Chief Assistant County Counsel

Job Specification

Class Code:




Date Originated:


Date Revised:




Under general direction, to provide highly skilled legal services in counseling and representing agencies of the county; to act for the County Counsel when necessary; to assist the County Counsel in the administration and direction of the county Counselís office; and to do other work as required.


This single position class assists the department head in the administration and coordination of departmental activities and serves as the acting director in the absence of the department head. This class differs from the higher class of County Counsel in that the latter is responsible for providing policy direction and for the overall administration of the entire department. This class is distinguished from the lower class of Attorney IV in that the former has day-to-day operational responsibility for the department. Incumbents serve as a member of the management team to assist the County Counsel in conducting long range planning and setting policies and procedures for the County Counsel office.


Meets with and advises the Board of Supervisors and the County Administrative Officer, other County boards and commissions, including the boards of directors of special districts, with respect to both legal advice and litigation; prepares complex legal reports, opinions, briefs and appeals; prepares drafts of contracts, notices, ordinances, resolutions and other legal documents; performs research, investigations, and detailed legal preparation for the trial or defense of the county in cases involving civil litigation; advises subordinates on the interpretation and application of statutes and decisional law ordinances, and office policies and procedures; orients and trains new attorneys, including effective methods of handling client problems and interaction with the public; reviews proposed legislation to determine its effect upon the County and special districts; prepares and administers the operational budget for the Department; assists in the overall administration of the office and participates in the selection of legal staff.



††††††††††† Thorough Knowledge of:

         Principles of civil, constitutional and administrative law;

         Responsibilities, powers and statutory limitations of the County Counselís office;

         Judicial procedures and the rules of evidence;

         Principles, methods, materials and practices of legal research.

Working Knowledge of:

         Organization, powers and limitations of County governmental functions and of the California Constitution;

         Budget preparation and administration


         Plan, organize, direct and coordinate the day-to-day operations of the County Counselís Office;

         Research, analyze and apply legal principles, facts, evidence and precedents to complex legal problems;

         Exercise initiative, ingenuity and sound judgment to solve difficult administrative, technical and personnel problems;

         Analyze and appraise a variety of legal documents and instruments;

         Draft legal documents such as ordinances, resolutions, statutes, and contracts;

         Assign, train and evaluate the work of professional staff;

         Prepare and present concise and logical statements of fact, law, argument and technical and administrative reports

         Develop and implement policies, systems and procedures to improve operations;

         Interpret, analyze, explain and apply complex laws, legal documents, rules and regulations

         Establish and maintain effective working relationships with County and governmental officials and the general public

Training and Experience: Any combination of training and experience that would provide the necessary skills and abilities listed above is considered qualifying. A typical way to obtain the knowledge and abilities would be:

Five years of experience in the practice of the law, * including at least two years in a governmental law office handling civil legal matters.

*Notes: "Experience in the practice of the law" means only that experience gained after admission to a State Bar.


Membership in the California State Bar.


PREVIOUS CLASS TITLES: Chief Deputy County Counsel

Bargaining Unit: 06

EEOC Job Category: 01

Occupational Grouping: 32

Workerís Comp Code: 0053