Rewarding Jobs in The U.S. Federal Court
Lengthy Court Career
For thirteen years, I worked at the United States District Court, Eastern District of Michigan. I held four different positions: Records Clerk, Intake Clerk, Generalist, and Magistrate Courtroom Deputy Clerk. I worked for the Clerk of the Court, who is the Keeper of the Record. When documents are filed in Federal Court, an official record is created with the Clerk of the Court. Working for the Federal Judiciary allowed me a chance to earn a great income and enjoy exciting opportunities.
The last job I had with the United Stated District Court, was a Magistrate Courtroom Deputy Clerk. The most fascinating aspect of the Courtroom Deputy Clerk job was called Criminal Duty Call. I will share that later.
In this Hub I will share some inside matters of the Federal Court. The United States District Court was an exciting place to work -- never a dull moment. By the way, I found my job through the Placement and Cooperative Education Department where I was attending college; now known as Davenport University. Enjoy!
Job Sharing Worked Out Good After Having Children
After I had children, the commute became cumbersome, and the Court allowed me to work part-time (job-sharing). Job-sharing is a term that means you share a full-time job with one other individual; I shared mine with Linda. I worked every other day – Monday, Wednesday and Friday one week; and Tuesday, Thursday the next week.
One day, I finally resigned, never to return again because home responsibilities were consuming more of my time. My husband and I felt that we would be better off financially if I stayed home.
Interesting Jobs I Worked in the US Federal Court
- Records Clerk Responsibilities. I enjoyed this job and had lots of fun helping the public. I had the responsibility of filling request from the public for copies of pleadings (official court documents); pulling files for review; sorting and placing pleadings in file jackets; sorting and delivering mail to court chambers. There was a team of six of us, and our goal each day was to have all documents files and neatly put away in their proper files. We provided excellent customer service to all who needed our service.
- Intake Clerk Responsibilities. The Intake Clerk is what I call the “front line” individuals. I would be the first person the public would talk to at the Clerk’s Office. My responsibilities would be to open a new case. We accepted payment of many sorts at the Intake Window, including bond money that was posted for defendants in criminal matters. I used the computer to open new cases; which generated the number for the new cases. I time-stamped all court pleadings that were filed with the court; and answered the phone to direct the public where they needed to go. Every day lots of people came to the Court - Couriers, and Attorneys.
- Generalist Clerk Responsibilities. The Generalist position entailed working as a fill-in wherever needed in the Clerk/Court. My assignment would be given upon arrival at work. I was trained to work any job in the Court that needed temporary help. I worked for several of the Judges Courtroom Deputy’s; Records; Intake and Docket Departments and for Magistrate Clerks that were absent or on leave. I enjoyed the variety, but I had no home of my own.
- Magistrate Courtroom Clerk. This was the last position I held in the US Federal Court. I worked with a Magistrate who only worked Criminal Duty Call. I held this position for one year; and went to work every six weeks for one full week. Every day for a week, I was responsible to coordinate the Call with the appropriate court personnel. I opened Court; swore defendants and witnesses; recorded the court hearings on tape recorder; processes bond paperwork for arraignments; scheduled court hearing dates – preliminary hearings, pre-trials and next court appearances. I also processed the official documents for Arrest Warrants; Bench Warrants and Subpoenas that Federal Agents would bring to the Magistrate. Occasionally, we would have to stay late nights for arrest that were made and an immediate hearing was required. The pay was significant enough that it was well worth my time to go downtown.
Requirements – To work in the Federal Court, you have to be professional, good with the public, efficient, accurate, computer literate, quickly meet deadlines, follow procedures and policies, work with people; maintain confidentiality and have a high regard for the Judiciary. Of utmost importance, you must have a clean record because your background will be checked.
Famous Trial – John Z. Delorean Trial - I Was Surprised
I was chosen to be the Runner for this trial. Every day for several months, I opened court by stating, “All rise, the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan is now in session, the Honorable Julian Abele Cook, Jr. presiding.” Then Judge Cook would say, “You may be seated.” I never will forget on the day of the verdict, John Delorean’s attorney, prominent Howard Weitzman, surprisingly kissed me on the cheek out of nowhere because he had won the trial and gotten his client off. He was a brilliant attorney.
Employment with the Federal Judiciary is an extremely important and respected place to work. I took pride in working there, as it taught me to have high standards.