Legal Assistant - Federal Pro Se Clinic - Consumer Rights & Economic Justice Project
Los Angeles, CA Consumer Rights & Economic Justice
Job Type
Full-time
Description

     

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 Gender Justice Project, 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 people litigating cases in the federal district court in Los Angeles. 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 attorneys from major law firms. Public Counsel also takes certain meritorious cases for full representation or placement with pro bono counsel. The Federal Pro Se Clinic is part of the Consumer Rights & Economic Justice project.

 

JOB SUMMARY


This is an entry-level position that will commence on or after July 15, 2024.

Reporting to the Supervising Staff Attorney, the new Legal Assistant will:

  • Conduct preliminary intake interviews and gather relevant documents and information under the supervision of an attorney;
  • Coordinate client appointments and volunteer attorney schedules at the Federal Pro Se Clinic;
  • Provide support to Staff Attorney and Supervising Staff Attorney;
  • Maintain client case files, complete data entry, and monitor outcome tracking for the Clinic;
  • Assist with the development of informational materials;
  • Perform various clerical duties such as record-keeping, document copying, e-filing, etc.;
  • Work closely with pro se litigants, staff, and volunteer attorneys on public benefits, civil rights, and other cases; and,
  • Complete other duties as assigned.
Requirements

     

ESSENTIAL JOB SKILLS AND ABILITIES

  • Bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university;
  • Comfortable working in a clinical setting and under pressure;
  • Ability to empathize and work with clients, attorneys, and court officials of diverse backgrounds;
  • Work well as part of a team, but also be able to work independently;
  • Strong written and oral communication skills; 
  • Detail-oriented and superior organizational skills; 
  • Comfortable preparing and analyzing basic statistics;
  • Familiarity working with Word, Excel, and PowerPoint;
  • Ability to commute downtown and to the mid-Wilshire area; and
  • Strong oral and written communication skills (Spanish-language fluency strongly preferred)


JOB TYPE AND BENEFITS

  • Job Type: Full-time, Non-Exempt
  • Bargaining
  • Probationary Period: 6 months 
  • Fixed-duration position funded until September 30, 2024. This position is created with designated funds through September 30, 2024. Continued employment past this date is contingent on additional funding for this position. We expect that in August 2024 the funder will extend the funding for this position through September 30, 2025. 

Public Counsel offers a competitive benefits package including:

  • Salary Range: The salary range is $53,000-$55,932. DOE.   
  • Medical coverage with an option for 100% employer-paid employee and dependent child(ren)’s premiums; buy-up options are available for other HMO and PPO coverage 
  • Dental and vision coverage 
  • Option to enroll in a Flexible Spending Account
  • 403(b) retirement plan with an elective employee contribution, and after a year of employment a discretionary employer contribution 
  • Employer-paid life insurance and disability plans

Generous paid time off (per year):

  • 15 accrued vacation days that increase to 20 days after 3 years of employment
  • 12 accrued sick days that may be used for physical and mental health needs
  • 2 personal observance days 
  • 11 paid holidays plus 2 one-week office closures (during the summer and winter)
  • Up to 60 hours of compensatory time per calendar year (for exempt staff only)

Additional benefits:

  • 37.5 hour work week for all full-time employees 
  • Free on-site parking or public transportation reimbursement 
  • $45 per pay period for employees who use non-English language skills to perform work duties
  • Up to 6 months of parental leave 
  • Organizational and team wellness activities to build team cohesion and camaraderie
  • Professional development support and opportunities 

 

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. Some positions require additional in-office days. 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.