Public Counsel is the largest pro bono public interest law firm in the country. Founded in 1970, it is dedicated to advancing equal justice under law and addressing economic, racial, and other inequities by delivering free legal and social services to the most vulnerable members of our community. Public Counsel operates eight legal projects: Children’s Rights, Community Development, Consumer Rights, 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 130 and seeks to have a racially diverse workplace.
Public Counsel’s Homelessness Prevention Law Project (HPLP) serves individuals who are homeless or at high risk of becoming homeless. The Shriver Housing Project is a pilot project authorized under the Shriver Civil Counsel Act (AB 590) to demonstrate the benefits of providing counsel to clients in high-stakes civil litigation such as the possible loss of housing. Although not a pure civil Gideon project, the Shriver Housing Project assists thousands of unrepresented low-income litigants in unlawful detainer actions.
In addition to our homelessness prevention and anti-displacement efforts, our recent work includes:
- Supporting local tenants in their successful efforts to obtain an Eviction Moratorium ordinance.
- Teaming up with other non-profit legal services providers, tenant organizers and community-based organizations throughout Los Angeles County to push forward the implementation of a Right to Counsel for all tenants in eviction proceedings.
- Responding to federal attempts to rollback housing subsidies for immigrant families and fair housing protections.
The Paralegal will be a part of a team providing eviction defense and counsel and advice to tenants who reside in the area served by the Stanley Mosk Courthouse.
This is a full-time position that has the following responsibilities:
- Carry a high volume caseload that may include a mix of landlord-tenant counseling and eviction defense with attorney supervision;
- Provide support to Staff Attorneys and Supervising Attorney;
- Act as a resource for other Public Counsel staff and community partners;
- Coordinate grant reporting, billing, and outcome tracking for case work as directed by the Supervising Attorney;
- Perform various clerical duties such as record-keeping, document copying, e-Filing, etc.; and,
- Other duties as assigned.
Candidates must possess the following:
- Bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university and either: paralegal certificate/degree in paralegal studies from an ABA-approved institution OR bachelor's degree and at least 1 year of experience in litigation support, ideally in housing and/or community organizing;
- Comfort with practicing trauma-informed legal advocacy: empathy, responsive listening, restraint from judgment, and demonstration of authentic care and concern;
- Ability to work with and have sensitivity to individuals in crisis and at-risk of homelessness;
- Commitments to race equity and community-centered work, and willingness to incorporate race equity principles and community-centered approaches in practice;
- Experience with data collection and creating reports;
- 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; and
- Ability to commute throughout Los Angeles County.
- Ability to read, write and speak fluently in Spanish is preferred.
JOB TYPE AND BENEFITS
- Full-time, Exempt position
- 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
- Parking and transit benefits
Public Counsel VACCINATION POLICY
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. As of June 6, 2022, all employees with Public Counsel will be 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 Statement
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.