The role of the legal secretary is to support the lawyers and paralegals in a law office or organization. As legal secretaries tend to posses a specialized skill set across various computer programs, the tasks for which they are responsible can range from more traditional secretarial jobs such as answering phones and taking messages to creating detailed spreadsheets or preparing law documents.
Legal secretaries carry out a wide range of administrative work within a law office or organization. Lawyers and paralegals do not always have the time or know-how to work with computer technologies; this is where legal secretaries are needed. The technologies they have mastered include computer programs involving word processing, creating spreadsheets, preparing all kinds of presentations, managing documents, managing hours and billing of employees within the office, keeping a detailed and organized calendar, transcribing documents or recorded conversations, desktop publishing, videoconferencing, and so on.
Legal secretaries must also interact with all kinds of people on a regular basis. The kinds of communication involved in a day's work involve face-to-face, phone and e-mail communication, and even video conferencing with clients, lawyers, paralegals, opposing counsel, city officials and more.
Legal secretaries are also responsible for a great deal of writing. They are often the people who prepare first drafts of correspondence or memos, and also often proofread legal documents including briefs and pleadings. They also deal with project management, keeping paper and electronic files in order, keeping track of many deadlines, setting up appointments, and maintaining a detailed calendar.