For over 50 years, Legal Aid Chicago has provided free civil legal assistance to people living in poverty in metropolitan Chicago. Each year our attorneys, volunteers, and staff help resolve civil legal problems, including domestic violence, consumer fraud, and unfair evictions. Legal Aid Chicago was founded on the philosophy that all individuals are entitled to quality civil legal representation, regardless of their income. We work to ensure that poverty is not an impediment to justice by dismantling the legal barriers that perpetuate inequality. Legal Aid Chicago staff live our mission through our core values of equity, excellence, inclusion, kindness, and respect.
Position: Legal Aid Chicago seeks a full-time staff attorney in our Immigrants and Workers’ Rights Practice Group (IWR). IWR includes the areas of employment, immigration, migrant farmworker, and human trafficking law and these four teams work both independently and in an interdisciplinary manner when these areas of law intersect. The attorney will work in IWR’s Immigration Law team, which provides legal services to immigrants, through intake, advice, brief services and full representation for a variety of immigration applications. The attorney will work in all of these areas, and will provide representation in the areas of U and T visas, VAWA petitions, asylum, naturalization, outreach and screening for new arrivals from the border.
- Manage a caseload and provide full and effective legal representation to individuals
- Represent clients in applications before USCIS
- Maintain and grow competence in the different areas of Immigration law that the team practices
- Interview eligible clients on issues handled within the practice group and provide advice and brief service in appropriate cases
- Participate in weekly team meetings to present new cases and reach team consensus on representation
- Work with other IWR staff members in any interdisciplinary work
- Participate in complex litigation or advocacy to address systemic issues
- Work collaboratively with Legal Aid Chicago staff, students, and volunteers to provide comprehensive legal services
- Maintain knowledge in other areas of law handled by Legal Aid Chicago to ensure that clients’ legal needs are identified and met in those areas
- Maintain case files and timely and accurate timekeeping in electronic case management system
- Assist with grant reporting, as appropriate and applicable
- Conduct community education and outreach and build relationships with community partners in poverty fighting efforts
- Collaborate on projects that could involve outreach to community groups, developing new strategies for serving our clients, or address systemic issues through litigation, negotiation or advocacy
- Participate in training to agencies, advocates, clients, or community groups about legal services and rights impacting low income persons and other vulnerable persons
- Participate in other activities related to poverty law including publication, permissible legislative and administrative advocacy, media relations, and fundraising as needed
- Handle other duties as determined by the Supervisory Attorney and the Director.
Salary: Commensurate with experience. Legal Aid Chicago offers a comprehensive benefits package, including low-cost employer-paid health plan options, employer-provided group life and long-term disability insurance, fitness center access, generous paid time off, and much more.
- Applicants must be licensed to practice law in Illinois or in another state
- Experience in Immigration Law preferred
- The successful applicant will be collegial and demonstrate a commitment to and experience with our client communities and/or people living in poverty, and applicants are encouraged to share that experience in their cover letter
- Applicants must have strong oral and written communication skills, strong organizational skills, and the ability to work well under pressure
- The ideal candidate will have strong client counseling skills and be someone who genuinely enjoys interacting with clients
- The successful applicant will be collegial and committed to working as part of a highly collegial team
- Spanish proficiency required
Cover letter, resume, writing sample, and the contact information for two professional references are required to apply.
Legal Aid Chicago is firmly committed to creating a diverse workplace and is proud to provide equal employment opportunities to all applicants and therefore does not discriminate on the basis of creed, color, national origin, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, age religion, marital or parental status, alienage, disability, political affiliation or belief, military or military discharge status, or ex-offender status. Applicants who have experiences with our client communities are encouraged to apply.