Paralegal - Trusts & Estates Practice Group

JOB SUMMARY:

  • Communicates effectively with clients, potential clients, internal and external attorneys and office personnel, court personnel, financial institutions, insurance companies, accountants, government agencies, etc. Reviews and analyzes Wills, Trust Agreements, financial statements and data, tax returns.
  • Prepares court forms for estate and trust administration, guardianships, etc. Prepares correspondence, accountings, estate and income tax returns, asset transfer documents.

ESSENTIAL DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES:

  • Works independently and makes appropriate decisions within ethical legal parameters set by the firm to perform functions of a paralegal; understands disciplinary rules and ethical boundaries relative to the unauthorized practice of law.
  • Maintains a heavy caseload in an effective manner and assumes full responsibility of moving a file or case to conclusion with minimal supervision of the responsible attorney.
  • Monitors caseload, meets deadlines, and communicates effectively with attorneys regarding the file and any issues that may arise.
  • Identifies problems and recommends appropriate solutions.
  • Plan and organizes work, establishing priorities and delegating as necessary.
  • Reviews and interprets estate planning documents, i.e. Wills, Trusts, etc., to effectively determine the course of action required to administer estates and trusts.
  • Demonstrates ability to intake client information and conducts thorough investigation to gather complete information, documentation and facts necessary to complete the administration of estates and trusts.
  • Communicates effectively with court personnel, financial institutions, insurance companies, accountants, debt collectors and government agencies to ensure that all matters of decedent's estate are accurately and properly dealt with.
  • Accurately prepares Court documents according to the requirements of Court.
  • Performs legal research.
  • Prepares estate, individual income and fiduciary income tax returns taking into account each individual's income tax circumstances in a manner that minimizes the client's tax liability.
  • Prepares and supervises Medicaid applications for clients applying for nursing home and community Medicaid coverage to include interaction with the Department of Social Services, client conferences, communications with financial institutions and insurance companies to obtain financial records for lookback period, calculation of estimated NAMI and spousal contributions, calculation of penalty period for transfer of assets, gift/note planning, and any other duties required to qualify client for Medicaid coverage.
  • Prepares documents for Guardianship proceedings to include guardianship appointments and termination, prepares and files Guardianship Annual Reports as required to be filed with the Court.
  • Work with and assist with training new associates in the area of estate and trust administration.

QUALIFICATIONS, KNOWLEDGE, and SKILLS:

  • Knowledge of legal principles and practices acquired through formal paralegal training.
  • Ability to read and interpret statutes and case law.
  • Organize, prioritize and complete numerous tasks under strict time constraints.
  • Ability to concentrate and pay close attention to detail.
  • Ability to multitask.
  • Must possess a strong mathematical background to perform complex computations and have knowledge of detailed accounting principles.
  • Must possess excellent verbal and writing skills.
  • Interpersonal skills necessary to communicate effectively with a diverse group of clients and attorneys and provide information with sensitivity, courtesy and tact.
  • Ability to learn and utilize a variety of software programs.
  • Ability to work independently and take ownership of files from commencement to conclusion.
  • Extensive knowledge of estate planning, trusts and estates law.
  • General knowledge of real estate law, social services law, litigation and tax law.
  • Must be resourceful to obtain pertinent information.
  • Ability to work in a multi-state court environment.

EDUCATION and/or EXPERIENCE:

  • High School degree required; AAS degree preferred.
  • Minimum of five years' experience in practice.

CERTIFICATES, LICENCES, REGISTRATIONS:

  • Paralegal certification preferred
  • Notary Public license preferred