Legal Clerk Job Descriptions, Average Salary, Interview Questions

What Does a Legal Clerk Do?

Legal clerks play a crucial role in helping attorneys prepare for trials. They put together and organize information for use in legal documents, research legal precedents for cases, draft legal memos, gather case materials, and write reports. Many times, a legal clerk also performs administrative office tasks such as answering phones, signing for packages, greeting guests, monitoring mail, managing office supplies, and making photocopies. A legal clerk should be organized, have solid research skills, and be comfortable handling confidential client information.

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National Average Salary

Legal clerk salaries vary by experience, industry, organization size, and geography. To explore salary ranges by local market, please visit our sister site zengig.com.

The average U.S. salary for a Legal Clerk is:

$46,450

Legal Clerk Job Descriptions

Example 1

Technology is at the core of our business – we don’t just sell technology, we use it. The power of digital interviewing allows you the flexibility of using your computer or mobile device to record your interview on your own schedule in the comfort of your home. Our recruiting process allows you to tell your story in a stress-free way that is interactive and fun, so if you receive a link to Share your Story with us, we hope you have an awesome digital experience.

Get inspired by the work you’ll do

  • Support attorneys and paralegals in the legal department
  • Enter agreements into the electronic signature platform for execution and follow up on a weekly basis to make sure the agreements are signed and a fully executed copy is received.
  • Enter all agreements into the contract management system
  • Scan or read incoming materials in order to determine how and where they should be classified or filed
  • Work with attorneys and paralegals to update and maintain forms and form files
  • Enter the document identification codes into the automated/computer system in order to determine the location of the documents to be retrieved
  • Gather materials to be filed from departments and employees
  • Perform periodic inspections of materials or files in order to ensure correct placement, legibility, and proper condition
  • Eliminate outdated or unnecessary materials, destroying them or transferring them to inactive storage according to file maintenance guidelines and/or legal requirements
  • Find and retrieve information from files in response to requests from authorized users
  • Perform general office duties such as typing, operating office machines, sorting mail, etc.

Your passion is sparked by

  • High School Diploma, some colleges preferred but not required
  • Established experience working quickly, accurately, and independently with minimal supervision
  • Solid background in maintaining a high level of professionalism and confidentiality with the ability to work as business demands require
  • Demonstrated proficiency with MS Office applications, especially Outlook, Word, and Excel
  • Proven verbal and written communication skills with the ability to use good judgment and common sense when interacting with outside/inside contacts

Example 2

We are looking for a legal clerk to handle case follow-up for civil litigation. Your goal will be to perform the job with little to no errors, learn quickly, and handle a large volume of legal documents in an appropriate amount of time. Our legal clerks handle the filing, document processing, and data entry of civil lawsuits related to debt collection. Although we are a debt collection firm, our collections handle all correspondence with debtors. We handle all filing and processing with the courts and communication with opposing counsels. This is a great position for someone looking to enter the legal field. We provide extensive on-the-job training and work directly with new hires as they learn legal processes.

Responsibilities:

  • Identify legal documents by title and contents
  • Enter legal data into our software system, Q-Law
  • Communicate with courts to follow up with cases
  • Regularly work lists of files to keep up to date
  • Work directly with a team of attorneys and clerks to keep files moving through the litigation process
  • Request and process documents with the court systems of the state of Florida. This includes scanning, copying, and mailing documents, as well as following up with the court regarding filings
  • Background drug, credit, and fingerprint tests done prior to hiring

Skills:

  • Well-organized, with sharp attention to detail
  • Ability to work under pressure
  • Good communication and literacy skills
  • A desire to learn more about civil litigation
  • Ability to learn quickly and ask the appropriate questions to learn the job to the best of your ability
  • Office experience preferred, but not required

Example 3

The Legal Clerk I is responsible for processing a variety of legal requests related to customer accounts that are received by the Bank such as levies, liens, garnishments, subpoenas, court orders, legal research requests, social security account verification, the establishment of fiduciary accounts and power of attorneys, bankruptcies, and releasing of deceased account holder funds to an estate or beneficiary.

Key responsibilities

  • Assists with department administrative duties such as opening, sorting, scanning, and distributing incoming electronic and postal mail, as well as creates cases for received requests to be tracked and managed electronically
  • Answers routine inquiries over the phone from a variety of internal and external parties including customers, branches, agencies, and attorneys
  • Review legal documentation provided and references any relevant laws and regulations to ensure requests and orders are processed in accordance with Bank and legal requirements
  • Conducts any necessary research and processes account holds and releases, payments, invoices, and processing fees as appropriate; notifies customers by mail of actions taken and files responses, records, and payments with courts, agencies, and attorneys
  • Ensure items are being processed and sent in to meet court dates and state regulations; documents case progress and keep scanned records of payments and request responses

Minimum qualifications and experience

  • 1-2 years of legal documentation processing or banking experience; or a combination of directly related education and experience

How to Hire a Legal Clerk

Consider the following when hiring a legal clerk:

  • Recruiting: Do you have the internal resources and tools to source and recruit for this role successfully?
  • Complexity: Do you need a senior professional, or will mid, or even junior-level skills suffice?
  • Duration: Is this a one-time project, or an indefinite need?
  • Management: Can you effectively direct the work effort?
  • Urgency: Are there any deadlines associated with this need?
  • Headcount: Do you have the budget and approval for an internal employee, or should you consider alternate options?

Answering these questions will help determine the best course of action for your current hiring need. Fortunately, various great options exist for every scenario, no matter how unique. When hiring a legal clerk, we recommend the following options:

1. Use 4 Corner Resources (or another professional recruiting firm)

The heavy lifting is done for you when working with a top-tier staffing company like 4 Corner Resources. We source, screen, recruit, and deliver only the most qualified candidate(s), saving you significant time and effort throughout the hiring process while you remain focused on your core business. Understanding your needs and ensuring the right candidate for the position is the key to our success.

This is the best route to take when:

  • You need to fill the position quickly
  • You want access to a vast talent pool of high-quality, prescreened candidates
  • Your position is suited for temporary hiring services, contract staffing, or contract-to-hire recruiting, and you intend to direct the work activity.
  • You are hiring an employee as a direct placement but aren’t able to recruit effectively or efficiently with your internal staff. 
  • You aren’t familiar with current salary rates, market trends, and available skill sets
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2. Advertise your opening on a top job board

Your best option may be to advertise your opening on a proven job board. There are many widely used job sites out there that draw visits from qualified candidates. If you have someone internally who can dedicate the time and energy to sort through applications and screen individuals effectively, this can be a great choice. 

We recommend using a job board when:

  • Your internal recruiting team has the knowledge and experience to assess candidate qualifications
  • You are hiring a direct employee and have time to manage the entire recruiting effort 
  • You have a process for receiving, screening, and tracking all resumes and applications
  • You are prepared to respond to all applicants

There are many career sites out there. Here are the two we recommend for a legal clerk opening:

LinkedIn

LinkedIn is a social network for job seekers, professionals, and businesses. With this popular job site, you can enhance your brand and advertise your open position to a wide audience of motivated, qualified candidates. Job postings on LinkedIn are also extremely streamlined and user-friendly, making it even easier for candidates to apply. Additionally, applicants can use their LinkedIn profile instead of a resume to expedite the process. 

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CareerBuilder

CareerBuilder has been a trusted source for hiring since 1995. Reach 80+ million unique, diverse U.S. job seekers annually by posting your jobs through their talent acquisition channels. Through CareerBuilder, you can engage candidates and drive them into your sourcing pipeline. We recommend using CareerBuilder for hiring when you have the internal resources and processes to review, screen, and reply to all applicants.

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3. Leverage your internal resources

You can utilize your own website, social media, and employees to assist in your search for top candidates. 

A company website posting should be the first step in notifying prospective candidates that you are hiring. Social media can also be a powerful tool for spreading the word about your new opening. As far as exposure is concerned, this option can be as good as some job boards when you have a large enough following across various platforms, like LinkedIn, Instagram, Facebook, TikTok, and Twitter.

Current employees are every organization’s greatest asset. Encourage your internal team to promote job openings to their network by offering cash and other incentives.

We recommend these options when:

  • Your brand has great name recognition
  • You can consistently monitor and respond to candidate activity through your website and social media accounts
  • You have a process in place to quickly and broadly communicate job openings and requirements
  • You have an effective employee referral program in place

If you aren’t sure which path is best, schedule a discovery call today with our seasoned recruiting professionals. The 4 Corner team is on standby to help you find the best option for your unique hiring need.

Sample Interview Questions

  • What are the qualities of a good legal clerk?
  • How would you describe your writing style?
  • What have you done to improve your knowledge in the last year?
  • What do you consider your greatest strengths? Your greatest weaknesses?
  • How fast can you type?
  • Why are you a good candidate for this position?
  • Which areas of law are you most interested in?
  • How would you describe a typical day in this position?
  • Do you have experience with billing?
  • Which software programs are you familiar with?
  • Do you have good phone communication skills?
  • How do you measure success?
  • Are you familiar with case management software? Which ones?
  • Are you proficient in drafting depositions, summonses, and subpoenas?
  • How would you prepare a case file?
  • How do you handle stress?
  • How do you ensure the accuracy of your work?
  • Can you give an example of when you improved efficiency in the office?
  • What is your experience dealing with confidential information? How do you protect it?
  • How would you deal with a demanding client?
  • How do you prioritize your workload when you have multiple tasks and deadlines to manage?

Need help hiring a Legal Clerk?

We match top professionals with great employers across the country. From filling urgent job openings to developing long-term hiring strategies, our team is here to help. Review our staffing solutions, browse our award-winning Staffing Corner blog, or call today. We look forward to connecting with you soon.

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