Name: Clair R. Atkins
Location: Chicago, IL
What kind of work were you doing before litigation support found you?
I owned a computer services company in Atlanta. I taught computer classes (in-home and classroom), designed web sites, helped local businesses with their marketing efforts (menus, flyers, etc.), and provided hardware and software support to clients.
How did you get the opportunity to join the litigation support community?
I moved to Kansas City, Missouri to be closer to my family. I tried to keep my company going, but didn't have the capital. So, to pay the bills while I learned about my new town, I got a temp position with a service provider. My job was to print documents to hard copy and reassemble them, based on a list of Bates numbers. While doing this, I noticed that the computer I was using seemed sluggish. I investigated the issues and wrote a note (I didn't want to step on IT's toes) to let the company know what I had found. The next day, I got a call from the manager asking me if I wanted a full-time job as a final media technician.
When did you realize that this career would be a good fit for you?
The moment I was able to solve a challenge for a client and see the relief on my manager's face, I was hooked. Thankfully, in this industry, there are plenty of challenges to go around.
Do you prefer to be out in front and working with the clients or behind the scenes working with the technologies?
I love both! The technical side of me enjoys learning new technology and solving a good puzzle and the people side of me enjoys helping others.
Is there an area of litigation support that had a steep learning curve for you?
Coming from a technical background, I was not familiar with the legal industry at all. As a matter of fact, when I first started, I did not realize that there was an industry behind the documents, exhibits, and such (not sure who I thought did all of that). I do not necessarily think of it as a steep learning curve, but the terminology and documentation were definitely new to me and presented challenges along the way.
What do you consider to be one of the coolest things about working in litigation support?
So many things, but the coolest for me is being handed what seems like an impossible task and finding the solution.
Which types of employers have you had while working in litigation support?
- Law Firm
- Service Provider
Litigation Support is a well-paying career. How much has your salary increased since joining the litigation support community?
$50,000 – $70,000
How many years have you been working in Litigation Support?
Care to share any words of encouragement or advice?
Keep learning and share your knowledge with others. Sharing what you know is the path to helping others and helping yourself.
Don't forget your personal life! 🙂