Opportunities at Work

New York State Department of Civil Service Announces Open-Competitive Examination Open to the Public

Legal Affairs Specialist 1

Written Test To Be Held
December 01, 2012
Applications Must Be Submitted or Postmarked By
October 18, 2012

 

Exams Included on This Announcement
Exam Number Exam Title Salary Salary Grade Fee
25-592 Legal Affairs Specialist 1 $41,170 G-14 $35
25-593 Legal Affairs Specialist 1 (Spanish Language) $41,170 G-14

Appointees who work in the five boroughs of New York City or in Nassau, Suffolk, Rockland, or Westchester Counties will receive an additional $3,026 annual downstate adjustment. Appointees who work in Dutchess, Orange, or Putnam Counties will receive an additional $1,513 annual mid-Hudson adjustment.

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Minimum Qualifications

On or before December 1, 2012, you must have had four years of paraprofessional or professional experience* providing services to individuals in need of and/or eligible for social services programs or implementing/administering programs regulated by the New York State Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance, the New York State Office of Children and Family Services, or the New York State Department of Health.

* For the purpose of this examination: Qualifying paraprofessional or professional experience includes but is not limited to experience as a social services or welfare examiner at a local or district agency; child protective caseworker; social worker for a social services or child protective program; a caseworker or counselor at a registered not-for-profit or charitable agency.

Non-qualifying experience: Non-qualifying experience includes but is not limited to experience where duties are primarily routine clerical, office support staff, or food service worker which includes positions as a receptionist, secretary, file clerk, data/keyboard entry, or cook.

Substitution

  1. An associate or higher degree in law or legal assistant/paralegal education from a regionally accredited college or university, or college or university accredited by the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools (ACICS), may be substituted for the four years of experience required above.†
  2. Completion of a legal assistant/paralegal education, qualifying non-degree certificate program where the certificate was issued by a regionally accredited or ACICS accredited college or university AND two years of paralegal experience, may be substituted for the four years of experience required above. Completion of an external** legal assistant/paralegal certificate program is not qualifying.
  3. College education in any field may substitute for up to two years of the above general experience at the rate of 30 semester credit hours or the equivalent thereof, will provide credit of up to one year of the required experience. College credit must have been received from a regionally accredited college or university. You must clearly indicate the college credit on the application form or on a separate sheet or indicate the credits on the online application in the space provided for course work.

† Revised Material

** Non-degree certificates of completion or diplomas awarded by a training institution or company not regionally accredited or accredited by the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools (ACICS), are not qualifying.

Notes

  1. Your degree or college credit must have been awarded by a regionally accredited college or university or one recognized by the NYS Education Department as following acceptable educational practices. If your degree or college credit was awarded by an educational institution outside the United States and its territories, you must provide independent verification of equivalency. You can write to the Examination Information Desk of the NYS Department of Civil Service for a list of acceptable companies who provide this service. You must pay the required evaluation fee. If you are applying on the Internet, you must mail the independent verification of equivalency to the NYS Department of Civil Service, Albany, New York 12239. Attention: S1JFG.
  2. You may file for these examinations by completing one examination application NYS-APP form or applying on the Internet. Unless you are eligible for a fee waiver, the indicated processing fee must be submitted for each examination listed on your application.
  3. If you are qualified for No. 25-593 Legal Affairs Specialist 1 (Spanish Language), you should file for both examinations, as there is only one application processing fee.
  4. If you do not receive a confirmation number after submitting your online application, your application was NOT processed. Applications must be postmarked or submitted online by October 15, 2012. Late applications will not be accepted.
  5. If you pass the examination for No. 25-593 Legal Affairs Specialist 1 (Spanish Language) you will be required to demonstrate your Spanish language proficiency at a level that will ensure your ability to perform properly the duties of the position. Only enough candidates to fill current vacancies will be called to the proficiency test.
  6. Appropriate part-time and volunteer experience, which can be verified, will be accepted on a prorated basis.
  7. New York State residence is not required.

The Positions

These positions exist in the New York State Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance in Albany and Brooklyn and in the Office of Children and Family Services in Rensselaer.

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Duties

Legal Affairs Specialists review and make proper determinations on requests for fair hearings, adjournments, withdrawals, aid continuances, complaints of non-compliance with hearing decisions, and process for appealing fair hearing decisions from clients and their representatives. They respond to inquiries relating to the appeals process and make appropriate referrals; and provide guidance to local districts in meeting regulatory requirements pertaining to the hearing process.

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Subject of Examination

There will be a written test which you must pass in order to be considered for appointment. The written test is designed to test for knowledge, skills, and/or abilities in such areas as:

  1. Ensuring effective inter/intra agency communications - These questions will test candidates’ understanding of techniques for interacting effectively with individuals and agencies, to educate and inform them about topics of concern, to clarify agency programs or policies, to negotiate conflicts or resolve complaints, and to represent one’s agency or program in a manner in keeping with good public relations practices. Questions may also cover interacting with the staff of one’s own agency and/or that of other agencies in cooperative efforts of public outreach or service.
  2. Interviewing - These questions test for knowledge of the principles and practices employed in obtaining information from individuals through structured conversations. These questions require you to apply the principles, practices, and techniques of effective interviewing to hypothetical interviewing situations. Included are questions that present a problem arising from an interviewing situation, and you must choose the most appropriate course of action to take.
  3. Preparing written material - These questions test for the ability to present information clearly and accurately, and to organize paragraphs logically and comprehensibly. For some questions, you will be given information in two or three sentences followed by four restatements of the information. You must then choose the best version. For other questions, you will be given paragraphs with their sentences out of order. You must then choose, from four suggestions, the best order for the sentences.
  4. Understanding written material based on Social Services law - These questions test your ability to read, interpret, and understand various provisions of the Social Services law and its rules and regulations. You will be provided with a reading selection based on, or extracted from, a passage of legal text. You must read the selection and then answer one or more questions based upon it. All factual information needed to answer the questions is provided in the reading selection. No prior knowledge of the material is needed to answer the questions correctly.

Your final score must be 70 or higher in order to pass. Rank on the eligible list will be determined after adding any wartime veterans' and Civil Service Law Section 85-a credits to your final passing score.

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How To Apply

This announcement is for viewing purposes only.

If you do not receive a confirmation number after submitting your online application, your application was NOT processed.

Additional Information

New York State is an Equal Opportunity Employer

It is the policy of the State of New York to provide for and promote equal opportunity employment, compensation, and other terms and conditions of employment without discrimination on the basis of age, race, color, religion, disability, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, veteran or military service member status, marital status, domestic violence victim status, genetic predisposition or carrier status, or arrest and/or criminal conviction record unless based upon a bona fide occupational qualification or other exception.

Appointment to many positions in State government require candidates to undergo an investigative screening. This may include a thorough character investigation, a Federal Bureau of Investigation Criminal Record History Check, a Child Abuse Registry clearance, or other similar procedures. Candidates may be fingerprinted and may be required to pay any necessary fees for that procedure. Depending on the nature of the job, the criminal convictions discovered, or any falsified or omitted information revealed, the investigative findings may bar appointment or result in removal after appointment.

Eligibility for Employment

You must be legally eligible to work in the United States at the time of appointment and throughout your employment with New York State. If appointed, you must produce documents that establish your identity and eligibility to work in the United States, as required by the federal Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986, and the Immigration and Nationality Act.

Religious Accommodation

Most written tests are held on Saturdays. If you cannot take the test on the announced test date, due to a conflict with a religious observance or practice, check the box under “Religious Accommodation.” We will make arrangements for you to take the test on a different date (usually the following day).

Reasonable Accommodations in Testing

It is the policy of the Department of Civil Service, in accordance with the New York State Human Rights Law and the Americans with Disabilities Act, to provide qualified persons with disabilities equal employment opportunity and equal opportunity to participate in and receive the benefits, services, programs, and activities of the Department. It is the policy of the Department to provide such persons reasonable accommodations and reasonable modifications as are necessary to provide equal opportunity. Persons with disabilities who require an accommodation to participate in an examination must note this on their application. Further information is available from the Test Administration Unit of the Department of Civil Service. In the Albany area, call 518-457-2487 [press 2, then press 2]. Outside of the Albany area, call toll free at 1-877-697-5627 [press 2, then press 2]. For TDD services, call NY Relay at 711 (requires a fee) or 1-800-662-1220.

Admission to Examination

Notice to appear for the test may be conditional as review of applications may not be made until after the test. If you have not received your notice to appear for the written test three days before the date of the test, call 518-474-6470 in the Albany area or toll free at 1-877-697-5627 [press 2, then press 1].

Multiple Examinations Scheduled for the Same Day

If you have applied to take a written test announced by either one or several local jurisdictions (county, town, city) scheduled to be held on the same test date as this written test, you must notify each of the local jurisdictions no later than two weeks before the test date to make arrangements for taking all tests at one test site. All tests will be held at the state examination center. For your convenience, contact information for all local civil service agencies is available on our website at: http://www.cs.ny.gov/jobseeker/local.cfm

Cell Phones or Electronic/Communication Devices at the Test Site

Do not bring cell phones, beepers, headphones, or any electronic or other communication devices to the test site. The use of such devices at the test site in the test room, hallways, restrooms, building, grounds, or other areas could result in your disqualification.

S1/TC1 JFG-vla
Issued: 9/14/2012
Revised Material: 9/26/2012

This announcement is subject to amendment or cancellation without notice. Do not copy it, or post it to any other site, but link to it instead.

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