A law clerk is also called a judicial clerk or a legal assistant. This individual provides assistance to the judge in researching about legal issues before the court, making legal decisions, and also in writing opinions. A recent graduate of law school and usually top of their class, law clerks then become open to more fulfilling career opportunities in the long run.
Although the job position involves the word clerk, it doesn’t actually mean performing clerical duties. There are law clerk positions available in the federal and state courts in levels of the trial and appellate courts. Law clerks are vital in the sense that they keep the courts and the legal processes moving smoothly. There is so much to do for attorneys and judges that without a law clerk, quality work and quality decisions are rarely possible. For example, case law is formed more easily with the help of the influence and work that law clerks do.
Law clerks are involved with the litigation process if they choose to work under the trial court level. They help the judge in courtroom proceedings, manage exhibits submitted for evidence and interact with the chambers staff, court personnel, litigant as well as the public. They also review briefs submitted by parties and draft legal documents like trial briefs.
Law clerks under the appellate law research and analyze complex legal issues in criminal and civil appeals. They educate the judge and other legal staff about facts and issues of the case prior to oral argument and help in judicial proceedings.