The Legal Secretary with supervision provides clerical and secretarial support services for a wide variety of legal functions; and performs related duties as needed by the supervisor.
- The Legal Secretary must have an understanding of legal procedures and formats.
- The Legal Secretary is normally in charge of typing from rough drafts, verbal instructions, or dictating equipment.
The Legal Secretary is responsible for typing correspondence, memoranda, complaints, motions, answers, warrants, subpoenas, commitments, hearing reports, interviews, depositions, briefs, points and authorities, extraditions, jury instructions, verdicts, opinions, ordinances, resolutions, contracts, and related legal documents under the supervision of her superior. The Legal Secretary is responsible to maintain files and indexes. She is responsible for the recording of trial information, dates, pleas, convictions, acquittals, sentences and other dispositions.
The Legal Secretary must file documents with the courts on behalf of the Attorney or Law Firm that she is working at. The Legal Secretary is responsible to provide any discovery or case information to the attorneys that she is working. The Legal Secretary must report any proof of prior offenses or rap sheets to the proper authorities by telephone, fax or by mail. The Legal Secretary must maintain security of any data in accordance with regulations that govern said data. The Legal Secretary receives many different types of information pertaining to a case or individuals involved in cases so she is suppose to make sure that she maintains the privacy act by not revealing this information other than to the appropriate parties involved in the legal action.
The Legal Secretary is responsible to prepare calendars for the courts and if necessary for the Law Firm. The Legal Secretary Job function includes reviewing and processing misdemeanor and felony complaints. She is responsible for information, indictments, and search warrants as part of her duties in a law firm. The Legal Secretary is responsible to maintain statistics preparing reports for the court system. The Legal secretary needs full knowledge of standard office methods in a legal environment office. The Legal Secretary must have knowledge of office equipment such as personal computers, dictating/transcribing equipment and standard fax machines. The Legal Secretary must have knowledge of Standard English usage and grammar as well as the legal terminologies.
The Legal Secretary is expected to be able to read and transcribe legal documents. The Legal Secretary needs to be able to know legal document layout and format. The Legal Secretary should be able to use word processing software. The Legal Secretary must understand and follow oral and written directions. The Legal Secretary must then be capable to type and assemble information into proper legal format from outlined instructions or established procedures. The Legal Secretary maintains a variety of files and legal documents. The Legal Secretary is expected to work independently in the absence of specific instructions. The Legal Secretary must have good communication skills able to explain things in both written and oral format. The Legal Secretary must be able to work well with the staff explaining things in a very coherent and legal matter of fact. The Legal Secretary must have a good working relationship with departmental staff, legal, and court personnel; maintain confidentiality; in an ongoing atmosphere. The Legal Secretary must be able to type 50 net words per minute, use a computer, organize and prioritize work.
Most Legal Secretaries need two years of clerical experience in legal setting or at least one year of clerical experience in a legal setting performing the duties of office Assistant II in order to obtain the position working in their position. Different legal offices and/or court systems set forth the standards for their Legal Secretaries. There are rules and regulations that are set up by the state that Legal Secretaries must adhere too but the standard operating procedures for each office varies in accordance with the type of law being practiced, the size of the law firm and the amount of Legal Secretaries working for the law firm. Some law firms are very large and the Legal Secretaries work in a secretarial pool performing services for many different attorneys. Other law firms are smaller with two or three attorneys using only one or perhaps two Legal Secretaries in this case the Legal Secretary usually does the same type of legal work using the same forms etc. making her job function much easier.