|Court clerks process legal documents and perform other court related functions.|
Court clerks schedule court cases, notify participants of trial details, and prepare post, file, and route documents and case folders. Clerks review submitted court documents to make sure the described procedures are accurate, and they must correct any listed errors on documents.
Clerks verify case folders prior to each trial and make sure important records and documents are placed in each folder. If there are any missing documents, clerks must request copies. Clerks retrieve information for judges, collect information from attorneys and witnesses, and supply the district attorney with information. Clerks prepare forms needed by the judge for trials.
Clerks administer oaths to witnesses and record the minutes of a trial. After a trial has completed, they record witness testimonies, case results, court orders, and fines issued by the court. They also collect and record court fees or fines.
Clerks file public records such as mortgages, marriage licenses, and deeds.
Education and Training Requirements
Individuals pursuing a career as a court clerk must at minimum possess high school diplomas or a GED, although two years of college or business school may be required for some positions. Bachelor's degrees are preferred by most courts, and many federal court clerks have earned a master's degree or law degree. Court clerks must also be skilled in bookkeeping, word processing, business and personnel management, budgeting, and accounting.
Court clerks usually work in an office setting and are often required to stand or sit for long periods of time performing copying, filing and administrative work. Court clerks generally work a 5-day, 40-hour week. Their schedules may vary according to state or federal laws, jurisdictional rules and judge orders or orders from others with the power to regulate work hours.
Criminal Justice Careers
Learn More About the Most Popular Criminal Justice Careers by Specialty
Featured Criminal Justice Articles
Explore Articles on Hot Topics in the Field of Criminal Justice
Forensic researchers in Tucson, Arizona have developed a revolutionary method that could allow scientists to predict what a person might look like using only their DNA. Scientists at the University of Arizona conducted a research project measuring the following characteristics of nearly 1,000 individuals: eye color, skin, and hair.Read more
For the first time in over a generation, the question of whether the death penalty deters murders has captured the attention of scholars, sparking an intense new debate. About 12 current reports indicate each time a convicted murderer is executed, between 3-18 homicides do not occur.Read more
Are bounty hunters legitimate law enforcement professional? There has been increasing controversy in the United States over bounty hunters, with concern voiced over the lack of control that a state has over their behavior. Court jurisdictions have permitted bounty hunters broad authority to locate and detain individuals fleeing to evade the legal process.Read more