Patent Legal Secretary (West Coast)
McKenna Long & Aldridge LLP - San Diego, CA

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Assists and supports attorneys and other legal personnel by providing administrative and clerical assistance in the performance of the following duties.


  • Prepare new applications including Provisional, Non-Provisional, Divisional and Continuation applications, ensuring final deadlines are met and all papers are properly prepared and filed in a timely manner with the USPTO.
  • Prepare Amendments, Notice of Appeals, Responses to Restriction Requirement, Request for Continued Examination (RCE), Appeal Briefs and other necessary filings to the USPTO.
  • Maintain a manual docket on a daily basis making sure all filings are completed and filed in a timely manner via hand-delivery or EFS (Electronic Filing System) with the USPTO.
  • Prepare correspondence and responses for mailing, faxing, courier, FEDEX, including the certificate of mailing, copy and filing of documents as per client instructions and/or protocol.
  • Provides information to IP Docketing Department for items filed with and received from USPTO.
  • Order and obtain copies of patent file histories.
  • Ensures correct changes are made in the file, docketing system, client information database and that all amendments are entered to the appropriate documents.
  • Performs research as requested using Private PAIR, TARR and other reference sources. Obtain copies of documents as requested.
  • Ensures time entry is input correctly into the Elite system in a timely manner as directed.

  • Qualifications and Working Environment:

    Supervisory Responsibilities

    No supervisory responsibilities.

    Firm Relationships

    Position requires regular contact with all levels of employees

    Job Standards

    To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions .


    High school diploma or GED required. Bachelor’s degree or some college preferred.


    Minimum of one to two years related experience and/or training; or equivalent combination of education and experience.

    Skills and Abilities

    - Exceptional verbal and written communication and language skills

    - Proactive and efficient in managing dockets, correspondence and patent filings

    - Current knowledge of E-filing

    - Current knowledge of PTO rules and procedures

    - Ability to multi-task and shift priorities successfully

    - Excellent organizational abilities

    - Ability to meet deadlines and effectively juggle multiple priorities

    - Strong service orientation

    - Ability to be proactive, take initiative, and to use both good judgment and discretion when dealing with sensitive or confidential matters

    Hardware / Software

    Advanced proficiency in Microsoft Office software, including Word, Outlook, Excel and PowerPoint applications

    Success Factors

    Personal characteristics that contribute to success in this position are as follows: strong work ethic and personal integrity; high degree of attention to detail; ability to effectively work in a team environment; ability to maintain confidential information.

    Physical Environment and Working Conditions

    The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

    - Normal office environment with little exposure to excessive noise, dust, temperature and the like.

    - Position requires frequent sitting and some reaching, kneeling and walking.

    - While performing the duties of this job, the employee is frequently required to walk; sit; use hands to finger, handle, or feel; reach with hands and arms and talk or hear.

    - The employee is occasionally required to stand and stoop, kneel, crouch, or crawl. The employee must frequently lift and/or move up to 10 pounds and occasionally lift and/or move up to 25 pounds.

    The above is intended to describe the general content of and requirements for the performance of this job. It is not to be construed as an exhaustive statement of essential functions, responsibilities or requirements.

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