Labor Relations Counsel Series
California State Personnel Board Specification
Series established November 4, 1982
This series specification describes four legal classes utilized to provide specialized legal services in the Department of Personnel Administration.
Incumbents in these classes are used to perform a wide variety of legal work concerned with the preparation and trial of cases representing the Governor, the Department of Personnel Administration, and all State departments before the Public Employment Relations Board, the State Personnel Board, and the State and Federal courts on confidential matters involving State employer-employee relations and non-merit aspects of the State's personnel system; prepare and present briefs in Federal and State appellate courts; provide legal advice and opinions to these entities regarding such matters; represent these entities in grievance-arbitration hearings based on negotiated contracts; negotiate settlements; draft and analyze legislation and appear before the Legislature regarding labor relations and non-merit personnel matters; draft rules and regulations governing all matters administered by the Department of Personnel Administration; may act as a hearing officer and write decisions in administrative hearings conducted by the Department to resolve non-merit personnel issues; prepare correspondence and reports; serve in a lead capacity over lower level attorneys or other technical and clerical staff; and to do other related work.
Labor Relations Counsel Series Specification - Class Titles and Codes
|Schem Code ||Class Code ||Class |
|OH70 ||6092 ||Labor Relations Counsel I |
|OH75 ||6093 ||Labor Relations Counsel II |
|OH80 ||6094 ||Labor Relations Counsel III |
|OH85 ||6147 ||Labor Relations Counsel IV |
This series is available for use only within the Department of Personnel Administration.
Entry into this series is typically from the class of Legal Counsel which requires membership in The State Bar of California. The class of Graduate Legal Assistant, which requires eligibility to take The California State Bar examination, may also be used to recruit those interested in entry into this series.
Definition of Levels
Classes in this series generally perform similar duties. Differences between levels are determined primarily by differences in (1) the level of difficulty of the assignments given to the incumbent, (2) the degree of independence with which the incumbent performs, (3) the expertise which the incumbent brings to those assignments, and (4) the value of the services rendered by the incumbent to the Department and to State service.
Labor Relations Counsel I
Incumbents in this class are experienced working-level attorneys capable of performing difficult legal work with increased independence and responsibility. They are given increasingly complex assignments. They are expected to work independently on legal issues of average difficulty including drafting and analysis of legislation and regulations, research, and writing of legal opinions. They may act as an advocate or hearing officer in hearings, arbitrations, and litigation involving departments with labor relations problems of average difficulty, and assist in the presentation of difficult cases. Under the direction of a higher level attorney, they may be assigned to more difficult problems.
Labor Relations Counsel II
Incumbents in this class are experienced journey-level attorneys who have demonstrated the capacity to benefit from increased independence and responsibility and who have demonstrated their ability to perform more difficult legal work. They are assigned more complex and sensitive legal issues, opinions, arbitrations, and court litigation involving generally larger departments with difficult labor relations problems. They are assigned to lengthy and complex hearings or trials which require polished litigation skills. They work with and advise the Department staff on major, complex, and sensitive labor relations and non-merit personnel matters.
Labor Relations Counsel III
Incumbents in this class are well experienced advanced or full journey-level attorneys who have developed expertise in labor law, personnel law, administrative law, and civil litigation. They have demonstrated the ability to capably perform the most complex and sensitive legal work of the Department of Personnel Administration on an independent basis. A Labor Relations Counsel III conducts appellate litigation which involves a high degree of importance and complexity. They work with broad discretion and minimal supervision on matters of the greatest difficulty and handle lengthy hearings and litigation. They work with and advise the Department staff and Director on labor relations and non-merit personnel matters of the greatest difficulty. They may act as a leadperson in coordinating the work of other attorneys.
Labor Relations Counsel IV
Incumbents in this class are the most experienced expert/consultant attorneys in labor, personnel and administrative law, and civil litigation. They have demonstrated the ability to independently and effectively perform assignments consisting of the most complex and sensitive legal work of the Department of Personnel Administration, and to consistently produce favorable results. They work with broad discretion on matters of the greatest difficulty and handle the most lengthy hearings, trials, and cases likely to be appealed to the highest courts. They independently conduct appellate court proceedings and litigation which involve the highest degree of economic impact, importance, and complexity. They may lead or supervise others as an attorney in charge of specific complex, sensitive cases involving teams of attorneys.
All classes require active membership in The California State Bar. (Applicants who are not members of The California State Bar but who are eligible to take the California State Bar examination or are in their final year of law school will be admitted to the examination but will not be considered eligible for appointment until they are admitted to The State Bar.)
Labor Relations Counsel I
Two years of responsible experience in the practice of law*, of which one year and six months must be in labor law and include administrative or civil litigation experience. (Applicants who have completed one year and six months of the required experience will be admitted to the examination but must complete two years of such experience before they will be eligible for appointment.)
Labor Relations Counsel II
Four years of responsible experience in the practice of law*, of which three years must be in labor law and include administrative or civil litigation experience. (Applicants who have completed three years and six months of the required experience will be admitted to the examination, but must complete four years of such experience before they will be eligible for appointment.)
Labor Relations Counsel III
Six years of responsible experience in the practice of law*, of which five years must be in labor law and include administrative or civil litigation. (Applicants who have completed five years and six months of the required experience will be admitted to the examination, but must complete six years of such experience before they will be eligible for appointment.)
Labor Relations Counsel IV
Ten years of broad and extensive experience in the practice of law*, of which seven years must be in labor law and include administrative or civil litigation experience. (Applicants who have completed nine years and six months of the required experience will be admitted to the examination, but must complete six years of such experience before they will be eligible for appointment.)
Knowledge and Abilities
Knowledge of: Legal principles and their applications; legal research methods; administrative law, and the conduct of proceedings before administrative bodies; scope, character, and principles of California statutory law, provisions of the California Constitution, administrative regulations, and case law authorities administered or enforced by the Department of Personnel Administration; principles of labor law, personnel law, administrative law, and civil litigation; rules of evidence and conduct of proceedings in trial and appellate courts of California and the United States and before administrative bodies; obligations of public officials and administrative boards and agencies; and duties and powers of the Department of Personnel Administration.
Ability to: Analyze legal principles and precedents and apply them to complex legal and administrative problems; perform and direct legal research; present statements of facts, law, and argument clearly and logically in written and oral form; draft opinions, pleadings, rules, regulations, and legislation; negotiate effectively; recognize the special problems of employer-employee relations; independently present difficult and complex cases before administrative bodies and trial and appellate courts; draft proposed legislation and administrative regulations; handle difficult legal correspondence; analyze situations accurately and adopt an effective course of action; direct the work of clerical staff, professional assistants, and lower level attorneys; and effectively carry out the Department's Equal Employment Opportunity Program.
A greater degree of these knowledge and abilities is required at each higher level.
Additional Desirable Qualifications
Experience in State or public sector employer-employee relations law.
Labor Relations Counsel Series History - Dates Established, Revised, and Title Changed
|Class ||Date Established ||Date Revised ||Title Changed |
|Labor Relations Counsel I ||11/04/1982 ||04/24/2012 ||-- |
|Labor Relations Counsel II ||11/04/1982 ||04/24/2012 ||-- |
|Labor Relations Counsel III ||11/04/1982 ||04/24/2012 ||-- |
|Labor Relations Counsel IV ||09/21/1993 ||04/24/2012 ||-- |
* Experience in the "practice of law" or "performing legal duties" is defined as: (1) only that legal experience acquired after admission to any State Bar, or (2) experience as a judicial clerk for a federal court, California's state courts, or any other state's court, to constitute experience in the practice of law. For an individual's judicial clerkship to qualify as experience in the �practice of law� or �performing legal duties�, the experience must have been gained after receipt of a Juris Doctor or equivalent degree.