Legal and Court Staff in the United States Judiciary

Legal and court staff play an important role in the administration of justice in the United States.
Whether by overseeing pretrial matters, assisting with legal research and drafting, or assuming
responsibility for court operations, the contributions of assistant judges, law clerks, and court
managers enable judges to focus on the demands of adjudication and thereby facilitate the efficient
operation of the judicial system.
Though the U.S. has a long history of delegating responsibility for discrete aspects of the
adjudicative and administrative functions to subordinate professionals, this practice is not
universally followed, with judges from other countries far less comfortable relinquishing authority to
assistants and clerks.  However, the international trend appears to be in the direction of creating
categories of professionals trained specifically to support judges.  Many judiciaries around the

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