Law Clerks mostly work in legal firms, however there are also opportunities for employment in government departments, real estate and settlement and conveyance agencies.
Law Clerks provide clerical and administrative assistance to lawyers. They may be required to draft correspondence to clients, solicitors or third parties, and to take telephone enquiries on the lawyer’s behalf. Law Clerks may also manage client cases where there is not a great deal of complexity involved in the procedures. Under the supervision of a lawyer, they undertake research and administrative duties associated with the case. Law Clerks do not provide legal advice or make any decisions regarding action on the case.
The nature of the day to day duties of a Law Clerk will depend on the area of law they are working in. For example, a Law Clerk working in conveyance will prepare transfers of land for the sale, purchase or rental of commercial or residential properties. In the area of probate, the Law Clerk will be involved in the preparation of wills.
One of the most interesting and challenging tasks a Law Clerk will undertake, is researching previous legal cases where the judgement of the court may be used as supporting evidence for a client’s claim.
The nature of the Law Clerk’s daily duties will also be determined by the size of the law firm and the amount of work being handled.
Basic skills required of a Law Clerk are:
- an understanding of legal terminology
- excellent research and analysis skills
- clear and articulate verbal communication skills
- ability to write precise and professional correspondence
- advanced organisational and administrative skills