Legal Support Senior Specialist

Merck USA - Kenilworth, NJ4.1

Requisition ID: PAR000162

Merck & Co., Inc. Kenilworth, N.J., U.S.A. known as Merck in the United States and Canada, is a global health care leader with a diversified portfolio of prescription medicines, vaccines and animal health products. The difference between potential and achievement lies in the spark that fuels innovation and inventiveness; this is the space where Merck has codified its legacy for over a century. Merck’s success is backed by ethical integrity, forward momentum, and an inspiring mission to achieve new milestones in global healthcare.

We are currently seeking a Paralegal III to join the Corporate Transactions organization in the Office of General Counsel to provide support for Research & Development Sourcing & Procurement (RDSP). RDSP is responsible for contracting and related supplier management for Merck Research Laboratories (MRL). Some of the MRL areas and work that are supported include: Discovery, Pre-Clinical and Early Development, Clinical Development, Central Labs, Lab Equipment & Supplies, CORE (Center for Observational and Real-World Evidence) and Functional Outsourcing.


The successful candidate will be expected to:
Independently review, draft, negotiate and/or develop complex agreements
Lead teams in the review, development and/or negotiation of agreements and the related communications to internal business partners and external stakeholders
RDSP. Review modifications to RDSP agreements during the negotiation process. Discuss transactions with RDSP and MRL stakeholders to understand the transaction and appropriately revise the language to meet the needs of MRL and adequately protect Merck’s interests. Work with non-Merck templates such as CRADAs, cooperative group agreements, CDAs, academic institution templates from the US and outside the US.
Center for Observational and Real-World Evidence (CORE). Support complex work from the CORE group. Guide the RDSP and MRL team in negotiating with academic and nonprofit research centers to balance the center’s desire to maintain ownership and control of the output with Merck’s need to use the results and to retain access to certain types of inventions.
Contract interpretation. Respond to stakeholder questions on Merck’s rights and responsibilities. Be a trusted resource for contract interpretation and related guidance through cultivating, maintaining and influencing relationships with stakeholders
Dispute resolution. Work with the Merck team when disputes arise to find an appropriate resolution.
Train and coach. Train and coach new-to-role or new personnel on negotiating Merck agreements.
Template language. Work with RDSP on the development of new template agreement language.
Independently handle legal and/or factual research as appropriate
Screen requests for legal advice/support, and review information provided from client for completeness, as needed
Coach others to critically evaluate information to identify issues and provide optimal legal counsel under direction of attorney as appropriate
Respond to questions and inquiries with sound legal advice under direction of attorney as appropriate

Education Minimum Requirement:
High School degree required
Bachelor’s degree or paralegal certificate or equivalent experience strongly preferred

Required Experience and Skills:
Experience with, or study of, either (i) legal principles – preferably in the areas of contract law and/or intellectual property, or (ii) science – either through work experience or a college degree in science or engineering.

Preferred Experience and Skills:
Experience drafting and negotiating agreements – preferably in life sciences or another industry where intellectual property rights play a role, either in-house or with a law firm – or demonstrated capability to develop same.
Ability to create new language for agreements in response to evolving issues in the negotiation process or to meet a particular business need.
Accuracy and attention to detail in analyses and communications.
Ability to speak and write clearly and succinctly, including ability to explain/articulate issues and effectively communicate sound legal advice to employees and third parties (under direction of attorney as appropriate).
Understanding of the specific legal concepts around contract law and intellectual property and ability to use that knowledge to shape decisions that support appropriate business goals.
Effective time management to meet deadlines including project management skills, prioritization, and consistent delivery of commitments in a fast-paced and demanding work environment, and ability to organize information and build upon ideas of others.
Ability to foresee possible risks to project goals and deadlines and create pre-emptive solutions.
Autonomy on complex tasks as well as ability to recognize need for and seek further direction of attorney.
Team player attitude, flexibility and adaptability, and a willingness to work on a variety of legal matters.
Responsive and service-oriented attitude.
Ability to maintain strong working relationships with internal clients.
Discreet in handling sensitive and confidential information, and a high level of integrity.
Clear motivation and focus on achieving measurable, tangible results.
Willingness to adopt change.
Advanced Proficiency in MS Office Suite (Outlook, Word (including track changes features), Excel).

Your role at Merck is integral to helping the world meet new breakthroughs that affect generations to come, and we’re counting on your skills and inventiveness to help make meaningful contributions to global medical advancement. At Merck, we’re inventing for life.

If you need assistance and/or a reasonable accommodation due to a disability during the application or the recruiting process, please send a request to

Search Firm Representatives Please Read Carefully:
Merck & Co., Inc. is not accepting unsolicited assistance from search firms for this employment opportunity. Please, no phone calls or emails. All resumes submitted by search firms to any employee at Merck via email, the Internet or in any form and/or method without a valid written search agreement in place for this position will be deemed the sole property of Merck. No fee will be paid in the event the candidate is hired by Merck as a result of the referral or through other means.

Visa sponsorship is not available for this position.