ABOUT PUBLIC COUNSEL
Public Counsel is a nonprofit public interest law firm dedicated to advancing civil rights and racial and economic justice, as well as to amplifying the power of our clients through comprehensive legal advocacy. Founded on and strengthened by a pro bono legal service model, our staff and volunteers seek justice through direct legal services, promote healthy and resilient communities through education and outreach, and support community-led efforts to transform unjust systems through litigation and policy advocacy in and beyond Los Angeles.
Public Counsel operates eight legal projects: Children’s Rights, Community Development, Consumer Rights & Economic Justice, Homelessness Prevention, Immigrants’ Rights, Veterans’ Rights, the Audrey Irmas Project for Women & Girls’ Rights, and our impact litigation project, Opportunity Under Law.
Public Counsel has a full-time staff of over 150. We are committed to building a diverse staff and encourage applications from people of color, people with disabilities, and people of all gender identities, gender expressions, and sexualities.
ABOUT THE FEDERAL PRO SE CLINIC
Public Counsel’s Federal Pro Se Clinic provides high quality legal assistance to individuals litigating their federal, civil actions without legal representation in the federal district court for the Central District of California. Located at the Roybal Federal Building in downtown Los Angeles, the Clinic serves the needs of a growing population of pro se litigants. The Clinic also provides a setting to connect these litigants with volunteer law students and volunteer attorneys from major law firms. The Federal Pro Se Clinic is part of the Consumer Rights & Economic Justice project.
The Federal Pro Se Clinic is seeking a staff attorney who will be responsible for:
- Providing procedural and substantive legal advice in an in-person clinical setting to pro se litigants in federal actions;
- Reviewing and analyzing federal pleadings to assess the merits of actions brought by pro se litigants in the Central District in a variety of federal substantive areas (civil rights, employment, contract and tort matters, etc.);
- Preparing forms, guides, and instructional videos directed towards pro se litigants;
- Preparing court documents for and providing limited scope representation to selected low-income, pro se litigants in a variety of federal substantive areas (civil rights, employment, contract and tort matters, etc.);
- Supervising a legal assistant who works on-site at the Clinic and at Public Counsel’s main office;
- Recruiting, training, and supervising volunteer lawyers and law students at the Pro Se Clinic;
- Coordinating with Central District judges, court staff, and community partners to provide pro se services;
- Performing grant compliance duties such as maintaining detailed data and preparing reports;
- Working and coordinating with pro bono attorneys who are interested in representing or have agreed to represent pro se litigants; and
- Completing other duties as assigned.
ESSENTIAL JOB SKILLS AND ABILITIES
- J.D. and California Bar membership required. Specifically, the candidate must have:
- At least 1 year of legal experience;
- Experience and thorough familiarity with the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure and the Central District of California’s Local Rules;
- Comfortable preparing court documents and giving advice in fast paced clinical environment;
- Ability to interact effectively with individuals from highly diverse backgrounds and individuals experiencing trauma;
- Experience working in a clinical setting is preferred, but not required;
- Excellent oral, written communication, research and writing skills;
- Spanish language fluency preferred; and
- Prior federal clerkship highly desired.
JOB TYPE AND BENEFITS
- Full-time, Exempt position. Position is funded with a time-limited grant. Public Counsel seeks to renew the grant yearly
- Salary Range: The salary range for this position, $65,000-$93,000
- Public Counsel offers a competitive benefits package including:
- Medical, dental, and vision coverage with both HMO and PPO options,
- The option to enroll in a Flexible Spending Account,
- A 403(b) retirement plan with elective contribution and a discretionary employer contribution after a year of employment, and
- Employer-paid life insurance and disability plans.
- Generous paid time off and compensatory time up to 40 hours per calendar year
- On-site parking or public transportation reimbursement available
HOW TO APPLY
We value lived experiences and experiences working with clients across a range of settings. Please consider discussing such experiences in your cover letter, especially if they are not reflected in your resume.
PUBLIC COUNSEL VACCINATION POLICY AND COVID-19 PROTOCOLS
Public Counsel requires vaccination against COVID-19 for all employees, including new hires. Pursuant to federal and state laws, Public Counsel will provide reasonable accommodations to qualified employees with disabilities or sincerely held religious beliefs, unless doing so would pose an undue hardship.
Public Counsel is generally office-based, but remote work has been permitted during the pandemic. All employees with Public Counsel are required to work in the office at least one day per week, at the discretion of the head of department. This policy is subject to redesign by leadership. Public Counsel will work in a manner consistent with public health and local and state emergency orders.
PUBLIC COUNSEL EEO POLICY
Public Counsel is an Equal Opportunity Employer that does not discriminate against employees or prospective employees on the basis of union membership or activity, race, religious creed, religious observance, ethnicity, color, gender, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, genetic information or predisposition, military service, military and veteran status, pregnancy, child birth and related medical conditions, marital and family status, national origin, ancestry, age, medical conditions as defined by state or federal law, or disability, or any other basis prohibited by law.
All qualified applicants with criminal histories will be considered in a manner consistent with the requirements of the Los Angeles Fair Chance Initiative for Hiring.
Our leadership team is dedicated to this policy with respect to recruitment, hiring, placement, promotion, transfer, training, compensation, benefits, employee activities discipline, discharge and general treatment during employment.