Legal Secretary

Philadelphia, PA
Full Time
Entry Level

This position is for an immediate opening and will be based in Philadelphia, PA, or Washington, D.C. FIRE operates on a hybrid work schedule that allows for a mix of in-the-office and remote work for eligible employees.This position will be required to be in the office on filing days.

FIRE is seeking a full-time Legal Secretary to help support its Litigation department in matters involving freedom of speech and conscience, due process, and academic freedom. This position is an excellent opportunity to bring about real-world impact by supporting attorneys engaging in strategic litigation on First Amendment issues.

Candidates should be exceptionally detail-oriented, proactive, able to work independently, and technologically proficient. Candidates should also have demonstrated experience working in a fast-paced environment and strong organizational skills to manage multiple projects at a given time.

About FIRE

Founded in 1999, the Foundation for Individual Rights and Expression (FIRE) is a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization dedicated to defending the individual rights of all Americans to free speech and free thought — the most essential qualities of liberty. Because colleges and universities play a vital role in preserving free thought within a free society, FIRE places a special emphasis on defending the individual rights of students and faculty members on our nation’s campuses. Please visit to gain a sense of our work and mission.

Position Description

FIRE is seeking an entrepreneurial and efficient Legal Secretary to provide support to the Litigation case teams. While this position reports directly to the Vice President of Litigation, the Legal Secretary will regularly provide support to attorneys across the Litigation team at FIRE. Their daily responsibilities will include, but are not limited to:

  • Performing general administrative tasks including scheduling and calendaring meetings, copying, printing, filing, and formatting documents, and performing other related and similar tasks for case teams.
  • Conducting background and conflict checks and assisting attorneys in vetting potential clients. 
  • Conducting basic research including researching and interpreting court rules to determine compliance.
  • Calculating, calendaring, and tracking court deadlines and hearing dates for assigned cases and updating the Litigation department’s calendar.
  • Assisting attorneys with case launches and overall case management, including; organizing and maintaining case pleadings, discovery, and other files on paper and electronically on Net Documents.
  • Drafting templates or shells and creating tables of contents and authorities for legal briefs.
  • Preparing summonses, motions, declarations, proposed orders, and other legal documents.
  • Cite-checking legal documents.
  • Proofreading and formatting legal documents and correspondences.
  • Filing documents in federal and state court.
  • Assisting attorneys with discovery in assigned cases. 
  • Maintaining litigation-related pages on FIRE’s website and updating the site with new lawsuits, developments in existing cases, and amicus filings. 
  • Managing public records requests.
  • Assisting in making and coordinating case-related travel arrangements for Litigation department attorneys.
  • Submitting check requests for case-related invoices.
  • Assisting with the administrative tracking and management of the Litigation department’s overall caseload.
  • Assisting Litigation department case teams and attorneys as needed and as assigned by the Vice President of Litigation;

This position will also perform other support functions for the day-to-day operation of FIRE and will frequently collaborate with other staff members and departments on general duties and specialized projects.

There may be some occasional work on weekends and evenings and, although projected to be rare, this position may be required to be available in the event of an emergency.


A successful candidate will have exceptional organizational skills and attention to detail, a good work ethic, self-motivation, and the ability to work independently. Most importantly, the candidate must strive for perfection when executing job functions. This position requires the ability to meet deadlines and successfully manage multiple projects at a given time. Further, a candidate must be able to demonstrate:

Exceptional organizational skills and the ability to juggle multiple assignments with efficiency and excellence in a fast-paced environment.

  • Superior attention to detail.
  • Familiarity with e-discovery.
  • Proficiency in using a Mac Operating System.
  • Expertise in Google Workspace, Microsoft Office, and Adobe Acrobat.
  • Exceptional verbal and written communication skills.
  • Sound judgment.
  • Strong copy editing skills.
  • Strong interpersonal communication skills (phone and email courtesy, and the ability to properly manage sensitive information to maintain confidence of clients).
  • Knowledge of FIRE’s mission and a willingness to advocate for that mission.

Previous work experience in a litigation environment, certified notary public, and experience with, Notion, RocketMatter, and NetDocuments are a plus. A candidate interested in learning paralegal skills (e-discovery, trial management) is strongly preferred.  

Candidates must have a four-year undergraduate degree from an accredited college or university.

Salary and Compensation

Starting salary is negotiable and depends upon experience and education level. FIRE conducts periodic evaluations where employees may receive raises or bonuses for outstanding and excellent work. FIRE also offers a comprehensive benefits package that includes employer-paid comprehensive health, dental, and life insurance, a Section 125 Flexible Spending Account option, matching 403(b) retirement contributions, and a generous paid time-off plan.


Applicants should provide a resume, cover letter, writing sample, salary requirements, and contact information for at least two professional references. All applications are confidential. Please address applications to Cait Scanlan, Director of People Operations.

FIRE is an equal opportunity employer.


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