A Litigation Associate offers legal advice for individuals involved in lawsuits and represents them in court. They prepare pleading, collect evidence, defend depositions, and manage the client database.

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Litigation Associate Responsibilities

Here are examples of responsibilities from real litigation associate resumes representing typical tasks they are likely to perform in their roles.

  • Lead and assist in out-of-court resolution of actions including settlement negotiations, mediation, and arbitration.
  • Manage all aspects of motion practice and discovery in class and institutional actions involving residential mortgage-backed securities investments.
  • Represent immigrants in deportation proceedings, federal litigation and appeals.
  • Participate in complex commercial litigation group, with matters involving insurance, entertainment, products liability, utilities and investment banking.
  • Research various aspects of family law, civil procedure, and tort law.
  • Ensure business compliance with FDCPA, HIPAA, ADA, and various other regulations.
  • Hire to specifically structure and organize information and documents for client criminal appeals
  • Handle probate court litigation for personal injury settlements and settlements for minors.
  • Second chair mediation concerning ERISA withdrawal liability; result in favorable recovery for client.
  • Represent prominent international artist in contract dispute and successful mediation against former business manager.
  • Defend against claims of wrongful employment termination and discrimination, personal injury and intentional tort.
  • Draft interrogatories, interrogatory responses, document demands, and document responses in federal and state litigation.
  • Represent and counsel corporate entities, individuals and municipalities in connection with employment, securities and commercial matters.
  • Focuse on post-issuance IP litigation, however, also experience with variety of legal topics including racial discrimination and veteran rights.
  • Defend broker-dealers in arbitration cases involving investment suitability and allege misrepresentation claims, including preparation of successful motions for summary judgment.

Litigation Associate Job Description

When it comes to understanding what a litigation associate does, you may be wondering, "should I become a litigation associate?" The data included in this section may help you decide. Compared to other jobs, litigation associates have a growth rate described as "as fast as average" at 6% between the years 2018 - 2028, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. In fact, the number of litigation associate opportunities that are predicted to open up by 2028 is 50,100.

A litigation associate annual salary averages $112,116, which breaks down to $53.9 an hour. However, litigation associates can earn anywhere from upwards of $68,000 to $182,000 a year. This means that the top-earning litigation associates make $144,000 more than the lowest-earning ones.

It's hard work to become a litigation associate, but even the most dedicated employees consider switching careers from time to time. Whether you're interested in a more challenging position or just looking for a fresh start, we've compiled extensive information on becoming a document review attorney, lawyer, law clerk, and general counsel.

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Litigation Associate Skills and Personality Traits

We calculated that 28% of Litigation Associates are proficient in Litigation, Law Firm, and Legal Research. They’re also known for soft skills such as Analytical skills, Interpersonal skills, and Problem-solving skills.

We break down the percentage of Litigation Associates that have these skills listed on their resume here:

  • Litigation, 28%

    Focused on post-issuance IP litigation, however, also experienced with variety of legal topics including racial discrimination and veteran rights.

  • Law Firm, 11%

    Managed a variety of complex global reinsurance litigation/arbitration/mediation cases at a top tier London law firm.

  • Legal Research, 6%

    Performed legal research, prepared litigation documents, and conducted discovery in commercial and employment litigation matters.

  • Commercial Litigation, 5%

    Client-focused business and commercial litigation with an emphasis in intellectual property matters and federal court practice in all districts in Texas.

  • Discovery Motions, 3%

    Experienced in taking and defending depositions, preparing and opposing affirmative discovery motions, and managing/organizing large-scale document review projects.

  • Insurance Coverage, 3%

    Obtained successful outcomes in retaliatory wrongful discharge, product liability, insurance coverage disputes, commercial contract disputes and collections.

Choose From 10+ Customizable Litigation Associate Resume templates

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Some of the skills we found on litigation associate resumes included "litigation," "law firm," and "legal research." We have detailed the most important litigation associate responsibilities below.

  • Arguably the most important personality trait for a litigation associate to have happens to be analytical skills. An example from a resume said this about the skill, "lawyers help their clients resolve problems and issues" Additionally, other resumes have pointed out that litigation associates can use analytical skills to "report to and collaborate with insurance carrier, third party administrator and/or client regarding litigation strategy and liability analysis. "
  • Another commonly found skill for being able to perform litigation associate duties is the following: interpersonal skills. According to a litigation associate resume, "lawyers must win the respect and confidence of their clients by building a trusting relationship so that clients feel comfortable enough to share personal information related to their case." Check out this example of how litigation associates use interpersonal skills: "demonstrated effective interpersonal skills through working closely with office of general counsel and administrative appeals judges. "
  • Problem-solving skills is also an important skill for litigation associates to have. This example of how litigation associates use this skill comes from a litigation associate resume, "lawyers must separate their emotions and prejudice from their clients’ problems and objectively evaluate the relevant applicable information" Read this excerpt from a resume to understand how vital it is to their everyday roles and responsibilities, "practiced general commercial litigation in the firm's dispute resolution group. "
  • A thorough review of lots of resumes revealed to us that "research skills" is important to completing litigation associate responsibilities. This resume example shows just one way litigation associates use this skill: "lawyers need to be able to find those laws and regulations which apply to a specific matter, in order to provide the appropriate legal advice for their clients." Here's an example of how this skill is used from a resume that represents typical litigation associate tasks: "provided expert research and consulting in litigation involving developer compliance with federal clean water act and federally regulated wetlands and waterways. "
  • As part of the litigation associate description, you might find that one of the skills that might be helpful to the job is "speaking skills." A litigation associate resume included this snippet: "lawyers must be able to clearly present and explain their case to arbitrators, mediators, opposing parties, judges, or juries, because they are speaking on behalf of their clients." This skill could be useful in this scenario: "represented condominium and homeowners associations throughout georgia to provide guidance on litigation issues, collection strategies, and collections practices. "
  • While "writing skills" is listed last on this skills list, don't underestimate its importance to litigation associate responsibilities. The skill is described by this resume snippet, "lawyers need to be precise and specific when preparing documents, such as wills, trusts, and powers of attorney." Here is an example of how this skill is used, "perform legal research and writing in matters involving commercial litigation. "
  • See the full list of litigation associate skills.

    After discovering the most helpful skills, we moved onto what kind of education might be helpful in becoming a litigation associate. We found that 39.9% of litigation associates have graduated with a bachelor's degree and 3.5% of people in this position have earned their master's degrees. While most litigation associates have a college degree, you may find it's also true that generally it's impossible to be successful in this career with only a high school degree. In fact, our research shows that one out of every ten litigation associates were not college graduates.

    Those litigation associates who do attend college, typically earn either law degrees or political science degrees. Less commonly earned degrees for litigation associates include history degrees or legal research and advanced professional studies degrees.

    Once you've obtained the level of education you're comfortable with, you might start applying to companies to become a litigation associate. We've found that most litigation associate resumes include experience from DLA Piper, Nelson Mullins Riley & Scarborough, and Wilson Elser Moskowitz Edelman & Dicker Llp. Of recent, DLA Piper had 39 positions open for litigation associates. Meanwhile, there are 26 job openings at Nelson Mullins Riley & Scarborough and 20 at Wilson Elser Moskowitz Edelman & Dicker Llp.

    If you're interested in companies where litigation associates make the most money, you'll want to apply for positions at Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner, Nelson Mullins Riley & Scarborough, and Seyfarth Shaw. We found that at Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner, the average litigation associate salary is $225,348. Whereas at Nelson Mullins Riley & Scarborough, litigation associates earn roughly $223,787. And at Seyfarth Shaw, they make an average salary of $206,747.

    View more details on litigation associate salaries across the United States.

    Some other companies you might be interested in as a litigation associate include United States Department of Justice, Lewis Inc, and City of New York. These three companies were found to hire the most litigation associates from the top 100 U.S. educational institutions.

    The three companies that hire the most prestigious litigation associates are:

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    What Document Review Attorneys Do

    A Document Review Attorney reviews various types of legal documents, such as contract and employment law, intellectual property, and commercial litigation, to identify any areas of risk or information that may need correction.

    In this section, we compare the average litigation associate annual salary with that of a document review attorney. Typically, document review attorneys earn a $30,935 lower salary than litigation associates earn annually.

    Even though litigation associates and document review attorneys have vast differences in their careers, a few of the skills required to do both jobs are similar. For example, both careers require litigation, law firm, and commercial litigation in the day-to-day roles.

    There are some key differences in responsibilities as well. For example, a litigation associate responsibilities require skills like "legal research," "discovery motions," "insurance coverage," and "pre-trial motions." Meanwhile a typical document review attorney has skills in areas such as "e-discovery software," "qc," "attorney-client privilege," and "privilege logs." This difference in skills reveals how truly different these two careers really are.

    Document review attorneys tend to make the most money in the professional industry by averaging a salary of $99,404. In contrast, litigation associates make the biggest average salary of $151,203 in the professional industry.

    Document review attorneys tend to reach similar levels of education than litigation associates. In fact, document review attorneys are 2.6% more likely to graduate with a Master's Degree and 4.3% more likely to have a Doctoral Degree.

    What Are The Duties Of a Lawyer?

    A lawyer is a legal practitioner who specializes in understanding and interpreting laws and other legal matters. Their responsibilities revolve around providing legal counseling and advice, representing clients in different kinds of court proceedings, conducting research, collecting evidence, and coordinating with various experts. A lawyer must also manage and oversee the performance of assistants, paralegals, and other team members. Furthermore, there are instances when a lawyer must draft or manage documents such as contracts, trusts, deeds, and wills, assisting clients as needed.

    The next role we're going to look at is the lawyer profession. Typically, this position earns a higher pay. In fact, they earn a $3,692 higher salary than litigation associates per year.

    Not everything about these jobs is different. Take their skills, for example. Litigation associates and lawyers both include similar skills like "litigation," "law firm," and "legal research" on their resumes.

    In addition to the difference in salary, there are some other key differences that are worth noting. For example, litigation associate responsibilities are more likely to require skills like "discovery motions," "insurance coverage," "pre-trial motions," and "mediation." Meanwhile, a lawyer might be skilled in areas such as "real estate," "civil law," "legal advice," and "juris." These differences highlight just how different the day-to-day in each role looks.

    In general, lawyers study at higher levels of education than litigation associates. They're 11.1% more likely to obtain a Master's Degree while being 4.3% less likely to earn a Doctoral Degree.

    How a Law Clerk Compares

    Law clerks are employees in a legal firm who handle clerical tasks for the office. They handle the office's official phone lines, answering incoming calls, and making outgoing calls. They also field office correspondence, often receiving incoming mail and distributing them to their addressees. They manage office documents and ensure that they are correctly filed and labeled in their respective storage bins. Law clerks help make office life more comfortable because they make sure that the office is running well. They also manage appointments and office calendars.

    The third profession we take a look at is law clerk. On an average scale, these workers bring in lower salaries than litigation associates. In fact, they make a $56,200 lower salary per year.

    Using litigation associates and law clerks resumes, we found that both professions have similar skills such as "litigation," "law firm," and "legal research," but the other skills required are very different.

    There are many key differences between these two careers as shown by resumes from each profession. Some of those differences include the skills required to complete responsibilities within each role. As an example of this, a litigation associate is likely to be skilled in "discovery motions," "insurance coverage," "mediation," and "securities," while a typical law clerk is skilled in "legal memos," "summary judgment," "demand letters," and "client interviews."

    Law clerks make a very good living in the professional industry with an average annual salary of $98,674. Whereas litigation associates are paid the highest salary in the professional industry with the average being $151,203.

    When it comes to education, law clerks tend to earn similar education levels than litigation associates. In fact, they're 2.0% more likely to earn a Master's Degree, and 27.0% more likely to graduate with a Doctoral Degree.

    Description Of a General Counsel

    A general counsel, also called a chief legal officer, is the chief lawyer in the legal department of an organization. The counsel represents an enterprise for any pending legal matters. They work proactively to lessen possible problems associated with legalities and potential risks. They have to monitor practices and the people within the law firm for misconduct. They also perform dominant roles in regulation, ethics, public affairs, and legislation. It is common for them to serve as the public spokesperson of the company during the publicity of legal matters.

    Now, we'll look at general counsels, who generally average a higher pay when compared to litigation associates annual salary. In fact, the difference is about $13,132 per year.

    While both litigation associates and general counsels complete day-to-day tasks using similar skills like litigation, law firm, and legal research, the two careers also vary in other skills.

    While some skills are shared by these professions, there are some differences to note. "discovery motions," "insurance coverage," "pre-trial motions," and "federal courts" are skills that have shown up on litigation associates resumes. Additionally, general counsel uses skills like legal advice, juris, risk management, and ethics on their resumes.

    Now, let's take a closer look at the financials in each career. The finance industry tends to pay more for general counsels with an average of $135,018. While the highest litigation associate annual salary comes from the professional industry.

    General counsels reach similar levels of education when compared to litigation associates. The difference is that they're 4.3% more likely to earn a Master's Degree more, and 12.6% less likely to graduate with a Doctoral Degree.