An online survey in October 2005 by the Esquire Group found among 10 Twin Cities law firms that five had adopted the title “Legal Administrative Assistant.” That title (LAA) could be a contender in law departments (See my post of May 17, 2006 on whither the term “secretary.”).
One law firm referred to all its support staff as either “paralegals” or “administrative paralegals” depending on the ratio of client versus firm work which they performed (See my post of April 23, 2006 on the 4:1 ratio of lawyers to LAA (fka secretaries).). These titles could find a counterpart distinction in law departments that turns on degree an individual supports clients compared to the department. A file clerk or IP analyst would be an “administrative paralegal” because they help the law department keep ticking, but not specific clients. I suspect the distinction falls apart, however, in most law departments.