2019-04-03 by NAHB
Crown Attorneys (also called Crown Counsel or Crown Prosecutors) are the lawyers who prosecute criminal cases in Canada’s legal system. Crown Attorneys are representatives of the state (which is symbolized by the “Crown” in their title) and they are responsible for acting in the public interest.
If you’re thinking about a career as a legal office administrator, working for a Crown Attorney offers a career path that is both dynamic and gives you an close-up look at the criminal justice system. Here are three important things you should know about working for a Crown Attorney.
1. Become a Legal Administrator for a Crown Attorney and You’ll See Criminal Law in Action
Crown Attorneys primarily work in criminal law and are responsible for prosecuting the Criminal Code, the Youth Criminal Justice Act, and provincial statutes. The criminal laws that Crown Attorneys prosecute range from less serious summary conviction offences, such as trespassing, to much more serious indictable offences, such as homicide and drug trafficking.
That means a legal office administration career with a Crown Attorney gives you a unique opportunity to see how Canada’s criminal justice system works behind the scenes. Crown Attorneys also tend to spend more time in court than any other type of lawyer. So if you become a legal office administrator for a Crown Attorney, you’ll have a much higher chance of seeing the litigation side of the law in action.
Crown Attorneys tend to spend more time in courtrooms than any other type of lawyer
2. Crown Attorneys Are the Ones Who Decide Whether to Prosecute Cases
In Canada’s legal system, it is up to the Crown Attorney to decide whether or not to lay charges and attempt to prosecute a case. Additionally, Canada has a large number of offences called “hybrid offences.” These are crimes that can be tried as either summary conviction offences or as indictable offences. It is up to the Crown Attorney to decide how to prosecute hybrid offences. This decision is usually based on the defendant’s criminal record since indictable offences are usually subject to longer prison sentences and higher fines.
While most Crown Attorneys work for the Attorney General of each province’s government, the decision about prosecuting a case is meant to be free of political influence. This means that the Attorney General—who is an elected politician—has little say over the Crown’s decision to prosecute, despite the Crown working directly for the Attorney General.
3. Crown Attorneys Do a Lot More Than Just Argue Criminal Cases
While prosecuting criminal cases is probably the most important part of a Crown Attorney’s job, it isn’t the only one. Crown Attorneys also frequently work with the police, for example, where they may provide legal advice for the police force’s investigation. They also may negotiate with the defence counsel about plea negotiations and they may make recommendations to a judge or justice about what penalty a defendant should face if convicted of a crime.
Crown Attorneys may negotiate plea deals with the defence lawyer of the accused
The diversity of the work means that legal office administrator careers spent working for Crown Attorneys offer the chance to experience many different aspects of the law. In fact, even the Crown Attorney’s workplace can be pretty unusual. For example, while some Crown Attorneys can be found arguing cases in large courthouses, others fly into remote settlements where temporary courtrooms are set up in schools, churches, or gymnasiums.
Are you ready for a new career?
Contact NAHB to learn more about our legal office administration courses.
2019-02-20 by NAHB
The diverse nature of law means that there are a variety of specialized areas you can work in as a legal administrative assistant. From family law to civil litigation, real estate, and corporate law, there is no lack of areas to choose from if you’re interested in joining the legal profession.
One path that a legal administrative assistant can pursue is in corporate law. Corporate law is the body of law concerning the formation and operations of a corporation. Working in corporate law is an attractive prospect for many, and offers a whole world of possibility.
If you’re interested in pursuing a career as a legal office administrator, read on to find out more about what you can expect from this exciting field.
Law Office Administrators Know Corporate Law Has Five Separate Principles
In corporate law, there are five attributes that generally influence how a corporation operates in the legal field. Knowing the main principles that guide corporate law can help you better understand the context of the work and daily tasks you may frequently encounter in legal office administrator careers.
These five principles are:
- Operating as a separate entity
- Limited liability
- Transferability of shares
- Perpetual existence
- Centralized, delegated management
In legal terms, a corporation is considered a separate entity, which means that it can own property, borrow money, pay taxes, and enter litigation. A stockholder is someone who invests in a corporation’s stock, and limited liability protects their personal assets from creditors or lenders, while transferability of shares helps ensure that they maintain individual control over their stocks. Every corporation wants to continue its business indefinitely, which means that they use centralized management to oversee their operations in order to ensure their perpetual existence in the market. These principles provide a framework that can guide legal office administrators throughout their work, and encourage a deeper understanding of how their responsibilities operate within corporate law.
Understanding how corporate law works is key to a career as a legal office administrator
How Legal Office Administrator Careers Fit into the Corporate Law Structure
The primary responsibility of a legal office administrator is to assist lawyers, working under their supervision to facilitate the work that a particular corporate law firm handles. As such, their work can take them to many different environments within corporate law.
A corporation may need assistance with a variety of legal issues, and the bigger the business, the more help it will need—a corporation may even have multiple offices across different jurisdictions. Some corporations use what’s known as in-house counsel, which means they hire lawyers to work exclusively for them, so you may find yourself working under the supervision of a lawyer whose only client is one corporation. Occasionally, some legal professionals choose to work locally for smaller corporate law firms, especially when they’re just beginning their career.
No matter the workplace, law offices need legal administrators who know how to properly handle their database, schedules, and more. In order to be prepared to overcome the challenges of working in corporate law, the comprehensive curriculum of legal office administration courses can help familiarize you with the comprehensive skills, software, and legal principles you’ll be working with day to day, as well as keep you informed of career opportunities and the finer points of a job search after you finish your training.
Are you interested in finding out how you can become a legal office administrator?
Contact the National Academy for Health and Business for more information.
2018-10-03 by NAHB
Attention to detail is one of the primary soft skills sought after by employers in the legal industry. Even minor mistakes can prove costly in the legal sector, so it’s essential for legal office administration students to develop excellent concentration in their daily work tasks.
A healthy mind is better able to spot potential mistakes and complete work to a highest standard. Developing attention to detail is, therefore, something that can be done outside of work hours by getting enough rest and arriving at work with enthusiasm every day. Here are five tips for maximizing your concentration and eradicating errors in the legal workplace.
2016-04-27 by NAHB
Confidentiality is the foundation of the law office/client relationship, since lawyers can only provide effective representation when there is full and open communication. When clients visit a law office, it’s of utmost importance that they feel secure that all information they provide to lawyers and any legal staff will be held secret and confidential, no matter what the nature of their case may be.
If you’re planning to pursue a career as a legal office administrator, you’ll be playing an important role in maintaining confidentiality in the workplace no matter which type of law office you choose to work in. Read on to find out how you can do your part to help protect client information, so they can continue to get the confidential legal representation they need.
Greeting Clients Professionally Once You Become a Legal Office Administrator
Many graduates with legal training go on to work at the front desks of law firms during their legal office administrator careers. Because they are the first person clients see when they enter the law office, it’s important for these professionals to greet clients kindly and professionally.
When greeting clients, maintaining confidentiality is important. You’ll want to remain friendly, but never ask about or discuss details of a client’s case. The details of their visits are between them and their lawyer, so you’ll never want to say things like “I assume you’re here to discuss ____?” as this could serve as a breach of trust in the attorney/client relationship.
Creating and Filing Documents with Confidentiality After Legal Office Administration Courses
Once you become a legal office administrator, you’ll help lawyers by creating and filing important documents that pertain to different cases. Since legal documents contain sensitive information, it’s important that they be handled with care.
When working with legal documents, your task management skills will play a key role in maintaining client confidentiality. Make sure that when you type up, print, and file away a document, that you complete each task before moving on to your next responsibility. By remaining focused, you’ll reduce the risk of forgetting a document in the photocopier where anyone can walk by and grab it, accidentally sending emails to the wrong recipients, or filing documents in the wrong folders or cabinets.
Share Files Securely Once you Become a Legal Office Administrator
Computers have transformed the way files are created, stored, and shared in the legal office environment. Some law offices have even gotten rid of filing cabinets and switched to computers or data storage services instead. If you work for a practice that stores data electronically, you’ll want to make sure that these documents are properly protected. Not only do these documents contain important case information, but they also contain important client information such as their addresses and social security numbers—which you wouldn’t want falling into the wrong hands.
Many law offices use computers instead of paper filing systems
In order to help keep these files safe, you’ll want to first make sure that your office internet connection is protected with a firewall to help block out anyone who’s unauthorized from gaining access. If your office uses a remote storage service, make sure that it’s a reliable source, and that everything that gets uploaded is password protected.
Want to complete your legal office administration courses in just 26 weeks?
Visit NAHB for more information about our diploma program, or to speak with an advisor.
2016-01-06 by NAHB
If you’re passionate about law and want to work with lawyers and paralegals, then legal office administration can be your ticket to a satisfying career.
Legal office administrators can be found in law firms of all shapes and sizes. In fact, the career path you find after graduation can be very different depending on which kind of law firm you decide to work for.
Here’s a look at the kinds of firms you’ll get to choose from after you graduate, and the type of career each has to offer.
Larger Law Firms Show That Bigger Can Sometimes be Better
If you like city living and want to work on top accounts with world-class lawyers, then you might be a good fit for a big law firm.
Big law firms can employ hundreds of professionals and have offices all over the world.
Big law firms are sometimes called corporate law firms. That’s because they often snap up the biggest contracts, which only large companies can afford.
These firms often have huge, towering offices in Canada’s biggest cities. Professionals working at these offices are often paid a little more than legal office assistants working at smaller firms. However, a bigger pay at a bigger office also often comes with more hours and more responsibility.
Medium-Sized Law Firms Offer the Best of Both Worlds
Medium-sized law firms can offer the best of both worlds to graduates who aren’t sure about where they want to work once they start their legal office administrator careers. Medium-sized law firms provide tons of variety, but a little less of the glitz and glamour that come with bigger firms.
That’s not to say that they don’t sometimes work on major cases, though. Many medium-sized firms still pull in big corporate clients with demanding cases.
Small Law Firms Offer Variety for Legal Office Administrators
If you like the idea of working with a small tight-knit team, then a smaller law firm might be the perfect place for you. Small law firms usually have teams of only two to twenty lawyers, paralegals, and office administrators. As a result, you’ll soon know all of your co-workers by starting up your career at a small law firm.
Small law firms tend to me more laid back and friendly.
In addition, small law firms tend to offer more variety than big and medium-sized law firms, and as an office administrator, you might find yourself working on a variety of different cases.
However, on the other hand, small firms can also come with smaller salaries than larger firms.
Boutique Law Firms are for Legal Office Administrator Grads Who Want to Specialize
As you complete your legal office administrator courses, you might find that you will enjoy come of your law courses a little more than others. For example, you might discover that you have a passion for family law, or that you shine best when you’re working on civil litigation.
If you want to specialize in one particular area of law once you graduate, then a boutique law firm might be your best bet.
These firms used to be small, but now they range in size from having just a few employees to having a few offices across the country. However, what they all have in common is that they specialize in one area of law. Some might only work on real estate law, while others might cover copyright law, or wills and estates.
There is one thing that boutique firms all have in common: they provide graduates with the opportunity to specialize in a specific area.
Do you want to become a legal office administrator?
Visit the NAHB to find out how you could complete your diploma in just 26 weeks!