Litigation Legal Assistant II
Kirkland & Ellis LLP - Chicago, IL

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About Kirkland & Ellis

Kirkland & Ellis LLP is a preeminent, full-service law firm with approximately 1,400 attorneys in Chicago, Hong Kong, London, Los Angeles, Munich, New York, Palo Alto, San Francisco, Shanghai and Washington, D.C. Our practice consists of sophisticated corporate transactions and litigation matters including antitrust and competition, intellectual property, restructuring, real estate, tax, benefits and estate planning, white collar criminal defense and securities enforcement, regulatory, environmental, energy, commodities, communications, securities, creditors' rights, private equity and venture capital. Our clients range from Fortune 100 companies to medium and small corporations, financial institutions and leveraged buyout and venture capital firms.

Qualifications & Requirements

The ideal candidate will possess 10+ years of experience that focuses on complex litigation cases, including managing large discovery, creating and managing databases and imaging systems, supervising teams, preparing for trial, and managing trial support. Must have high-level experience with a range of litigation support applications. Should also have experience managing out-of-town trial offices for cases that have gone to verdict. Demonstrated history of proposing and implementing process improvements is a plus. Additional qualifications include excellent analytical and organizational abilities, solid communication and management skills, creativity and initiative. Bachelor’s degree preferred, but not required. Flexibility to accommodate for travel and overtime is required.

Essential Job Functions

The legal assistants are responsible for managing the files (“case record”) including a complete set of the correspondence, memos, pleadings, and client documents in a matter. They determine the information management needs of the matter, and develop and implement an effective system to manage and share documents and information among all those working on the matter.
They help monitor deadlines by creating and maintaining calendars of key dates.

Typically one Litigation Legal Assistant is assigned to most litigation cases, particularly those that are large, complex or multi-party actions. The legal assistant works with all of the attorneys on the matter from the beginning through trial or arbitration, managing the flow of information and ensuring adherence to best practices. Successful legal assistants develop solid working relationships with senior partners and clients. They also continually find new and better ways of doing things, improving processes through the application of new technology.

The legal assistants work in all phases of the discovery process, from collection of documents from the client to the production of documents to other parties. This means working with the client and their in-house legal staff to collect relevant electronic and paper documents and data, as well as assisting at client interviews and on-site document reviews. Once documents and data have been collected, the legal assistants design and manage the document review process to help identify and track potentially responsive, confidential and privileged materials.

Legal assistants help compile information necessary to respond to interrogatories, document requests and requests for admission served on their clients. They also organize and review documents received from other parties.

In order to manage the large volume of documents and information during the discovery phase of litigation, legal assistants set up databases, either on-line or in-house, obtaining assistance and support as necessary from Litigation Support and from outside vendors.

Legal assistants help attorneys prepare for depositions by arranging the preparation of witness files, compiling and organizing exhibits, and arranging the technical logistics with court reporting agencies. For expert depositions, they research prior testimony and publications, and track materials sent to the experts. Legal assistants manage deposition transcripts and exhibits, and maintain searchable computer databases of testimony.

Legal assistants work with the attorneys during the briefing process by checking the legal and fact cites, and ensuring accuracy and proper formatting style. They research local rules, and obtain information about the venue and the judge (e.g. judge’s bio, prior decisions and opinions) They are often responsible for assembling and organizing the exhibits and supporting documents as well as arranging for filing with the court and serving on all parties. This typically involves close coordination with local counsel.

In preparation for trials or hearings, the legal assistants work with the attorneys, experts, and client to identify and compile potential trial exhibits, generate trial exhibit lists, and track objections to both sides exhibits. They prepare deposition designations, and compile Pretrial Orders and other submissions. They coordinate the scheduling of witnesses for preparation and testimony. They work with trial consultants on graphics, videos and other demonstratives, as well as with other professionals involved in the trial. They develop a good working relationship with the Court Clerk, and coordinate logistics with courthouse personnel. They set up and manage off-site trial offices, arranging for all office support and logistics.

At trial, the legal assistant team prepares materials for each day’s examinations, tracks the use and admission of exhibits, tracks and reviews witness testimony, and delivers and picks up all materials at the courtroom each day. They assist in the courtroom, anticipating attorneys needs.

How to Apply

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Equal Employment Opportunity

All employment decisions, including the recruiting, hiring, placement, training availability, promotion, compensation, evaluation, disciplinary actions, and termination of employment (if necessary) are made without regard to the employee’s race, color, creed, religion, sex, pregnancy or childbirth, personal appearance, family responsibilities, sexual orientation or preference, gender identity, political affiliation, source of income, place of residence, national or ethnic origin, ancestry, age, marital status, military veteran status, unfavorable discharge from military service, physical or mental disability, or on any other basis prohibited by applicable law.

Closing Statement

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Kirkland & Ellis LLP is a law firm with approximately 1,600 lawyers representing global clients in complex litigation and dispute...