Main purpose of the job:
Providing advice, assistance and representation to clients in relation to complaints and civil damages claims against the police and other public authorities, inquest representation and advice. Advocacy before the court. Progression of own case load on profitable and efficient basis, appropriate practice development activities and undertaking delegated tasks from the team leader.
Main key result areas
Attending and advising clients, drafting appropriate and thorough attendance notes, maintaining organised files, preparation of written advice and letters before claim.
Drafting of documents relating to court proceedings, compliance with civil procedure rules and limitation/court deadlines. Undertaking ongoing risk assessments and active case management of files.
Preparation of case plans and execution of same or appropriate delegation to junior members of staff under supervision.
Representing clients before relevant courts and attendance at court with counsel in civil proceedings before appropriate courts including the County Court, High Court (including judicial review proceedings), the Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court if applicable.
Responding to post, telephone enquires and queries from clients, other professionals, experts, colleagues and the legal aid agency in order to progress cases effectively and efficiently.
Liaison with team leader/supervising solicitor/department manager on progression of matters and delegated tasks, working in an efficient and profitable way to maximise department profit contribution to firm.
Instruction of counsel as appropriate to advise, appear, represent or review issues on behalf of client. Providing further information or material as requested.
Managing a case load, including a full risk assessment of all matters, whilst complying with legal aid franchising criteria/law society/solicitors regulation authority (SRA) rules and work type procedures whilst undertaking ongoing risk assessment and managing clients’ expectations effectively.
Control and management of work in progress ensuring that it is recorded and converted into paid profit costs effectively and efficiently.
Effective management of own time, ensuring that nonchargeable and chargeable hours targets are achieved.
Delegating and supervising work undertaken by others ensuring that the work on the file is carried out at the right level, thus maximising profitability and assisting the development of other staff (such as clerks and trainee solicitors etc).
To attend training courses/meetings as required to ensure that you achieve the necessary compliance with the SRA’s competency standards for solicitors. To achieve, by the required date, any other objectives necessary in order to maintain your practicing certificate. To ensure that you keep abreast of all relevant legislation and developments.
Ensuring that disbursements and debtors in the case load are managed in order to reduce the financial exposure of the firm.
To actively seek marketing opportunities ensuring opportunities are referred to the team leader and to assist in work type marketing initiatives with a view to achieving objectives. To seek opportunities to cross refer work within the firm.
Compliance with client care and complaints procedures in order to minimise the risk of negligence and comply with law society and SRA rules.
To actively promote the Stephensons brand at all times.
Authorised to undertake such work which may be specified against his or her name.
Current practicing certificate
Category supervisor status
Relevant course completion in area
Previous case load experience
Knowledge of work type (particularly civil actions against the police and public bodies, human rights, data protection and judicial review)
Good computer literacy across a range of programs
Knowledge of and experience in legal aid agency funding schemes and conditional fee agreements
Experience of supervising staff
Knowledge and skills
Effective working and awareness of profitability issues
Solicitors accounts rules
Professional conduct rules
Knowledge of legal aid agency contract specification
Case management systems
Relevant up to date knowledge of legislation and case law
Adaptability and flexibility
Ability to consider and identify relevant issues
Ability to work as part of a team or under delegated tasks reporting directly to team leader/supervising solicitor/department manager
Ability to manage time effectively and work efficiently
Stephensons client complaints rules and client care procedures
Personality / Other Qualities
Discretion and ability to work in a confidential work environment under pressure
Ability to work amidst frequent interruptions
Working under time orientated pressure
Ability to analyse issues and identify key points; providing a detailed case action plan and reporting back to team leader as appropriate
Approachable, patient, polite and able to respond to difficult situations acting in a calm, professional manner and managing client expectations
Confidence in own abilities
Please do not send enquiries to the department manager of the specific team.