Clerk's Office - Deputy Clerk I

Cowlitz County, WA - Kelso, WA

This position performs duties related to maintaining case file information for Superior Court in accordance with the procedures set forth in Revised Code of Washington, Rules of Court, bargaining unit contract and departmental policies and procedures. Manage juries for both Superior Court and District Court. Assist public, legal community, and state and local government personnel, taking care to avoid giving legal advice.

This position requires applicants to pass a test - NCRC Work Keys - no later than December 5, 2018.

  • Clerical Exam:
Applicant must pass Level 4 (Silver Level) or higher of each of the three (3) ACT/Work Keys – National Career Readiness Test (NCRC) or current employees of Cowlitz County must have passed the Cowlitz County Clerical Exam.
Cowlitz County has partnered with Lower Columbia College (LCC) in Longview,WA, to facilitate the testing process. Test scores are good for 5 years.
Test Cost is $55.
LCC Testing is available 10:00 am to 5:00 pm, Monday through Thursday and closed on LCC observed holidays.
Testing is available by appointment only.
Applicants must take the NCRC tests no later than 3 business days after the job announcement closes.
To schedule testing, individuals can register at : or call the Testing Center directly at 360-442-2353

Benefits Information:
Cowlitz County offers a generous benefits package which includes:

Medical/Dental/Vision (includes dependent coverage)
VEBA/Health Retirement Account for those who qualify
Retirement through Washington State Public Employees Retirement System
Life Insurance
Deferred Compensation plans available (457b)
Vacation, Bonus and Leave Days Paid
10 Paid Holidays
Reasonable work hours
The County
Cowlitz County is a great place to live and work. Located along the Columbia River less than an hour from the Cascade Mountains and the Pacific Ocean, Cowlitz County provides an abundance of outdoor recreational opportunities and easy access to the Arts. The I-5 corridor runs right through Cowlitz County providing quick access to the Vancouver, Washington and Portland, Oregon metropolitan areas.
Job Duties

General Duties To All Deputy Clerks:
Assist the public and legal community in accomplishing necessary business with Clerk's Office through answering of phones, waiting on the counter, written correspondence and e-mail.
Maintain, update, secure, and archive all case records filed with Cowlitz County Superior Court.
Certify legal documents using the Cowlitz County Superior Court seal.
Attend and participate in staff meetings. Provide input and recommendations to improve own work processes and the general operation, performance and services provided by the department.
Attend required or offered training courses.
Perform other duties as assigned by the Supervisor or County Clerk, including assisting in guiding and training new staff and cross-training other staff.

Judicial Operations Deputy:
Receipt monies for fines, bail, restitution, court costs, clerk's fees, child support and trust accounts.
Accept documents for filing and assign case numbers on new cases on criminal, civil, domestic, protection orders, probate, mental, paternity, and adoptions.
Provide forms to litigants of domestic violence and forward protective orders to law enforcement agencies as required by law.
Provide forms for sale and procedural assistance to the un-represented litigant, taking care not to give legal advice.
Provide copies by fax or mail of all child support related filed documents to the Washington State Support Registry as required by law.
Administer jury oaths, read verdict and poll jury if so requested at trial. When necessary during deliberations, remain on call after regular business hours to take verdict. Perform court bailiff duties in absence of bailiff.
Take minutes on jury trials and hearings held by Superior Court, including audio and videotaping. Enter relevant information into the statewide computer system. Distribute required information to appropriate departments and agencies.
Mark and maintain custody of evidence presented and accepted in court.
Order all forms and maintain supplies and equipment in public access area and/or the counter.
Perform searches of records as requested by customer at the counter or through written correspondence.
Prep files for microfilming project when other duties are completed.

Judicial Criminal Deputy:
Organize criminal calendars daily, attend to a variety of duties related to criminal calendars. Enter all data on hearings and new cases accurately, and well as accurate electronic records on the statewide database of all felony arrests in Cowlitz County.
Attend all criminal dockets and record minutes in written form for paper file and complete coded entry in statewide database. Operate video courtroom proceeding equipment.
Attend weekly Specialized Drug Court docket and pre-calendar hearing to record information for files.
Attend weekly pre-calendar meeting with the presiding judge, defense counsel and prosecuting attorneys to discuss the upcoming Superior Court jury trials and hearings and take notes as to their status so as to keep the Superior Court Administrator informed.
Process all criminal appeal transcripts, verbatim reports as required to the Court of Appeals.
Type arrest warrants. Keep track of "quashed" warrants and contact local Law Enforcement Records to drop the warrant.
Fingerprint convicted defendants at sentencing and review all paperwork received while in court on calendars to ensure accuracy, then distribute copies of sentencing/disposition paperwork to proper agencies as required.
Confiscate driver's licenses on applicable convicted felons and send to Department of Licensing.
Send out written trial notices to attorney and prosecutor when trials are set in court as required by statute.
Maintain accurate list and assign court appointed attorneys to accused criminals, then contact law offices of new appointments and provide monthly list to Superior Court Administrator for billing purposes.
Record bail and release conditions that may include non-contact orders, and send to the criminal justice agencies as required.
Maintain and update list of all bail bond agencies approved by court.
Verify convicted felon report and send to Auditor's Election Department to remove felon's name from registered voters' list.
Send report on applicable cases to Department of Licensing - Firearms Division, to ensure that convicted felon's firearms rights are removed.
Respond to all correspondence and questions via telephone or counter.
Serve as back-up for indexing all criminal paperwork filed, as workload allows, and Operation Deputy duties to cover departmental needs.

Judicial Civil and Process Deputy:
Organize and attend to a variety of duties related to all civil/domestic calendars. These calendars are held every Monday and Friday and pertain to child support/custody issues, divorce, domestic violence, unlawful detainer actions, paternities, civil lawsuits, probate, guardianship and adoptions.
Take minutes on hearings and case dockets held by Superior Court. Includes videotaping. Enter relevant information into the statewide computer system. Distribute required information to appropriate departments and agencies.
Verify service of Protection Order papers before court calendar and ensure that paperwork gets forwarded to proper law enforcement agencies. Enter data on domestic violence protective orders on several computer screens so that courts statewide can access and know who is protected from whom.
Type up bench warrants on all civil and domestic cases as per court order.
Process all civil appeal transcripts and verbatim reports to the Court of Appeals.
Send out written trial notices to all parties involved in case when trails are set by court as required by statute.
Record all court ordered monetary judgments into the computer system for access by title companies and other public entities.
Monitor cases for Clerk's dismissals, preparing and mailing notices as required.
Maintain a complete and accurate record of each document filed with Superior Court by posting data into the WA State Judicial Information System. It consists of entering new cases and additional data (over 75,000 documents filed annually) on multiple screens, discerning what needs to be done with each type of document posted in the computer system.
Distribute daily statistical and new case filings, weekly trial calendars and judgment reports.
Complete and forward monthly vital stat forms to WA State Department of Vital Records on dissolutions that are finalized.
Monitor judgments involving motor vehicle deaths or injury. Notify the WA State Department of Licensing if unpaid so that they can rescind debtor's driver's license.
Perform Operation Deputy functions to cover departmental needs.

Jury Management Clerk:
Manage jury pools for Cowlitz Superior, District, and Municipal courts through a specialized Jury Master program.
Prepare and send out in excess of 14,000 jury summonses per year with a new jury pool every two weeks. Send reminders to those who fail to respond. Excuse jurors by using guidelines provided by judges, refer requests not conforming to guidelines to judges for further determination. Perform in-person, by phone and correspondence info-customer service for jury duty.
Schedule appropriate amount of jurors required for trials by updating a "juror reporting" recording through voice mail and the jurors' info page on department's Website.
Register jurors on the day assigned, assign jurors to specified courts, prepare paperwork for court to use in jury trial with random list selected.
Review master jury list received annually retrieved from voters' registration and Washington State Driver's License records. Update jury master list for duplicate names, deceased individuals and those that have moved.
Prepare payroll sheets of jurors' time and mileage and forward copies to County Auditor for payment.
Keep track of juror-reporting statistics for use by department head.
Assist and perform the duties of Records Management Clerk as needed.

Records Management Clerk:
Organize and microfilm daily selected documents filed the previous day, then pass on to the process clerks for computer data entry. File all documents after computer data entry, performing a final check for proper numbering sequence of documents.
Retrieve files, which may be located at the Clerk's office or at the extra file storage in the Hall of Justice basement, for title companies, attorney's offices, courts, law enforcement, other agencies, for calendars or the public, monitoring for timely return and contacting them when overdue. Replace/re-file records daily.
Secure area for storage of evidence/exhibits, court reporter notes, videotapes and audiotapes. Monitor cases for timely disposal and prepare motions and orders for destruction.
Build up new case file folders when needed. Keep supervisor apprised of file supply needs providing estimates of volumes needed each year.
Monitor the storage of all active files, which requires organizing and moving large numbers of files on a yearly basis.
Assist in coordinating the microfilming process of inactive files by the extra help and volunteer personnel.
Assist and perform the duties of the jury management clerk.

Collection Deputy Clerk:
Conduct financial status and personal interview of adult and juvenile defendants owing legal financial obligations in order to set up stipulated payment agreements and make recommendations to the court.
Prepares monthly payment, or appear to calendar reviewing payment status to make recommendations to the court for bench warrants or continued monitoring.
Monitor a large volume of cases for compliance with payments on court ordered legal financial obligations. Determine steps to take when failures to comply, according to procedures and the specific case.
Monitors all drug court participant's cases on a weekly basis for compliance with payment of their specialized fees and restitution, making a report to the judge.
Enters data in the statewide computer system's collection module in order to set up cases on financial monitoring, using the tools available for reports, demand payment letters, notes, etc.
Collaborate closely with Department of Corrections, Prosecutor's Office, and Judges to coordinate collection efforts.
Monitor the expiration period of the ten-year limit of enforcement of financial obligations, so that if balance is still owed, it is brought up to motion before the court to extend enforcement period for an additional ten-year period.
Continually evaluate processes and procedures for monitoring payments owed to the courts. Make suggestions and revisions.
Assist or perform the duties of the Criminal Deputy Clerk or Operations Deputy Clerk as needed or assigned.

Minimum Qualifications:
High School diploma or equivalent.
Must pass Level 4 (Silver Level) of each of the 3 ACT/Work Keys – National Career Readiness Tests (NCRC) through Lower Columbia College (LCC) or provide a passing NCRC Certificate or current employees of Cowlitz County must have passed the Cowlitz County Clerical Exam.
Knowledge and experience in the use and operation of personal computers with word processing and database software. Skilled in high volume data entry requiring high degrees of accuracy.
One (1) year of experience in a clerical capacity with strong customer service and high-volume records management.
Supplemental Information

Required Skills and Abilities:
Strong interpersonal and customer service skills to courteously deal with the public and other county employees requiring services. Develop and maintain good working relations with other county employees, outside agencies, lawyers, title companies, and law enforcement agents.
Work well independently, as well as in teams and cooperative environment, which requires coordination with other staff.
Manage work-related stress and perform work in a multi-task environment. Organizational and time-management skills in order to complete work within date/time deadlines.
Communicate effectively orally and in writing in a professional business-like level. Possess and apply legible handwriting.
Maintain a professional appearance.
Exercise discretion over sensitive and confidential issues related to the department, the courts and their business.
Maintain high accuracy, ethics and efficiency in handling money-cash transactions, maintain the cash drawer and give accurate change.