What do Bailiffs Do?
The main responsibility of a bailiff is to keep order during court proceedings under the direction of supervisors and judges. After specific training and skills, the bailiff carries authority from a judge to execute orders, maintain safety and order, and uphold the law.
Bailiffs Skills and Abilities
As a bailiff, you will be required to have a thorough understanding of public safety and law in order to correctly execute your job. You should be able to follow policies and procedures exactly, uphold court procedures and any laws or codes that are relevant to your tasks. You must have leadership skills and be able to listen actively, watching for reactions and avoiding potential problems. You may be required to carry a firearm to effectively protect court employees and civilians. Great communication skills are also necessary to convey instructions and keep order.
Some of the most common duties you will be required to complete as a bailiff involve maintaining security in a courthouse or courtroom. This means you will be required to check any persons for weapons or prohibited items using specific tools. You will patrol around the inside and outside of the building, as well as make sure all court employees are escorted safely to their destinations. Here are some other responsibilities of a bailiff:
- Make sure the court docket is in order.
- Notify courtroom attendees upon the arrival of the judge.
- Patrol and guard all jury personnel during a trial and sequestering from outside influences.
- Keep custody of prisoners while travelling to and from courthouse.
- Cooperate with others to maintain constructive relationships.
- Make arrests if necessary.
- Collect and analyze data received from databases or persons, and use critical thinking skills to make decisions based on that data.
Bailiffs Tools and Technology
You will be required to use several tools to maintain safety and complete tasks in the courtroom. Magnetometers and other metal detective devices will be used to detect any firearms or weapons on persons entering the building. You may also be asked to use breathalyzer units to detect inebriation. During a trial, you will be responsible for running DVD players and recorders. For the records part of your job, you will be required to use software to maintain the court docket, as well as query programs to look up cases, statistics, and crime information.
Education and Training for Bailiffs
The highest percentage of bailiffs have at least a high school diploma, with many completing some college. If you want to take courses before entering this field, criminal justice and political science courses are great to have on your resume when finding employment. Once you get hired, there is a moderate length training period to learn necessary skills to complete your duties. For those who will carry firearms, concealed carry license courses must be completed, as well.
Your salary as a bailiff can range greatly. Those in the bottom 10% make just below $10 an hour. The median wage is $18 an hour, and the top 10% make more than $34 an hour. The more education and experience you have, the more likely you’ll get higher pay. Some states pay higher rates, giving you the potential to earn more than $45 an hour. New York, Nebraska and Iowa pay the most per hour, while Georgia and South Carolina pay the lowest.
Bailiffs Jobs by Geography
With a 5% expected increase across the nation, job availability for bailiffs or those looking to get into the field is on the rise. There are approximately 17,000 jobs available across the country. Florida, Georgia, Ohio and New York take the bulk of those jobs. To determine the right place for you, always take into consideration these factors.