On November 7, 2016, Julianne Allen, Senior Paralegal at Simas & Associates, Ltd., guest lectured at American River College.
The students were part of the Paralegal Program and the course was “Administrative Law and Procedure” taught by Julia Brynelson, Adjunct Professor.
“I was invited to speak and jumped at the chance,” explained Ms. Allen, the most senior employee at Simas & Associates, Ltd.
“The main topic was a review of the Administrative Procedure Act – pretty much the foundational area of the law for our law firm’s primary practice areas of administrative, health care, and professional licensing defense law.”
This was the second year that Ms. Allen was invited to lecture.
“In addition,” Ms. Allen continued, “I got to review the writ of administrative mandate process and how it works in conjunction with administrative hearing practice. More or less, the lecture was a comparison of the APA (Administrative Procedure Act) and writs to that in civil litigation and civil appeals.”
So much of working in the administrative legal arena is the identification, preparation, and presentation of the underlying record.
“This is called the administrative record,” explained Ms. Allen. “It is what the administrative law judge bases his or her proposed decision on, supplemented by any evidence/argument made on reconsideration or by way of a motion to augment the record. And much of that work is work conducted by the paralegal, as opposed to the attorney.”
“Knowledge of the process,” continued Ms. Allen, “can be a huge boon to the client. Many of the government agencies, at the state or municipal level, do not regularly deal with the preservation or presentation of the administrative record on review at the writ stage. And thus, dismissed evidence, pre-hearing rulings, or party communications can sometimes be incorporated into the record or arguably presented as part of the record for consideration in superior court. And doing so can be extremely advantageous to the client.”
Ms. Allen has been with Simas & Associates, Ltd. in the Sacramento Office since 2010. She has served as the lead paralegal on almost all of the law firm’s writ of mandate, civil litigation, business formation, and healthcare law cases.