What Does a Legal Administrative Assistant Do?
A legal administrative assistant or legal secretary does everything a non-specialized administrative assistant does, like managing schedules and filing papers. He or she also fills extra responsibilities associated with law practice, like legal research and - with supervision - legal document preparation. Although they cannot give legal advice, legal administrative assistants are essential to the law firm's operations. Schools offering Legal Administrative Assistant degrees can also be found in these popular choices.
A Day in the Life of a Legal Administrative Assistant
Frances is a fictional legal administrative assistant. She earned an Associate of Applied Science in Legal Secretary Studies, and she earned the Accredited Legal Secretary certification from the National Association of Legal Secretaries (NALS). She helps a law firm run smoothly, but her day only starts with making coffee!
Legal Research and Legal Document Preparation
Frances scans law journals and legal books. She finds articles relevant to Attorney Brown's case and marks the pages for her. Later, the legal administrative assistant works with a paralegal to prepare and type up summonses and subpoenas for the lawyers to approve.
When client couples arrive, our legal administrative assistant greets them with professional charm and pages the attorneys. An important client on the West Coast calls with urgent concerns. The legal secretary transfers the phone call to Attorney Jones.
Managing Attorneys' Schedules
Soon our legal secretary arranges flights and hotel reservations for Attorney Jones and reschedules his appointments. Meanwhile, Frances checks the scheduler. Attorney Garcia must leave for a meeting soon. The legal administrative assistant pages the lawyer and calls a taxi.
Filing Legal Documents
The legal administrative assistant files documents in neatly labeled folders for easy reference. She scans other documents for electronic storage in the firm's capacious servers.
Closing the Law Office
Before leaving, the legal administrative assistant starts a computer backup. She checks computers, desks and filing cabinets. All legal documents should be locked up overnight.
Earning Legal Secretary Certification
The legal administrative assistant studies for NALS' Professional Legal Secretary Certification exam, an advanced credential. With her college degree and ALS certification, she may only need two years of experience to qualify, rather than three.
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