• Research Attorney

    Location US-MA-Boston
    Superior Court Department
    Posting Date
    Closing Date
    09/25/2018 11:59 PM EST
    USD $70,747.42/Yr.

    This posting is for two Research Attorney positions in one or more of the following locations: Brockton, Fall River, Springfield, and/or Worcester.


    Please read all instructions carefully before starting the Trial Court online application process. Applications that do not comply with instructions may be screened out. In particular:


    * Profiles. Applicants will need to create a Profile as the first step of the online application process. Applicants who already have a Profile from a previous application should log in using their existing user name and password, rather than creating multiple profiles. During the Profile stage, applicants will be able to upload their resume, enter cover letter text, enter references, and upload letters of recommendation.


    * Resumes. Resumes must be uploaded with the online application. Specifically, when creating your Profile, choose "Create with Resume" and follow the instructions to upload your resume. Resumes should *not* include a list of references (see below).


    * Cover letter. Formal cover letters are not required. Instead, applicants may copy and paste the body of their cover letter, addressed to the "Justices of the Superior Court", where indicated in the online application.


    * References. Applicants must enter the names and full contact information of their references where indicated in the online application. Unless and until we reach out to references, they should not contact the Superior Court directly in support of an applicant.


    * Letters of Recommendation. Letters of recommendation should be addressed to the Justices of the Superior Court, Suffolk Superior Courthouse, 3 Pemberton Square, 13th Floor, Boston, MA 02108. Preferably, applicants should contact references and obtain letters of recommendation before starting the online application process, and then upload the letters of recommendation where indicated in the online application. Alternatively, recommenders may submit letters directly to the Trial Court by email to MATrialCourtJobs@jud.state.ma.us. Please do not submit (or have recommenders submit) letters of recommendation by any other means than those described here.


    * Updating Profiles. Applicants have the ability to update their Profiles, including their resume, cover letter, references and letters of recommendation. In particular, applicants who are unable to submit references or letters of recommendation with their initial application can and should still do so, by updating their Profiles. Any updates must be made before the application deadline.


    * Employment Application. After completing the Profile, applicants must complete the Employment application. Answer every question fully and accurately. Do not use "see resume" or similar response.


    * Additional Materials. Applicants who pass the initial screenings will be asked to provide additional materials, including a statement of interest, writing sample, and official law school transcripts. Applicants should be prepared to submit these materials if and when we request them (but not before).


    * Clerkship Experience. Please note that judicial clerkship experience (as opposed to judicial internships) is defined as full-time post-graduate employment as a law clerk for a court or judge.


    Questions may be directed to Attorney Romeo G. Camba, Manager of Legal Research Services, at romeo.camba@jud.state.ma.us. Due to anticipated volume, however, please do not contact us to ask about the status of individual applications. No telephone inquiries please.




    The Trial Court is committed to:


    -the fair and impartial administration of justice;
    -protection of constitutional and statutory rights and liberties;
    -equal access to justice for all in a safe and dignified environment;
    -efficient, effective and accountable resolution of disputes;
    -prompt and courteous service to the public by committed and dedicated professionals utilizing best practices in a manner that inspires public trust and confidence.


    The Superior Court, the trial court of general jurisdiction for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, is committed to delivering high quality justice in a timely and fair manner in accordance with the rule of law.






    The Research Attorney is a professional position within the Superior Court. This position involves analyzing and researching legal issues and questions for the Justices of the Superior Court and the Administrative Office, and preparing legal memoranda, drafting judicial decisions and other documents. An employee is hired at the Research Attorney I level and is eligible for reclassification to the Research Attorney II level upon meeting the requirements of that level.  The position title reverts to the entry level Research Attorney I position title when there is a vacancy.




    Research Attorney I: This is the entry level position title within this series.  An employee is expected to perform the full range of legal duties of this position and to train for the next higher level.


    Research Attorney II: This is the second level position title within this series.  An employee is expected to perform more complex and varied legal duties which require more knowledge of case law and court policies and procedures.




    Work is performed under the general direction of the Departmental Chief Justice, the Associate Justices, and the Manager of Legal Research Services and is evaluated for professional competence and conformity to policy.


    Research Attorney I Duties:


    Researches legal issues and questions and assists in the writing of draft decisions and legal memoranda on civil, criminal, and administrative matters, particularly in more complex cases such as in the Business Litigation Session;


    Delivers all legal documents and related work product in a timely and high quality fashion, meeting deadlines and demonstrating continuous improvement;  


    May assist in the training, administration, and oversight of law clerks and interns;


    Confers with and advises judges and court officials on legal issues;


    Performs specialized legal and administrative functions;


    Performs special projects as assigned; and


    Performs related duties as required.


    Research Attorney II Duties:


    Regularly researches complex or novel issues or arguments of law and prepares legal memoranda;


    Produces substantially more complex high quality work products specifically assigned to experienced research attorneys;


    Regularly assists in the training, administration, and oversight of law clerks and interns;


    Assists Superior Court Committee members in preparing materials for meetings, judicial conferences, and reports;


    Develops specialization skills in specific legal and administrative functions;


    Leads special projects as assigned; and


    Performs all of the duties of the lower level title as required.



    All applicants must be able, through the interview process, to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the following areas:


    Ethics and Values

    Communicates and demonstrates the ethics and values of the Superior Court Department and the Trial Court.


    Understands, upholds, and communicates the Trial Court and Superior Court 


    Applied Knowledge

    Understanding of legal research, preparing legal memoranda and other documents, contributing to the development and implementation of court rules and policies.

    Problem Solving

    Accurately identifies and addresses legal issues within the department and initiates corrective action.

    Continuous Learning

    Demonstrates a commitment to continuously improve himself or herself through professional development.

    Commitment to Diversity

    Promotes an environment of diversity through understanding, respect, and positive communication with persons of varied racial, ethnic, economic, and cultural backgrounds.

    Customer Service

    Fosters a departmental environment emphasizing conduct that is courteous and professional toward both Trial Court employees and the public.


    Works with others cooperatively, and promotes teamwork, contributing to a work environment that focuses on shared departmental goals.


    These are the minimum requirements necessary to apply for the position of Research Attorney I:


    Research Attorney I Requirements:


    Graduation from an accredited law school and membership in the Massachusetts Bar or actively applying;


    Excellent writing, communication, and legal research skills;


    Ability to produce high quality work product while meeting deadlines and demonstrating a history of continuous improvement;


    Knowledge of and ability to use computer software such as MS Office, including word processing, spreadsheets, data bases, and PowerPoint;


    Preferred: 2 years of post-law school experience in the litigation context as of September 2019. Prior judicial clerkship experience, particularly as a Massachusetts Superior Court Law Clerk;


    Other knowledge, skills, and abilities:


    Ability to assist in the training, administration, and oversight of law clerks and interns;


    Knowledge of the Massachusetts judicial system and state law;


    Knowledge of applicable court jurisdiction and court procedures;


    Knowledge of trial, hearing and administrative procedures;


    Ability to analyze legal issues and identify relevant case opinions and court policies;


    Ability to prepare legal memoranda and other documents;


    Ability to work independently and to establish work priorities;


    Ability to deal effectively with attorneys, court officials, justices and the general public;


    Ability to handle sensitive matters on a confidential basis;


    Ability to maintain complex and accurate court records; and


    Ability to travel to Superior Court Courthouses throughout the Commonwealth.


    Research Attorney II Requirements:


    A minimum of four years of experience as a Research Attorney I;


    Considerable knowledge of the Massachusetts judicial system and court policies and practices;


    Demonstrated ability to analyze and research complex legal issues;


    Demonstrated ability to produce substantially more complex high quality work products specifically assigned to experienced research attorneys;


    Ability to demonstrate specialization in specific legal and administrative functions;


    Exhibits initiative and the effective leadership on special projects;


    Demonstrated ability to assist in the training, administration, and oversight of law clerks, and interns;


    Demonstrated ability to analyze administrative concerns and to develop feasible solutions;


    Demonstrated ability to perform responsibilities with minimal supervision;


    Demonstrated ability to develop and maintain professional working relationships with judges and court officials;


    Ability to travel to Superior Court Courthouses throughout the Commonwealth;


    Performs related work as required.   





    Applicants must apply by completing a Trial Court online application by clicking "Apply for this job online" button at the top of this page. 


    If you are not viewing this online, go to the Judicial Branch Employment page at https://careers-trialcourtsofmass.icims.com/jobs  and search for this job.


    PLEASE NOTE:  Paper, faxed or emailed applications or resumes are not accepted for any Trial Court position.                        




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