Legal InvestigatorJob Description, Salary, Career Path, and Trends

Becoming a legal investigator is much like becoming a private investigator, but they will report to a specific lawyer or law firm. Legal investigators will work to find out information that could be useful in a law case that their lawyers are building against a person or entity. Their roles may include visiting crime scenes and documenting behaviors or other notable items, obtaining records, interviewing witnesses, making calls to set up appointments, and testifying in court when needed.

Legal investigators are crucial members of their team. They must be extremely detail-oriented, trustworthy, and have excellent written and verbal communication skills. They may work long hours or atypical schedules, so those looking to become legal investigators should be prepared to be on call, especially during an important case.

Sample job description #1

ABC Company’s civil litigation firm seeks an Investigator for our (City, State) office.

Responsibilities

  • Interview clients about their work history and exposure to asbestos
  • Locate and interview witnesses
  • Research clients’ work history and work sites to determine what asbestos products were present and how they correlate to the work function
  • Perform extensive internal, library, and on-line searches
  • Attend and perform document reviews to identify relevant and useful documents

Qualifications

  • Ability to work under pressure due to time and content sensitive deadlines
  • Strong computer skills
  • Experience with legal research and interview skills and techniques is preferred
  • Must be able to work independently and as part of a team to establish and foster working relationships with attorneys, investigators, paralegals, and legal assistants
  • Detail oriented with the ability to analyze and problem solve
  • Prior work experience in construction, automotive, industrial, shipbuilding, law enforcement, or similar trade profession is preferred. Experience in plaintiff-side litigation is strongly desired

Sample job description #2

In this position, as a neutral fact-finder, you will conduct investigations into allegations of individuals and businesses involved in activities that are in violation of (State’s) consumer protection laws and regulations. You will work independently under general supervision and perform a full range of investigative assignments. Investigations typically include researching and gathering evidence, interviewing witnesses, writing citations, thoroughly documenting the investigative process, and participating in administrative hearings. You may serve as an expert witness and conduct undercover investigations. In this position you are not required to respond to situations involving threats to public safety or perform duties that consist of actively preventing or detecting crime, or perform duties that primarily provide community protection, and you do not obtain warrants of arrest.

  • Telework is not available during training (3-12 months), then 1-3 days of telework will be approved if eligibility requirements are met.

Duties include, but are not limited to, the following

  • Conducting investigations
  • Maintaining detailed records, preparing reports, and drafting legal documents
  • Interacting with consumers, businesses, attorneys, and other government agencies
  • Ensuring compliance with state statutes and rules
  • Facilitating resolutions of consumer complaints
  • Initiating legal action and negotiating settlement agreements
  • Acting as an expert witness in administrative and judicial proceedings
  • Tactfully and calmly handling conflict

Ideal investigator candidates will have

  • Excellent communication skills
  • The ability to thrive while balancing multiple priorities and cases
  • The ability to apply strong analytical skills in determining violations of the law
  • Exceptional writing skills

Preferences

Preference may be given to applicants with one or more of the following:

  • Juris Doctorate
  • Bachelor’s degree or higher
  • Investigative experience
  • Experience analyzing and applying laws

Typical qualifications

  • The ability to speak clearly, concisely, and effectively
  • The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas as presented verbally
  • The ability to use case management software systems
  • The ability to use computer relational database software
  • The ability to deal with people in a manner which shows sensitivity, tact, and professionalism
  • Knowledge of agency, professional, and/or industry standards and practices
  • Knowledge of interviewing techniques
  • Knowledge of investigative techniques and processes
  • Knowledge of civil and criminal justice laws
  • Knowledge of legal processes and procedures

Sample job description #3

Purpose of your role

As a Financial Crimes Investigator, you will be responsible for identifying and monitoring Financial Crime activities such as fraud, money laundering, and terrorist financing. You will be conducting investigations and reporting findings to the relevant US authorities. You will play a critical role in protecting ABC Company and its customers and ensuring the company meets its regulatory obligations.

What you do

  • Conduct 2nd level investigations from alerts generated by ABC Company monitoring systems as well as alerts raised by front line teams.
  • Drive and facilitate the continued optimization of Financial Crimes detection systems by way of rule reviews, trend analysis, and customer & threat profiling
  • Monitor and communicate volume and quality metrics
  • Think critically about the customer’s activity vs. customer profile
  • Engage with external partners, consortiums, and other financial institutions to exchange knowledge and gain a deeper understanding of Financial Crime trends
  • Manage comprehensive investigations through to reporting to the applicable governing authorities
  • Ensure maintenance of thorough investigation records
  • Work in conjunction with other areas of the organization to design and implement changes to processes and procedures
  • Update and train on internal documentation on work processes
  • Support the development and enhancement of the Financial Crimes team
  • Supporting and providing feedback to junior financial investigators/team members
  • Delivering training and communicating financial crime updates to the wider business
  • Contribute to a high standard of service to all internal/external clients

What you bring

  • 3+ years experience in Financial Crimes investigations ideally within the financial sector
  • Knowledge of current Risk, Anti-Fraud, and Anti-Money Laundering obligations and frameworks
  • Understanding of red flags, criminal typologies, and trends
  • Ability to investigate, make logical findings, and clearly articulate those findings
  • Ability to prioritize work and resources, keeping business objectives at the forefront of the decision-making process
  • Strong stakeholder management and problem-solving skills
  • Strong communication skills, both written and verbal, with the capability to articulate complex technical information
  • Ability to maintain high standards of accuracy and work under pressure to achieve deadlines
  • Demonstrated self-initiative and ability to work unsupervised
  • High level of personal integrity, commitment to confidentiality and privacy principles
  • Experience working closely with an operational function and frontline staff
  • Technical skills, MS Office Suite (Intermediate)

Average salary and compensation

The average salary for a legal investigator is $62,500 in the United States. Position salary will vary based on experience, education, company size, industry, and market.

LocationSalary LowSalary High
Phoenix, Arizona$62,150$84,100
Los Angeles, California$70,150$94,900
Denver, Colorado$58,450$79,050
Washington, DC$71,200$96,300
Miami, Florida$58,150$78,700
Orlando, Florida$53,650$72,600
Tampa, Florida$54,200$73,300
Atlanta, Georgia$56,850$76,900
Chicago, Illinois$65,350$88,400
Boston, Massachusetts$70,650$95,600
Minneapolis-St. Paul, Minnesota$56,300$76,200
New York City, New York$74,400$100,650
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania$60,550$81,950
Dallas, Texas$58,950$79,800
Houston, Texas$58,450$79,050
Seattle, Washington$68,000$92,000
National Average$53,150$71,900

Sample interview questions

  • Share an experience you had in dealing with a difficult person and how you handled the situation.
  • How perceptive are you?
  • What would you say is the hardest part about being a legal investigator?
  • Why do you want to work here?
  • Which technical laws are you most familiar with? Do you have experience working in software industries?
  • Do you have any professional certifications?
  • Have you ever had to collect information from witnesses in a company?
  • What’s the most important step in running a legal investigation?
  • How do you ensure your evidence doesn’t become contaminated or messed with?
  • If you could describe your previous employer’s legal investigations, would you describe them as positive or negative?

Legal Investigator Jobs in Ashburn

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