This is an unclassified position held at the pleasure of the Court. This position obtains background information from defendants to assist examiners in performing Competency to Stand Trial and Sanity at the Time of the Act evaluations. This individual will also perform Intervention in Lieu of Conviction and mental health evaluations requested by probation officers. This position is responsible for three primary functions: (1) Obtaining background information from defendants to assist the psychiatrists and psychologists with forensic evaluations; (2) Evaluating and rendering opinions and treatment recommendations regarding mental health and/or chemical dependency status of select defendants and/or probationers; and (3) Participation in staff meetings and continuing education conferences and workshops.
The individual in this position primarily works independently, determining the most effective manner to complete the assigned caseload within defined deadlines. Participation in regular group and individual supervision sessions with the Chief Social Worker or the Director of the Clinic is required in order to facilitate joint learning, review assessment and documentation issues, and provide ongoing evaluation of clinical practice. The Court and/or clinician performing the forensic evaluation require all work to be complete at least twenty-four (24) hours in advance of the court hearing and/or scheduled appointment with the defendant.
$54,384.20 - $56,934.02 (Commensurate with Experience)
Essential Duties and Responsibilities
- Interviewing defendants in order to obtain specific background information;
- Interviewing collateral sources;
- Reviewing appropriate treatment and collateral records (medical records, prior forensic reports, prosecutor’s files, etc.);
- Interviewing defendants in order to assess and render opinions regarding chemical dependency and mental health diagnoses and treatment recommendations;
- Summarizing and dictating social history, probation and Intervention in Lieu of Conviction reports and other reports in proper Court Psychiatric Clinic format;
- Administrative coverage in the absence of the Director;
- Performing a variety of other related duties as required (e.g. scheduling interviews, obtaining medical records via release forms, responding to telephone calls, writing letters, editing social history reports, etc.).
The above statements describe the general nature and level of work performed by individuals assigned to this classification. They are not an exhaustive list of all duties. Other duties may be assigned.
Knowledge, Qualifications, Skills, and Abilities
- Ability to integrate clinical and legal data;
- Excellent interpersonal skills and ability to communicate effectively, both orally and in writing, with Judges, staff, Court employees, outside agencies and the public; Effective oral and written communication and interviewing skills (e.g., ability to listen effectively, obtain sensitive and specific background information, ask appropriate follow-up questions, prepare accurate reports of information obtained);
- Ability to assess and make observations regarding a defendant’s behavior (e.g. facial expressions, movements, body language);
- Ability to develop rapport with defendants and other interviewees in order to obtain necessary information;
- Ability to diagnose and formulate mental health and substance abuse treatment recommendations;
- Familiarity with the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorder, 5th Ed.;
- Advanced knowledge of mental illness, chemical dependency, and developmental disability and an understanding of the impact of the foregoing on an individual’s behavior;
- Basic understanding of the operation of the Common Pleas Court in general and the criminal docket in particular;
- Providing informed consent and orienting defendants to the evaluation process;
- Effective time management, reliability and punctuality;
- Ability to maintain sensitive and confidential information;
- Ability to interact professionally on a regular basis with a diverse population within the Court’s jurisdiction, including people from many different geographic, socioeconomic, religious, racial and ethnic backgrounds;
- Professional appearance and demeanor at all times.
Education and Experience
REQUIRED: Master’s degree in the behavioral sciences, and a minimum of one (1) year of relevant work experience; Licensure (or receipt within one (1) year of hiring) as a Licensed Independent Social Worker (LISW) or Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor (LPCC) from the State of Ohio Counselor, Social Worker and Marriage & Family Therapist Board. A Psychology Assistant with an appropriate Master’s Degree also satisfies the educational requirement.
Physical Demands and Work Environment
The physical demands described here represent those an employee must meet to perform the essential functions of this job. The work environment characteristics described here represent those an employee encounters while performing the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.
This position primarily works in a normal office and court environment with no unusual demands or exposure to hazardous situations or materials, with occasional exposure to unstable defendants. However, security is available Frequent contact occurs with co-workers to discuss work-related issues (e.g. office assistants and/or transcriptionists to discuss typing deadlines, the clinician to discuss the case, other outside department personnel to provide information.) Frequent contact occurs with the defendant, the defendant’s family and friends, victims and witnesses to obtain information. Frequent contact also occurs with judges and probation officers to relay reports and/or opinions. Additional contact may occur with legal and other mental health professionals to share information. On occasion, court appearances may be necessary.
The normal hours of operation for the Court are from 8:30 AM to 4:30 PM, Monday through Friday. This position may require some work beyond normal Court hours, including evenings and weekends.
Applicants must submit a letter of interest and resume to:
Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Court
Gregory Popovich, Court Administrator
1200 Ontario Street
Justice Center 11th Floor
Cleveland, Ohio 44113
This position will remain open until filled. However, the process of resume review will begin November 26, 2018.
All applicants will receive notification of their application status. No phone calls or e-mails please. Reasonable accommodation may be available to qualified employees and applicants; please contact the Director of Human Resources for Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Court at 216-443-8560.
Equal Opportunity Employer – Smoke-Free and Drug-Free Workplace
Visit the Court’s website:
Cuyahoga County’s website:
Proof of education, licensure and employment references will be required before final interview. The Cuyahoga County Court of Common Pleas requires submission to a criminal history background check and drug testing prior to employment. The selected candidate must successfully complete a probationary period.
All applicants will receive notification of their application status. No phone calls or e-mails please. Reasonable accommodation is available to all employees and applicants. If you have a disability that needs accommodation, please contact the Director of Human Resources for Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Court at 216-443-8560.