COVID-19 UPDATE: Bryant & Stratton College is remotely open and continues to serve our students. Learn More
Do you love a challenge? Have you been considering a career in the legal field? Then a fun and fulfilling career as a File Clerk could be right up your alley. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) Occupational Outlook Handbook predicts that demand for this type of specialist is on the rise.
A File Clerk is the professional who is charged with storing, maintaining, accessing and securing an entity’s documentation. This may require keeping up with physical documents, electronic systems, as well as databases. They will keep files updated and properly categorized, eliminating old files, or archiving them when necessary for the orderly maintenance of the entity’s records.
The job responsibilities of a File Clerk may vary to some degree depending on their employer. In some cases, as in a large law office, a you may only be responsible for one type of document, such as contracts or title documents. Here are some of the responsibilities of File Clerks:
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, file clerks, which share some characteristics with File Clerks, will see a 10 percent decline between 2016 and 2026. However, the BLS predicts that medical records and health information technicians, who more closely approximate the depth of specialization required of a File Clerk, will see a 13 percent rise in employment in the next decade. This is faster than the average for all occupations.
Job prospects will be best for those applicants who can show they already possess certain skills. These include basic analytical ability, good typing skills, understanding data organization and storage. Being able to work on your own or with a team and being able to prioritize is a must. A Legal Office Assistant diploma from Bryant & Stratton College could be just what you need to surpass the competition. Key courses include law office management and technology, office technology and software and computing skills.
A Legal Office Assistant diploma from Bryant & Stratton College will prepare you for a career as a File Clerk. One of the significant focuses of the diploma program is on case management, document and record maintenance and the handling of correspondence. It will also prepare you to support attorneys in both private firms as well as business and corporate legal departments.
Upon graduating from the program, you will be able to apply legal terminology correctly in legal documents. And, you will have the ability to read, analyze, interpret and prepare legal documents. These skills are necessary if you are to maintain, control, and secure documentation for an employer.
In addition to your documentation skills, you will be able to do research using both online and printed reference materials. You will be able to support a legal team, whether it is in a private firm or corporate offices. You will be also able to identify, interpret and apply legal ethics in your work.
A File Clerk can enter the career with only a high school diploma, but many employers are looking for post-secondary education. You will certainly need to know word processing and spreadsheet applications, at a minimum.
Those wishing to advance their careers in the legal field can apply the courses and credits from the Legal Office Assistant diploma to an associate degree in paralegal studies at Bryant & Stratton College.
You can expect on-the-job training as a File Clerk to bring you up to speed on systems of document management and storage. You may also have to learn relevant terminology and become familiar with any regulations that may apply to your situation. Furthermore, as a legal File Clerk, you will likely need to be aware of the deadlines imposed by the state and federal courts on various types of documents and responses.
File Clerks must be detail-oriented, organized, and have good technical skills. In addition, you must be able to work well within a team, or on your own. Legal matters tend to be fast paced, so you must be able to work well with deadlines. Acting with integrity lay at the core of every skill learned. In the legal field, you will come in contact with personal and sensitive client information. This must be kept confidential at all times.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the largest employer of information clerks, of whom file clerks are a part, in 2016 was local government, excluding education and hospitals at 13 percent. About 12 percent were employed in healthcare and social assistance. The federal government employed about 7 percent, while administrative and support services employed about 6 percent.
Legal File Clerks are most likely to be found in firms and organizations where large amounts of legal documents require their expert attention. Federal, state and local governments, private law firms, as well as the legal departments of companies are all good examples.
This is a full-time job. It is conducted in an office environment. Those in the legal field may work longer hours depending on pending deadlines and their workload. Because of this, and the fast pace of the legal profession, this career can be stressful at times.
While this information may help you in determining the right career path for you, understand that job market data from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Outlook Handbook is intended to provide insight into occupational opportunities, and is not to be construed as a guarantee of salary or job title. Bryant & Stratton College cannot guarantee employment in any field.
For insights into a career as a File Clerk, please visit the Paralegal section of our blog. Here you will find valuable information about careers in the legal field. Explore the website and be sure to visit the File Clerk Diploma page.