Paralegal Specialist

Department of Youth Services - Boston, MA

Full-time | Part-time
The Department of Youth Services (DYS) is the juvenile justice agency for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. We work with young people who are detained or committed and provide detention, custody, diagnosis, education and support to young people ages 12-21. Most of the youth served are between the ages 14 and 18. The Department promotes positive change for the youth committed to our care, and has been on the forefront of de-institutionalization, in part, by providing adolescent-focused rehabilitation to youth in residential treatment.

The Department of Youth Services employs staff in various professions and backgrounds in order to engage young people in strategies that support positive youth development. We are seeking an energetic, positive and dynamic individual for the role of Paralegal Specialist to support our Legal Unit. Our Legal Unit is comprised of the General Counsel and two Assistant General Counsels, the Director of Policy and Training and the Director of Investigations, all of whom are attorneys. The Legal Unit also includes an Investigations Unit, which consists of a Director of Investigations and two (2) investigators; finally, we have one Office Support Specialist is assigned to provide support to the unit.

The Paralegal Specialist may work with any of the attorneys in the Legal Unit but would primarily be assigned to and provide assistance to the General Counsel, Assistant General Counsels and the Investigations Unit. Supervision on specific projects would be provided by the attorney assigned to the project. The incumbent of this position would be a valued member of the Investigations team within the Legal Unit of the Department. Our team is professional, dedicated, collaborative and passionate about the mission of DYS.

The duties and responsibilities of this position include, but are not limited to:

Perform routine administrative tasks, routine attorney support, maintain certain Access databases, prepare reports, charts, graphs and/or tables.
Compile statistics, schedule meetings, provide litigation support, conduct legal and other types of research.
Use information technology including Excel and the internet; use DYS’ online case management system and the unit’s online case management system.
Perform records review and redaction; analyze data and identify trends and patterns.
Prepare correspondence including legal memoranda; perform other paralegal work including the analysis or review of legislation and case law decisions; collect information and respond to discovery.
Assist with drafting decisions on client appeals and conduct discretionary review of certain background check information for new hires and current employees.
Provide administrative and organizational support to the Director of Investigations and two (2) field investigators to assist with managing and tracking internal reviews, investigations; issuance of reports, disciplinary or policy ramifications.
Participate in weekly team meetings as well as informal consultations and discussions concerning investigations.

Preferred Qualifications:
The ideal candidate should be mature, responsible, discreet and able to handle multiple assignments at one time.

Ability to function as an integral part of the team as well as act as a liaison with DYS staff outside the unit and contacts outside the agency.
Strong written and verbal communication skills; ability to engage in comprehensive analysis of written materials.
Excellent organizational skills, attention to detail; ability to lead projects independently, demonstrated initiative, ability to meet deadlines and prioritize work.
Proficiency in Westlaw or Lexis, Word, Excel, Access, scanning and other standard office equipment.
Flexibility, accessibility, and willingness to lend varying degrees of support when required.
Experience working in the juvenile justice or human services fields, and a demonstrated commitment to the public sector.
Familiarity with state’s records retention system and experience with budgeting.
Familiarity with the Background Check Process (i.e. Criminal Offenders Records Information), Department of Children and Families (DCF) abuse and neglect investigations, investigations work, the state’s Public Records Law, juvenile laws, and structure of the Executive Office of Health and Human Services agencies.
Enjoyment of challenges posed by fast-paced environment.

Additional Information:
The paralegal will work primarily in the DYS Central Office at 600 Washington Street, 4th Floor in Boston but may be called upon to travel to other DYS sites throughout the state. Visits to other DYS sites may involve entering hardware/ staff secure residential unit where DYS youth are committed or detained.

This is a Civil Service position. If there is no Civil Service list for this title, employees appointed must take and pass the next Civil Service examination when administered.

Transportation requirement - Must have reliable transportation.

Candidate must be flexible.

Minimum Age Requirement: 21 years.

Pre-Employment Requirements: Candidates must pass a pre-employment screening which includes: 1) Drug Screening; 2) Psychological Screening; 3) Medical Examination; and 4) Physical Abilities Test (PAT) for direct care positions. If you would like more information, please logon to the DYS website to access detailed information on the Pre-Employment process.

A criminal background check will be completed on the recommended candidate as required by the regulations set forth by the Executive Office of Health and Human Services prior to the candidate being hired. For more information, please visit and click on "Information for Job Applicants".

Education, licensure and certifications will be verified in accordance with the Human Resources Division’s Hiring Guidelines

Education and license/certification information provided by the selected candidate(s) is subject to the Massachusetts Public Records Law and may be published on the Commonwealth’s website.

For questions, please contact the CYF Office of Human Resources at 1-800-510-4122 and select option #2.

As part of the hiring process, the Office of Human Resources will be verifying any college-level degrees conferred to the selected candidate. Additionally, any licensure required for the position will be verified. Information provided as part of the hiring process is subject to the Massachusetts Public Record Law and may be published on the Commonwealth’s website.


First consideration will be given to those applicants that apply within the first 14 days.

Applicants must have at least (A) two years of full-time, or equivalent part-time, paraprofessional experience in legal research or legal assistant work, or (B) any equivalent combination of the required experience and the substitutions below.

I. An Associate's or higher degree with a major in paralegal studies may be substituted for the required experience.

II. Completion of one year of study at a recognized, degree-granting law school may be substituted for the required experience.

SPECIAL REQUIREMENTS: Based on assignment, possession of a current and valid Massachusetts Motor Vehicle Operator's License may be required.

An Equal Opportunity / Affirmative Action Employer. Females, minorities, veterans, and persons with disabilities are strongly encouraged to apply.

Official Title: Paralegal Specialist
Primary Location: United States-Massachusetts-Boston-600 Washington Street
Job: Legal Services
Agency: Department of Youth Services
Schedule: Full-time
Shift: Day
Job Posting: Nov 5, 2019, 8:41:15 AM
Number of Openings: 1
Salary: 53,055.60 - 75,629.06 Yearly
If you have Diversity, Affirmative Action or Equal Employment Opportunity questions or need a Reasonable Accommodation, please contact Diversity Officer / ADA Coordinator: Margaret Chow-Menzer - 617-960-3353
Bargaining Unit: 06-NAGE - Professional Admin.
Confidential: No