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Job Details

Staff Attorney

Company name
Orange County Employees Retirement System

2 yrs required

Santa Ana, CA, United States

Employment Type


Posted on
Sep 07,2019

Apply for this job


Established in 1945, the Orange County Employees Retirement System (OCERS) provides retirement, death, disability and cost-of living benefits to retirees of the County of Orange and certain County districts. Serving approximately 43,000 members, OCERS is governed by a ten-member Board of Retirement that is responsible for managing a $15.7 billion dollar fund. For more information about OCERS, please click here.
OCERS' mission is to provide secure retirement and disability benefits with the highest standards of excellence.
OCERS vision is to be a trusted partner providing premier pension administration, distinguished by consistent, quality member experiences and prudent financial stewardship.

* Open and Transparent
* Commitment to Superior Service
* Engaged and Dedicated Workforce
* Reliable and Accurate
* Secure and Sustainable

The Staff Attorney reports directly to the General Counsel and is expected to uphold the highest standards of accountability, plan sponsor focus, and system efficiency. The incumbent works within general instructions and guidelines, exercising discretion and independent judgment in the performance of duties.

Under general direction of the General Counsel:

  1. Interprets and provides advice and counsel to OCERS staff on the application of retirement and other laws applicable to the administration of a county pension system; and
  2. Represents OCERS in administrative hearings and state court writ proceedings arising from appeals of disability retirement determinations, benefit calculation issues, and other issues involving the administration of retirement benefits by OCERS.

Ideal Candidate:
The ideal candidate will possess the knowledge, attributes and qualities to be successful in a professional setting. Performance attributes of the ideal candidate include, but are not limited to the following:

  • Researches, interprets and advises OCERS staff with respect to the County Employees Retirement Law of 1937, Open Meetings Laws, the California Public Records Act, community property and family law, and other laws applicable to the administration of a public pension fund and local public agency.
  • Reviews administrative records, evaluates evidence and determines the best method for presenting the matter at hearing; participates in pre-hearing conferences; prepares briefs and other legal documentation; interacts with staff in the course of handling the administrative appeals.
  •  Conducts administrative hearings, which entails presentation of documentary and testimonial evidence, lodging relevant objections, arguing pertinent legal issues and complying with briefing schedules. 
  • Represents OCERS in state writ proceedings when administrative hearings result in the filing of a Petition for Writ of Mandate.
  • Reviews and advises OCERS staff in connection with family law documents including Domestic Relations Orders, Child Support Orders, Judgments of Dissolution, Property Settlements and Powers of Attorney.
  • Confers with and provides legal advice to OCERS' employees on legal questions; prepares formal opinions as to the interpretation of the laws governing OCERS.
  • Works with and provides legal advice to OCERS internal auditors on issues relating to the interpretation of the laws governing OCERS and employers participating in the OCERS plan.
  • Prepares, reviews and advises in connection with contracts, leases, and other legal documents.
  • Monitors state and federal legislation affecting OCERS and OCERS' operations, and assists in preparing legislative updates to the OCERS Board of Retirement.
  • Monitors securities litigation in which OCERS is a participant, assists with ensuring claims are filed in securities litigation cases in which OCERS has suffered investment losses, and assists in preparing quarterly reports on these matters to the OCERS Investment Committee.
  • Performs a wide variety of legal research.

Minimum qualifications required for entry into the classification

Education and Experience
 Must have a Juris Doctor degree from an accredited U.S. law school;
Two years of post-bar experience providing legal advice to clients.

Special Notes, Licenses or Requirements:

  • Active membership in the State Bar of California and in good standing.
  • Compliance with continuing legal educational requirements of the State Bar of California.
  • A valid California class C driver's license or the ability to arrange necessary and timely transportation for field travel.
  • May be required to use personal vehicle.
  • A complete background investigation is required; a felony or misdemeanor conviction may be a disqualifying factor from employment.

The Knowledge, Skills and Abilities necessary to perform essential duties of the position include:

Knowledge of:

  • The 1937 County Employees Retirement Law, Open Meetings Laws, the California Public Records Act, community property and family law, and other statutes governing OCERS.
  • The organization, powers and limitations of county government.
  • The California Constitution.
  • Legal research methods and application of legal principles.
  • Telephone, office, and online etiquette.
  • Computer applications and hardware related to the performance of the essential functions of the job.

Skills/Ability to:

  • Analyze legal problems and apply legal principles and practices.
  • Present statements of fact, law and analyses clearly, effectively and logically in written and oral form.
  • Effectively perform legal research.
  • Perform job functions independently and in an ethical and objective manner.
  • Establish and maintain professional relationships with all levels of management, staff, consultants, retirement system members, and others, encountered in the course of work.
  • Maintain a professional demeanor in situations that require a high degree of sensitivity, tact, and diplomacy.
  • Work cooperatively with others.
  • Conduct comprehensive and analytical reviews of medical records.
  • Understand and communicate complex medical and legal concepts.
  • Demonstrate strict confidentiality, professionalism, integrity, and compliance with applicable laws and regulations at all times.
  • Use standard office equipment such as: computer, printer, scanner, fax machine, and photocopier.

Company info

Orange County Employees Retirement System

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