discipline, arbitrations, and other personnel matters involving union members. Confidential Employees are not represented by SEIU Local 521.

Typical Tasks

  • Prepares legal correspondence, opinions, resolutions, ordinances, leases, contracts, orders, motions, complaints, warrants, subpoenas, commitments, indictment decisions, summons, demurrers, judgments, affidavits, trial briefs, appeals, writs, jury instructions, dismissals, reports and other legal documents;
  • Abstracts information from files and puts general information into proper legal form;
  • Files legal papers with proper court;
  • Maintains files of legal correspondence;
  • Performs calendaring functions;
  • Reads reports describing legislation affecting legal procedures;
  • Compares references with law library or other sources to check accuracy of citations;
  • Maintains law books;
  • Screens office and telephone callers, referring those who may be better served elsewhere; personally assists callers when possible;
  • Exercises considerable judgment and discretion in dealing with confidential matters;
  • May perform general office and legal clerical functions;
  • May be assigned to assist new attorneys to become familiar with office procedures, various court rules and legal forms;
  • Composes routine legal correspondence;
  • May perform transcription;
  • May be assigned as a Disaster Service Worker, as required;
  • Performs other related duties as required.
Employment Standards

Demonstrated education, training, and a period of legal clerical experience to acquire the following knowledge and abilities:

Training and Experience Note: The knowledge and abilities to perform this function are obtained through two (2) years of clerical experience, one (1) year of which must include working in a law office, or within a Justice System function, performing complex or responsible legal clerical work such as, preparing complaints, petitions, calendars and conducting civil and/or criminal discovery while working directly with and interfacing with attorneys in the performance of duties.

Demonstrated completion of twenty (20) semester units or thirty (30) quarter college units may substitute for one (1) year of the non-legal clerical experience.

OR

One (1) year of experience as a Legal Secretary Trainee in the County of Santa Clara.

Knowledge of:

  • Law office work, procedures, and terminology;
  • General office practices, procedures, and machines;
  • Court filing and calendar procedures;
  • Various court rules and procedures;
  • Standard legal forms and documents and formats;
  • Law library arrangement and other legal references;
  • Customer service principles;
  • English vocabulary, grammar, spelling and style/format;
  • Common office computer applications.

Ability to:

  • Prepare legal documents and reports from general instructions using appropriate computer applications;
  • Work under pressure and meet strict deadlines;
  • Abstract pertinent information from files to prepare legal documents;
  • Correct spelling, punctuation, and English grammar on draft copy;
  • Work independently in the absence of specific instructions;
  • Interpret and apply specific laws and ordinances;
  • Obtain information through interviewing;
  • Deal tactfully with members of the public and other government entities under stressful conditions.

**Departments may selectively recruit for typing speed up to 50 Net WPM, depending on departmental need.

Benefit and Retirement information may vary from bargaining unit to bargaining unit.Due to changes in State Law, current pension provisions described in the union contracts are not automatically applied. Specific pension benefits for new hires who start on or after January 1, 2013 may be different than indicated in the union contracts.

Click hereto access all Memoranda of Understanding and most recent Summary of Changes.

01
Please answer the following questions. Completion of the following supplemental questions is REQUIRED for your application and is an integral part of the evaluation process. Initially, it will be used to evaluate against the employment standards. For those applicants meeting the employment standards, this information will be critical in the subsequent competitive assessment to identify those candidates to be invited to continue in the examination process. Your responses to the questions may also be reviewed and scored in a Competitive Rating evaluation process based on pre-determined rating criteria. Your answers should be as complete as possible, as no additional information will be accepted from applicants once the Competitive Rating evaluation has begun. Please include the name of employer, job title, dates of employment and number of hours worked per week for questions asking about your experience. A response of "see resume" or "see application" will deem your application incomplete. Vague, incomplete or non-responsive answers could result in no or low scores in a competitive rating process. Do you understand this requirement?

  • Yes
  • No
02
Indicate the amount of clerical experience you have.

  • None
  • Less than one year (11 months or less)
  • One to two years (12 to 23 months)
  • Two to four years (24 to 47 months)
  • Four to five years (48 to 60 months)
  • More than five years (more than 60 months)
03
Describe your knowledge, skills, abilities, and experience performing clerical duties. Please include your job title(s), name of employer(s), number of hours worked per week, start/end date(s) of employment, and your typical responsibilities. If none, please answer "No Experience."

    04
    Indicate the amount of experience you have had performing complex or responsible legal clerical work, such as preparing and formatting pleadings, calendaring court deadlines, etc. while working directly with and interfacing with attorneys in the performance of duties.

    • None
    • Less than one year (11 months or less)
    • One to two years (12 to 23 months)
    • Two to four years (24 to 47 months)
    • Four to five years (48 to 60 months)
    • More than five years (more than 60 months)
    05
    Describe your experience working in a law office performing legal administrative assistant/secretary duties, such as formatting and filing pleadings, calendaring court deadlines, etc., while working directly with and interfacing with attorneys in the performance of duties. Include your job title(s), name of employer(s), number of hours worked per week, start/end date(s) of employment, and your typical responsibilities. If none, please indicate "N/A".

      06
      Please indicate the legal practice areas in which you have at least three (3) months of experience:

      • Appellate briefs and related work
      • Civil Affirmative litigation (filing of complaints, petitions, etc.)
      • Civil Defense litigation (filing of answers, etc.)
      • Collections
      • Contracts
      • Criminal litigation
      • Employment Law (hiring, terminations, performance issues, etc.)
      • Health and Hospitals
      • Justice Systems (criminal matters and/or the courts)
      • Juvenile Dependency
      • Labor Relations (contract negotiation, grievances, arbitrations, etc.)
      • Lanterman-Petris-Short Act (LPS ? Mental Health Conservatorships)
      • Medical malpractice
      • Planning and Land Use
      • Probate
      • Public Entity Administration (county, city, state, federal, etc.)
      • Public Safety (law enforcement, corrections, probation, etc.)
      • Real Estate (lease, purchase, sale, etc.)
      • Workers' Compensation
      • Other
      • None of the Above
      07
      If you checked "Other" in Question 6, please define the field of law in which you have experience. Please include your job title(s), name of employer(s), number of hours worked per week, start/end date(s) of employment, and your typical responsibilities.

        08
        For each of the legal practice area(s) in which you have experience noted in Question 6, please describe your experience. Please include your job title(s), name of employer(s), number of hours worked per week, start/end date(s) of employment, and your typical responsibilities. If you do not have experience as a legal administrative assistant/secretary working in any of the above legal practice areas, please answer, "No Experience".

          09
          Please indicate which of the following legal secretarial tasks which you are proficient fulfilling. Indicate ONLY those tasks in which you are proficient. The use of "proficient" in this question means frequent (weekly) completion of a task with a minimum of direction from the attorney or supervisor, indicating a basic to advanced skill level.

          • Create, prepare, and store documents in an electronic case management system
          • E-file documents in Appellate courts
          • E-file documents in Federal courts
          • E-file documents in State courts
          • Finalize and serve discovery-related documents/pleadings
          • Finalize for filing and service complex briefs, motions, and pleadings in Appellate Courts
          • Finalize for filing and service complex briefs, motions, and pleadings in Federal Courts
          • Finalize for filing and service complex briefs, motions, and pleadings in State Courts
          • Finalize for filing and service complex briefs, motions, and pleadings in the State or Federal Supreme Court
          • Format tables and/or spreadsheets in Microsoft Excel documents
          • Organize and maintain multiple volume paper or electronic files.
          • Prepare and format pleadings from unformatted documents
          • Prepare tables of contents and tables of authorities
          • Researching and/or applying court rules and procedures
          • Scan and/or import electronic media (documents, photos, audio, and video) into an electronic case management system and/or electronic content or document management system
          • Schedule and calendar court deadlines and/or invite meeting participants through Microsoft Outlook
          • Use of advanced scanner functions such as physical and electronic bates stamp imprinter, color settings resolution settings, brightness and color contrast settings.
          • None of the above
          10
          Please describe your work experience completing the above legal clerical tasks by providing a specific example of your proficiency in the identified tasks. Include your job title(s), name of employer(s), number of hours worked per week, and start/end date(s) of employment.

            11
            Please indicate which of the following software programs you are proficient using. Indicate ONLY those programs in which you are proficient. The use of "proficient" in this question means frequently (weekly) use of the specific software program accompanied by the ability to create, manipulate, merge, build, formulate, design, etc. within the program itself, indicating an advanced level of skill.

            • Microsoft Word
            • Microsoft Outlook
            • Microsoft Excel
            • Microsoft Access
            • Microsoft PowerPoint
            • Microsoft SharePoint
            • Prolaw (electronic case management system) or equivalent
            • Electronic Content or Document Management System (ECMS/EDMS)
            • Adobe Acrobat Pro
            • Judicial Council Forms (Forms Workflow or equivalent)
            • Westlaw
            • Lexis-Nexis
            • Westlaw Drafting Assistant or equivalent
            • Trial Director or equivalent
            • Trial Pad or equivalent
            • X-medius, Right Fax, or equivalent
            • None of the above

            * Required Question

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