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Law Office Confidentiality: A Guide for Students Pursuing Legal Office Administrator Careers

April 27, 2016

become a legal office administrator

Confidentiality is the foundation of the law office/client relationship, since lawyers can only provide effective representation when there is full and open communication. When clients visit a law office, it’s of utmost importance that they feel secure that all information they provide to lawyers and any legal staff will be held secret and confidential, no matter what the nature of their case may be.

If you’re planning to pursue a career as a legal office administrator, you’ll be playing an important role in maintaining confidentiality in the workplace no matter which type of law office you choose to work in. Read on to find out how you can do your part to help protect client information, so they can continue to get the confidential legal representation they need.

Greeting Clients Professionally Once You Become a Legal Office Administrator

Many graduates with legal training go on to work at the front desks of law firms during their legal office administrator careers. Because they are the first person clients see when they enter the law office, it’s important for these professionals to greet clients kindly and professionally.

When greeting clients, maintaining confidentiality is important. You’ll want to remain friendly, but never ask about or discuss details of a client’s case. The details of their visits are between them and their lawyer, so you’ll never want to say things like “I assume you’re here to discuss ____?” as this could serve as a breach of trust in the attorney/client relationship.

Creating and Filing Documents with Confidentiality After Legal Office Administration Courses

Once you become a legal office administrator, you’ll help lawyers by creating and filing important documents that pertain to different cases. Since legal documents contain sensitive information, it’s important that they be handled with care.

When working with legal documents, your task management skills will play a key role in maintaining client confidentiality. Make sure that when you type up, print, and file away a document, that you complete each task before moving on to your next responsibility. By remaining focused, you’ll reduce the risk of forgetting a document in the photocopier where anyone can walk by and grab it, accidentally sending emails to the wrong recipients, or filing documents in the wrong folders or cabinets.

Share Files Securely Once you Become a Legal Office Administrator

Computers have transformed the way files are created, stored, and shared in the legal office environment. Some law offices have even gotten rid of filing cabinets and switched to computers or data storage services instead. If you work for a practice that stores data electronically, you’ll want to make sure that these documents are properly protected. Not only do these documents contain important case information, but they also contain important client information such as their addresses and social security numbers—which you wouldn’t want falling into the wrong hands.

legal office administrator careers

Many law offices use computers instead of paper filing systems

In order to help keep these files safe, you’ll want to first make sure that your office internet connection is protected with a firewall to help block out anyone who’s unauthorized from gaining access. If your office uses a remote storage service, make sure that it’s a reliable source, and that everything that gets uploaded is password protected.

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