Legal Secretary/File Clerk?
Topic: Legal research and writing services for attorneys
May 22, 2019 / By Clementine Question:
I am going to law school in the Fall of 2008, and I was advised to get a job in a law office to build up my resume. Unfortunately all of the jobs I have found, paralegal, legal secretary etc, require prior legal experience. I dont have prior legal exp, which is why i am looking for an entry level legal position. How can I get in on the ground floor of a law firm to gain this elusive experience? I dont mind doing any kind of job, even 'coffee runner and copy clerk".. so long as I am in a law firm with more than one room. How can I find these types of jobs?
I have gotten job offers NOT related to Law, but my parents wont let me/help me move to Norfolk (VA) unless its a law-related position, and without them I wont have any money, or a place to stay.
Best Answers: Legal Secretary/File Clerk?
Bekki | 2 days ago
Volunteering at the court is a good idea. Try Legal Aid, Legal Services, the prosecutor's office and the public defender office too. All of them use volunteers and that is the way to get your foot in the door.
You might also try the student job office if you have a local college. Attorneys advertise jobs there. If you're headed to law school in 08, you are either in college or just out. If you went to college elsewhere, your college's job office can write a letter to the local college and ask that you be permitted to access the student jobs.
If you are really ambitious, you could research any attorneys who just got an occupational license (it means they are opening an office). Then go by and introduce yourself. Take a letter to leave in case they are not there. Offer your services. Even if it means helping them move in. The idea is to get your foot in and then make yourself indispensable.
You should also be talking to everyone you know to see if they know any attorneys who may need someone in the office. Even if that attorney doesn't need someone, s/he may know another attorney who does.
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Originally Answered: Which one of these majors would help me go in the direction of being legal secretary?
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Become a Legal Secretary
A legal secretary is responsible for most of the clerical duties in a law firm. When you become a legal secretary you will be spending a lot of time answering phone calls and emails, preparing court papers, typing and filing documents, maintaining a law library, fielding questions from clients and scheduling appointments. There are job opportunities available in private law firms, government agencies, insurance companies and financial institutions. Read on to learn more.
Difficulty: Moderately Easy
Things You'll Need
High school diploma or GED
Become a Legal Secretary
Get a high school diploma or a GED. You don't need a college degree to become a legal secretary; but acquiring secretarial skills and taking courses in business-related subjects when you are in high school will help put you on the right career path.
Bone up on your secretarial skills. Perhaps you are considering embarking on a second career or going back to work after your children are grown. Since legal secretaries spend a good part of their day typing letters and legal documents, word processing and keyboarding skills are a must. Take some classes at your local community college.
Familiarize yourself with legal documents. The public library is a good place to start. Once you begin working, you will learn as you go, but knowing the difference between a subpoena and an appeal will give you a heads up during your initial job interview.
Brush up on your "people" skills. Legal secretaries spend a lot of time dealing with high-powered attorneys and their demanding clients. You must be able to communicate effectively.
Obtain certification. Although certification is not necessarily a prerequisite for you to become a legal secretary, the profession is highly competitive and many big law firms require it, especially if you want to advance. Legal secretaries working for less than three years can become Accredited Legal Secretaries (ALS) and those working for more than three years can be certified as Professional Legal Secretaries (PLS). For more information, contact the National Association of Legal Secretaries (see Resources below).
Get a "temp" job. Many temporary jobs in this field obtained through an employment agency lead to full-time work. A temporary position will give both you and the employer an opportunity to try each other out.
Read more: How to Become a Legal Secretary | eHow.com http://www.ehow.com/how_2068958_become-legal-secretary.html#ixzz1Y3pwJjer
Why do you need your parents to move? whatever the job is just make sure you're making enough to support yourself. Law schools like any type of work experience not just law, actually, it's preferable if you have some other experience. You may also want to try being an administrative assistant, etc at a law firm, you'll learn about the legal world, but paralegals and legal assistants for the most part have gone to paralegal school. Additionally, depending on your experience thus far, you won't be able to work for a decent sized firm, and working for a one room law office IS the best experience because you'll be doing the most. Working in the mailroom at a huge firm is NOT going to look as good on your resume as saying you filed x, y, z or prepared forms, etc for a smaller office. Any more related questions, feel free to email me.
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See if there is a program where you volunteer with the court. Even if only for a month. That is how I got my paid intership job in a big lawfirm before college. Someone saw me working hard and working well and liked me and gave me a break and now the rest is history.
The field is very competative that unless you pass someones test, you don't get to play the game unless you are really really top notch.
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Seek out a local employment/saffing agency which specializes in job placement in law firms. Unfortunately, these types of legal employment agencies have an exclusive hold on these types of job opportunities which are not readily advertised in local newspapers.
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Originally Answered: What can I do with a Legal Secretary/Assistant Associates Degree?
With your needs, a government job might be good. You would be entry level in administrative, but you should look in offices that deal with compliance (labor and other areas), legislative (there are FT jobs in some areas), and related. Most employers do not consider the GPA, only whether you passed certain classes. I would add some public admin coursework if you have it, in order to give you more credits toward government service. Healthcare is another possibility, as there are many legal-related areas in the field. Again, take healthcare classes if you choose that route.