Litigation Legal Secretary

Build your big career with the Firm that does Big Law better. McDermott Will & Emery is a leading global law firm that brings together more than 1,400 lawyers and 1,200 business professionals. We celebrate excellence, collaboration and community and have been recognized as a top workplace by The American Lawyer, Working Mother Magazine, Vault and the Human Rights Campaign. 

At McDermott, we don’t just invest in your future, we accelerate your career – wherever it may lead. That includes supporting you both in and outside of the office.

With us, you’ll find:

  • A Firm where everyone belongs: Our award-winning culture prioritizes warmth and authenticity we encourage you to be yourself!
  • Enthusiasm for diverse perspectives: We’re smarter and stronger when everyone has a voice and a seat at the table. We welcome unique viewpoints and ideas, and we make opportunities for you and your career to thrive.
  • Support to feel your best and do your best: Wellness is integral to building a successful career and a rich life. That’s why our benefits program supports your physical, emotional, mental and financial health, with an emphasis on work/life balance.
  • Real rewards for real work: We offer generous compensation packages that recognize hard work and excellence.

Position Summary:

The Intellectual Property Legal Secretary performs a variety of administrative support tasks for the assigned attorneys within the designated Practice Group. This position supports the Firmwide Intellectual Property Practice Group Leader and may perform additional duties and responsibilities relating to the practice group. The qualified candidate must have substantive knowledge, understanding and experience in Intellectual Property litigation including: high level knowledge of patents and their prosecution history; experience with legal filings specific to patent litigation; trial experience and experience working with a trial team; managing databases; filing in various jurisdictions, etc. The candidate should be solutions oriented and have excellent analytical, organizational and communication skills. The IP Litigation Legal Secretary works under general supervision and relies on instruction and guidelines to perform the essential functions of the job.

Essential Functions and Responsibilities:

  • Support all aspects of trial preparation, including handling logistics and supporting at trial as necessary
  • Edit, proofread, and redline documents (agreements, pleadings, spreadsheets, and presentations) and correspondence for accuracy, grammar, and formatting
  • Review and edit prebills; work with billing practice group to ensure client bills are sent out timely; prepare expense reports and submit vendor invoices for timely payment
  • Organize and maintain attorney contacts and calendars, including travel logistics and scheduling
  • Input, review, edit, and update attorney time entries
  • Coordinate meeting logistics, including scheduling, arranging videoconferences, conferences calls, and conference rooms; requesting equipment and food and beverage orders; preparing presentation materials; and welcoming visitors
  • Answer incoming telephone calls and document and relay messages
  • Organize and maintain paper and electronic files in accordance with Firm records retention policies
  • Proactively remind attorneys of impending deadlines and obligations

Job Specifications:

  • Bachelor’s degree preferred but not required
  • At least three (3) years of related work experience within Intellectual Property (IP) litigation
  • Knowledge of court rules and civil procedures in State and Federal jurisdictions, including experience with electronic filing
  • Knowledge of trial procedures including managing databases, filing in various jurisdictions, and other aspects of trial preparation
  • Knowledge of Microsoft Office Suite (Excel, Outlook, PowerPoint and Word)
  • Strong written and verbal communication skills; professional demeanor and presentation
  • Strong client service skills with high-level standards of excellence in work product to meet or exceed client and Firm expectations
  • Strong organizational skills, time management skills, and attention to detail
  • Ability to work under tight deadlines and prioritize responsibilities
  • Strong problem-solving skills with ability to take initiative and use good judgment and excellent follow-up skills
  • Ability to maintain and handle confidential and sensitive information with discretion and diplomacy
  • Ability to work effectively in a fast-paced environment
  • Travel as required to attend trials
  • Working knowledge of Relativity, PACER, CM/ECF, Westlaw, Lexis, as well as other relevant litigation applications is preferred.

Physical Demands and Work Environment:

The physical demands and work environment characteristics described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

Physical Demands:

  • While performing the duties of this job, the employee is required to sit, use hands, reach with hands and arms, stoop, talk and hear
  • Employee must occasionally lift up to twenty (20) pounds

Work Environment:

  • Typical indoor office environment


The above statements are intended to describe the general nature and level of the work being performed by people within this classification. They are not intended to be an exhaustive list of all responsibilities, duties and skills required of employees assigned to this job.


As part of our ongoing commitment to be #AlwaysBetter for our people, clients and communities, we have created a culture of belonging that champions your individuality as both a person and a professional. From our competitive compensation, top benefits and award-winning professional development programs to industry-leading wellness initiatives, we support you through every stage of your life and career. With McDermott, you can live a life you love both in and outside of the office.


Successful candidates will be provided with outstanding career opportunities and will receive a competitive total rewards package with the opportunity to earn performance-based bonuses.

Expected Pay Range in San Francisco & Silicon Valley offices $75,000 – $135,000

Please note that quoted salary ranges are not guarantees of what final salary offers may be. Base pay is based on market location and may vary depending on job-related knowledge, skills, and experience. Base pay is only one part of the Total Rewards that MWE provides to compensate and recognize our staff professionals for their work. Full time positions are eligible for a discretionary bonus and a comprehensive benefits package.