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Practice Assistant - Dispute Resolution

Type: Permanent
Salary: £31,000 - 41,000 per annum
Location: Holborn

Owen Reed are recruiting for a Practice Assistant to work within the Dispute Resolution team.  This is full time Agile working 40% of time in the office.

The dispute resolution team handles a full range of litigation matters, from contract claims to large scale, complex multi-jurisdictional disputes and judicial review.  We regularly appear in the High Court and the Court of Protection as well as courts in the Channel Islands and overseas.  We also have significant experience of alternative dispute resolution and, in particular, arbitration and mediation.  We act for a broad array of clients including individuals, businesses ranging from small family businesses to significant corporates, banks, trustees and trust companies as well as schools, higher education institutions and not-for-profit organisations.  Our experience across this range of sectors ensures that our litigators understand the impact which a dispute can have on both an individual and at an organisational level.  Each dispute requires a tailored solution, and we are committed to working quickly with you to identify and understand the issues you are facing in order to achieve the best possible result.


Scope:

We are looking for an extremely organised and proactive Practice Assistant to provide a high level of professional support to their allocated Fee Earners as well as other members of the Department. They will be highly motivated, display outstanding attention to detail and have the ability to multitask with ease.  It is essential that they are a strong team player with a positive, up-beat approach.


Responsibilities:

Effective and proactive diary management, and awareness of Fee Earners' workloads to plan ahead

Has an excellent knowledge of all systems/processes used within the Department

Is professional and maintains effective communications with clients and Fee Earners, using an appropriate mix of communication styles

Researches new clients/contacts and prepares bios before meetings, and conducts basic research (on-line or otherwise) for Fee Earners when required

Arranges travel and any other activities on behalf of others, where appropriate

Monitors critical dates in the diaries of Fee Earners for their matters


Client Relationship and Business Development:

Provides excellent service to clients, fee earners and colleagues, in a timely and professional manner, presenting a positive image of the Firm at all times

Recognises, respects and honours client confidentiality at all times

Organises business development meetings and events for Fee Earners, and where they are held online offers technical support on the day

Assists the BD team in the production of business development materials

Understands and uses InterAction effectively to support fee earners BD efforts including recording all business development meetings in InterAction, and sets up reminders where follow-ups are needed with prospects on InterAction or other systems/logs as required


Document Production:

Produces typed work accurately, a high speed and in accordance with the firm’s house style

Makes effective use of the Document Management System

Creates new documents from the Firm’s templates, using contact data from InterAction where appropriate

Proof-reads all documents for spelling, grammar and sense, querying wording where appropriate

Proactively uses initiative to compose correspondence on behalf of fee earners, requiring focused concentration and attention to detail

Assists fee earners in the production of ebundles where required

Thoroughly understands and uses the full suite of tools used in production of documents and the firm’s templates for these 


IT Skills/Systems:

Maintains a high level of proficiency in core IT applications including the Microsoft Office suite (Word, Excel, PowerPoint and Outlook)

Makes suggestions for additional training, as required

Is capable of troubleshooting IT issues for fee earners and liaising with IT where these cannot be resolved within the team


File Management:

Ensures that files within the case management system are kept in good order so that documents can be easily accessed

Works in accordance with the department protocol in relation to e-filing

Adopts a pro-active approach and works with Fee Earners effectively, to maintain regular file management, ensuring all files are closed and archived, as appropriate, and a risk assessment having been undertaken

Keeps accurate records of all files sent to off-site storage via Records


Financial Risk Management:

Has an excellent knowledge and application of the Firm's procedures in billing, AML, Credit Control and debt management

Liaises with clients to obtain AML documentation and obtains relevant documentation from clients in a timely manner, as required by Fee Earners

Sets up conflict searches for review by fee earners, correctly identifying the appropriate classification for each entry

Thoroughly understands what is required for client care letters and prepares first drafts of CCLs for fee earners

Prepares bills (including bill narratives if required) and covering letter to client, as required by fee earners

Liaises with credit control and alerting Fee Earners to unpaid bills

Deals with time-recording matters for Fee Earners as required (for example, to record holiday absence).


Skills and Experience:

Qualified to GCSE standard, grade C (or equivalent) at Mathematics and English essential

Previous secretarial experience in a law firm essential

Experience working within a Disputes or Litigation team would be an advantage.


Person Specification:

Has excellent timekeeping and prioritises work effectively

Is flexible, reliable, co-operative and has a professional approach to work

Works as a positive, friendly and helpful team player

Communicates in a positive and constructive manner and always interacts in good faith and demonstrates effective listening

Uses initiative and takes a proactive approach to work by regularly seeking ways to improve secretarial support

Positively supports and promotes change within the Department

Adjusts approach to work as the demands require

Respectfully and confidently puts forward solutions when dealing with competing demands from Fee Earners or others in the Department

Functions effectively under pressure and acts with confidence and composure.

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