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Becoming a Ligitation
Secretary or PL
A Career in the Field of Large Class Action Law Firms-
by Ric Riccobono - Executive Director
If you are an avid reader of our ongoing Articles, you have discovered some of the numerous avenues of career opportunities that are available to you in the various Legal Field Careers. Often decisions on what Article topic to discuss comes directly from you, the LegalFieldCareers.com site visitor. One we have not discussed in detail comes from a visitor to the LFC site doing a search for Litigation Secretary. We found this interesting, so we decided to cover it in more detail in this Article. In this instance the topic is Litigation Secretary or Paralegal as it applies to large class action law firms.
Generally speaking, Litigation Secretaries work in the offices performing fundamental administrative duties, providing assistance with legal functions, helping with research and drafting documents. While they would not be allowed to give legal advice, calculate legal fees or perform representation in court, they do however; frequently work with court administrators, judges, clients and staff.
As a THORNHILL Educational Systems Legal Field Careers graduate you would be highly qualified to pursue a career in this category. As a THORNHILL graduate you will have been given the highest standards of tools you'll need to compete. You’ll be schooled in organization and proceeding skills, knowledge of briefs, pleadings, keeping time records, establishing client relations, calendar and scheduling necessities and much more. You will have also learned the importance of details in preparation and proficiency.
It is an interesting decision, "would it be less stressful to be a litigation secretary or Paralegal in a small firm or a large firm that specifically deals in large financial class action law suits?" One way to examine this is to look at it this way, in a small firm you may very well be the only litigation secretary or Paralegal in the firm. This will mean heavier workloads and tighter deadlines would be piled on you. In a large class action firm it is more than likely that there will be a large staff to help divide the workload. In a small firm, competition elevation can often be a problem and raises can be at a much slower rate. In a large firm while you would be competing for the promotions, there is often more potential for advancement and a step up in income and bonuses.
In regards to salary potential, and using Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median salary (2014) was $42,770. Average Litigation Secretaries in the United States make around $50K annually. However depending on the state, and degree of experience and skills you have developed, according to PayScale, is often $71,013, with performance and career length given high importance. Paralegals can make even more.
The obvious question is; how to determine, in advance, which firm will give you the highest probability to receive the highest bonus and promotional potential. While that's just about like asking ‘how much does a car cost’ realize this, when you apply for a job you will get screened by the HR manager or someone who is designated to hiring, you should also 'screen' the company as best you can to see how much water is in the pool before you jump in. Initially, Consumer Review directories may give a few hints. Also, make sure that you ask, during the interview, about the firm’s policy on promotional potential and policy. Try to have an understanding of salary, potential promotion bonuses, and don't forget the benefits. Also, get a feel of the place, and see if it is a good fit for you. Being well prepared is a necessity.
The bottom line is to ask questions and think; it’s your decision and your life.
THORNHILL Educational Systems - LegalFieldCareers.com
Written by Ric Riccobono, Attorney at Law
Director LAVC Extension Program
Actor-Producer-Director with over 28 Years in the Entertainment Industry
Who's Who in America and the World 2006-2013
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