DEBT RECOVERY PARALEGAL

Job Description

Salary: Competitive

Full Time - Fixed Term until 31st March 2025 We are currently recruiting for the role of Debt Recovery Paralegal within the Housing & Civil Litigation Team in the Council’s Legal Services. If you have the relevant legal qualifications and experience, including a good understanding of court litigation and enforcement processes and experience in Civil Litigation work, and are looking for your next challenge, now is the perfect time to join us as a paralegal as we deliver our ambitions to be the best place to practice law in local government; recruiting the best talent, successfully deploying legal technology and providing the highest quality professional legal advice and representation to our clients. We seek the best talent from the widest pool of people as diversity and inclusion is the key to our success. Reading Borough Council is a Disability Confident Employer and is committed to the recruitment and continued employment of people with disabilities. We are open to flexible working patterns and can provide a hybrid working environment which utilises the best of both worlds with a mix of office working in central Reading and homeworking according to the needs of the Service. About the role This is an exciting role to assist the Housing & Litigation team in securing unpaid debt from a range of departments within the Council. This may include adult social care, s106 agreements and other service areas within the Council. Principal accountabilities and responsibilities include: * Be responsible for a caseload of Debt recovery matters, to include drafting Letters Before Action and corresponding with debtors * Issuing court proceedings on behalf of the Council and ensuring that instructions are lodged within timescales * Complying with relevant Protocols and timescales * Assisting the Principal Lawyer in the preparation of debt recovery cases including drafting settlement agreements, witness statements, preparing brief to counsel and applications to County court and Court of Protection * Preparing for court hearings * Ensuring that clients are kept up to date with the progress of cases and legal action * Ensuring that income received in is correctly recorded and monitored * Attending court where necessary and appearing in court, if appropriate * Diary management * General administration duties You’ll be part of a team that relies on each individual to play their part to the best of their ability. As well as the colleagues that you work closely with every day, you’ll also be part of Team Reading, playing your personal part in making Reading a successful and vibrant place. Our vision is to ensure that Reading realises its potential as a great place to live, work and play, and that everyone shares the benefits of this success. Our values and behaviours guide how we will achieve this: Work Together as one team - work collaboratively, with each other and with our partners, and demonstrate the Team Reading values in everything we do Drive Efficiency - show initiative, be adaptable to change and put forward ideas to help improve delivery and efficiency. Take responsibility for our own learning and development and for reaching our potential Be Ambitious - be demanding of our own performance – striving to be even better – and be prepared to engage with and challenge leaders in a constructive and positive way Make a Difference to Reading - maintain the highest levels of customer service and be flexible and willing to provide the services needed at the time they are needed About you To apply for this role, you will require: * Experience in Civil Litigation work including working within the Civil Procedure Rules * A good understanding of court litigation and enforcement process * Preferably knowledge of the Care Act 2014 and/or other local authority debts and enforcement work * Experience of managing a broad caseload * Ability to prioritise workload and to work effectively under pressure and comply with protocol and court deadlines * Experience of dealing with clients and members of the public * Ability to represent the team in meetings if required * Ability to maintain confidentiality * Excellent communication skills and relationship building skills * A flexible approach to work and ability to use initiative * Excellent IT skills and experience of using word, excel and sharepoint * Ability and willingness to be a strong team player and to cover colleagues’ cases in their absence Our offer We offer a supportive environment to grow and develop your career with the opportunity to put your ideas across. Innovation and ambition is strongly encouraged, and you’ll get a great feel for that working in our friendly and collaborative environment. A competitive salary alongside a range of benefits including: * Generous holiday entitlement - 25 days holiday each year plus bank holidays - rising to 33 days after 10 years' service, with the option to buy additional leave * A wide range of flexible working opportunities * Modern working environment at the Civic Offices in the heart of Reading * Local Government Pension Scheme (LGPS) * Life Assurance - three times your annual salary (for members of the LGPS) * On-site day nursery (Kennet Day nursery) rated outstanding by Ofsted, and a salary sacrifice scheme to help lower the cost of your nursery fees * Season Ticket Loan - to help with the cost of your rail/ bus journey, to & from work * Lease car salary sacrifice scheme allowing you to lease a brand new, greener car for three years. The monthly fee includes insurance, servicing and road tax For more information on this position please contact Ms Georgina Tully, the Principal Lawyer in the Team. Closing Date: 26th February 2024 Interview Date: To be confirmed Please note that the closing date is given as a guide. We reserve the right to close this vacancy once a sufficient number of applications has been received. Therefore, it is strongly advised that you complete and return your application as soon as possible to avoid disappointment

Job Summary

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