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Open positions at the National Immigrant Justice Center:

Director Level Positions:

Director of Strategy and Programs

Senior Attorney & Non-Attorney Positions:

Policy Analyst, State & Local

Project Manager

Senior Attorney, Asylum Project - Afghan Response

Senior Attorney - Detention Project

Senior Litigation Attorney

Supervising Attorney - Immigrant Children's Protection Project

Staff Attorney Positions:

Staff Attorney, Asylum Project - Afghan Response

Staff Attorney, Asylum Project - Pro Bono

Staff Attorney - Detention Project

Staff Attorney - Immigrant Children's Protection Project (Chicago)

Staff Attorney - Immigrant Legal Defense Project

Staff Attorney - LGBTQ Project

Coordinator Positions:

Pro Bono Coordinator - Asylum Project

Pro Bono Coordinator - LGBTQ Immigrant Rights Initiative

Litigation Project Coordinator

Paralegal Positions:

Paralegal - Adult Detention Project

Paralegal - Goshen Office

Paralegal - Immigrant Children's Protection Project

Paralegal - Immigrant Legal Defense Project, Counter-Trafficking Team

Paralegal - Indianapolis Office

Internships & Fellowships:

Internships

 

 

 

Director of Strategy and Programs

The Director of Strategy and Programs will be a member of NIJC’s Senior Management team, reporting to the Executive Director. The Director of Strategy and Programs will manage and coordinate NIJC’s legal service programs, providing strategic leadership, vision, and assessment of NIJC’s programs on a local, regional and national level. The Director of Strategy and Programs will ensure current and future programs are consistent with NIJC’s strategic plan and goals. The ideal candidate is an individual with management experience, an effective communicator and adaptable. The candidate should also demonstrate an ability to build teams, and identify priorities and coordinate strategies across projects and innovate on new projects. The Director of Strategy and Programs will institute best practices in recruiting and hiring and foster professional development among NIJC staff members. The Director of Strategy and Programs will collaborate and support a vision for the most efficient and effective implementation of its legal programs to advance NIJC’s mission.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities: 

Strategy, Leadership, and Management  

(40% of time)

  • Provide strategic leadership and implementation of NIJC’s mission and strategic plan.
  • Develop measurable metrics consistent with NIJC’s strategic plan.
  • Develop a 3- year growth plan for NIJC’s legal services programs, including NIJC’s position in the field, impact, staffing, and budget necessary to achieve.
  • Manage legal services directors and associate directors to build their teams and retain high-performing staff.
  • Identify key legal issues and NIJC’s role in advancing those issues.  
  • Liaise with and coordinate strategic growth among all NIJC projects, including litigation, policy, and communications.  
  • Ensure NIJC’s continued growth and success and to enhance NIJC’s reputation and opportunities for collaboration with community partners, pro bono attorneys, funders and other stakeholders.
  • Develop staffing infrastructure and plan to support growth.
  • Coordinate launch of new legal programs or initiatives.     

Operations

(20% of time)

  • Work with the Executive Director, COO and budget team in the allocation of resources and the development, implementation, and monitoring of programs, in accordance with strategic priorities that will enable NIJC to remain a leader in its field.
  • Evaluate NIJC’s legal services, identify new ways of executing priorities, recommend changes to drive business process improvement using an innovative approach. 
  • Support project leaders to identify opportunities to work together, create connections and use a collaborative approach to build teams and grow NIJC’s offerings.
  • Work with directors and associate directors to ensure quality and creativity in NIJC legal programs and ensure that each project’s qualitative and quantitative measurements are implemented and met Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) in NIJC legal programs and in our contracts and grants.
  • Work with the pro bono manager to assess NIJC’s pro bono processes, identify issues and propose solutions to same. 
  • Work with COO and NIJC’s technology staff to identify technologies that can improve NIJC’s legal programs, providing recommendations for adjustments to improve service delivery.
  • Provide leadership and direction for prioritizing programming and resources in accordance with NIJC’s long term goals.
  • Identify and evaluate opportunities to deliver recommendations on what NIJC needs to prioritize.
  • Write and present reports weekly to the Executive Director.
  • Present to NIJC Leadership Board on new initiatives or changes in NIJC’s priorities. 

Performance Management

(20% of time)

  • Support directors and associate directors to develop and meet KPIs, measurement and evaluation, including metrics to track progress.
  • Encourage trust and passion for improving NIJC’s systems and processes responsive to the internal and external environment by demonstrating leadership and communicating a vision that leads to organizational excellence.  
  • Build a positive culture across teams that allows for the introduction of new processes or services and the winding down of services that are no longer responsive to the needs of the community and/or NIJC priorities.   
  • Identify training opportunities, professional growth and retention strategies for team members.
  • Manage, develop, coach and train supervisees on managing their projects  

External Relations and Advocacy

(20% of time)

  • Identify areas for NIJC to collaborate and opportunities to strengthen NIJC’s reputation.   
  • Support the drafting of concept notes, proposals and reports.  
  • Serve as a spokesperson and champion for NIJC’s legal programs, promoting NIJC and making tough decisions to maintain NIJC’s position as a leader in the immigrant rights movement.
  • Coordinate and collaborate closely with NIJC’s Policy, Communications and Litigation teams to ensure alignment of vision and goals.

Competencies include:

  • Strong leadership skills, including in the areas of strategic planning and business processes, preferably with experience overseeing legal programs
  • Experienced manager of people, including demonstrated strength managing performance evaluation  
  • Experience achieving results within a climate of change, where external forces remain uncertain and where stakeholders may have conflicting objectives
  • Exceptional communicator, ability to work with a diverse, talented group of legal professionals to build trust, collaboration, and a culture that welcomes change
  • Demonstrated strength in managing and resolving conflict
  • Subscribes to NIJC values of advancing due process and human rights protections for immigrants and refugees
  • Experience balancing long-term strategic vision with short-term implementation, taking into account funding limitations
  • Experience seeing the big picture, planning for growth and having a vision to achieve operational efficiency along the way, while overseeing and supporting details of implementation.
  • Strong financial acumen and ability to assess projects  
  • Knowledge of the law, particularly immigration, civil rights, and human rights law is preferred
  • Commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion; ability to develop and implement creative innovations to advance anti-racist approaches in the workplace
  • Exceptional verbal and written communication skills and experience in grant writing and reporting
  • Demonstrated skill in maintaining the balance between running a successful business operation and maintaining a strong mission focus as a nonprofit organization

Qualifications:

To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • Education: Advanced degree (JD or MBA) preferred
  • Experience: Five to 10 years of leadership experience, including experience working with an executive director and senior management team to achieve goals
    • Proven experience building teams and strengthening organizational leadership
    • Experience in organizational change management
    • Legal experience preferred, particularly immigration law experience
  • Computer Skills: Proficiency with Microsoft Office Suite.
  • Reasoning Ability: Excellent analytical skills required.

Apply for the Director of Strategy and Programs position on Heartland Alliance's Job Board. 

 

 

 

 

Policy Analyst, State & Local

The State & Local Policy Analyst is the public face of NIJC’s state and local policy work to advance the human rights of immigrants. The Policy Analyst represents NIJC in coalitions and community engagements at the state and local level and engages in coalition building with community partners/grassroots organizations and education with state and local officials to advance pro-immigrant policies. The Policy Analyst will work across NIJC’s policy, communications, litigation and direct service teams to be responsive to community needs and advocacy priorities.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:  

  • Work with NIJC’s policy, litigation, direct service, and communications teams to identify advocacy priorities and strategies to protect the rights of immigrants, particularly at the state and local levels.
  • Analyze laws and policies and collaborate with grassroots groups, advocacy groups, and legal aid organizations in Chicago, Cook County, Illinois, and other Midwest states to identify common priorities and strategies to protect those who are targets of immigration enforcement, detention and deportation.
  • Participate in formal and informal coalitions of legal aid and advocacy organizations to advocate for policy reform; draft and edit statements, reports, sign-on letters, and other jointly-produced products.
  • Gather data and engage in policy and legal research as necessary to support advocacy and educational materials on emerging policy issues. Draft fact sheets, reports, etc. regarding state and local legislation/policies as it relates to immigrants.
  • Represent NIJC in regular Chicago Legal Protection Fund meetings and work with NIJC’s legal teams to advance legal protections.
  • Assist in identifying and working with NIJC clients and former clients who are interested in working with NIJC's communications and policy teams to advance proposed reforms.
  • Collaborate with community-based partners and NIJC litigation and legal services teams to advocate for state and local legislation/policies and monitor implementation of immigration policies, legal settlements, and recent state-wide legislation. Develop and implement advocacy strategies around accountability measures for non-compliance.
  • Collaborate with the policy, legal services and communications team to jointly lead NIJC’s support for local campaigns to close immigration detention facilities, secure the release of individuals in ICE custody, and advance fully funded universal representation programming for immigrants facing immigration court proceedings in Illinois.
  • Serve as point of contact for members of the Illinois General Assembly, Cook County board members, City of Chicago Alderpersons, and other local and state officials.
  • Provide community presentations on state and local legislation.
  • Represent NIJC and its priorities at external meetings and identify ways to effectively communicate NIJC’s policy recommendations to community partners and policy makers.
  • Participate in grant proposal development, editing, review and submission.
  • Closely monitor legal, policy, and political developments with regard to immigration detention and enforcement and create and implement rapid response advocacy strategies when necessary.
  • Other tasks as assigned.

Qualifications:  To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform these essential functions. 

  • Education and/or Experience:  Minimum of two years of related professional experience; law degree or other graduate degree preferred.
  • Language Skills:  Ability to read, analyze, and interpret regulations, legislation, including immigration laws and regulations, legal memos, case law and related materials. Spanish language abilities preferred.
  • Understanding of Immigration Law and Policy:  Previous experience with immigration law and/or policy is preferred.
  • Reasoning, Other Skills and Abilities:   Experience making public presentations and preparing and delivering testimony to committees of the government. Experience creating persuasive written documents for external consumption. Experience analyzing the complex policy arena and crafting appropriate responses.

Apply for the State & Local Policy Analyst position on Heartland Alliance's Job Board. 

 

 

 

 

Project Manager

NIJC seeks a project manager to oversee some of its initiatives, including its Universal Representation Pilot Project, a new legal services initiative for detained immigrants facing removal proceedings in the Chicago Immigration Court. This project is a collaborative with four organizations and will require a person who is highly organized, a strong communicator and committed to advancing immigrant rights. NIJC is also identifying new initiatives and this position will manage those projects as they evolve. 

NIJC seeks an experienced project manager with expertise in overseeing a project with multiple partners.  Applicants need to demonstrate commitment to immigrant and civil rights, and prior work with various stakeholders.  Experience in tracking metrics and creating systems that would support the project will be essential.  

An approximate division of work is as follows:

  • Develop MOUs with project partners and follow up regarding deliverables and compliance with grant commitments. The project manager will be responsible for ensuring clear MOUs with project partners, setting forth agreed upon deliverables and funding, if applicable
  • Monitor project implementation and progress towards meeting goals. The project manager will monitor and regularly evaluate the project and NIJC and partner’s progress.
  • Identify challenges and propose recommendations for project improvement. The project manager will identify any implementation challenges and coordinate with the Associate Director to address any issues.
  • Oversee budget. The project manager with work with the Associate Director/Director and accounting to track actual costs versus budget, forecast expenses, and request any budget revisions, including staffing, as appropriate
  • Serve as the point of contact with outside evaluation team.  The project manager will provide information to the evaluation team and ensure systems for tracking.  The manager will also review any written materials
  • Collaborate with communications team.  The project manager will work with the communications team to publish successes, including press releases and reports, and will coordinate with any participants who engage in media opportunities.
  •  Coordinate with the development team.  The project manager will work with the development team on any reporting an also work to create the documents necessary for broader funding.
  • Maintain an ongoing partnership with the members of the collaborative. The project manager will coordinate regular meetings with members of the collaborative
  • Develop systems. Specific systems will be designed and implemented to ensure the reporting of programmatic outcomes, summarizing data results and sharing of information
  • Coordinate within NIJC and across organizations. Work closely with other managers and coordinate with teammates engaged in assigned projects, collaborate with other organizations, and potential funders

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Collaborate with partners
  • Develop systems to track outcomes/information
  • Oversee the effective operations of the grant
  • Implement system to ensure consistency for reporting
  • Draft reports
  • Ensure strong communication
  • Coordinate within NIJC
  • Organize and set meeting agendas
  • Report on outcomes
  • Prepare funder reports with the assistance of NIJC’s development team
  • Work closely with associate director of detention
  • Identify trends and emerging issues
  • Ensure compliance with programmatic initiatives
  • Advance an anti-racist organization that promotes diversity, equity and inclusion
  • React to change productively and handle other essential duties as assigned

Apply for the Project Manager position on Heartland Alliance's Job Board.

 

 

 

 

Senior Attorney, Asylum Project - Afghan Response

The senior attorney will provide legal services and representation to asylum seekers seeking protection before U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services and the immigration courts, including recently paroled Afghan evacuees, with a focus on technical support to pro bono attorneys and external partners. The senior attorney also leads the provision of Know Your Rights information and pro se services to recently paroled Afghan evacuees. The attorney should be proficient in a language other than English and must have experience working with asylum seekers.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Conducts preliminary intake interview, gathers all relevant facts for presentation at Unit meetings.  Makes assessment of income eligibility and makes appropriate referrals for those individuals not eligible for Organization services.  Recommends exceptions to financial guidelines to the Supervisor.
  • Develops and implements complex case strategies in consultation with supervisor.
  • Prepares cases for interview or hearing, including drafting legal papers, conducting client advocacy, presenting evidence, etc. in accord with the Code of Professional Responsibility for the legal profession.
  • Carries a volume of work as required by the department. Has in-depth knowledge of legal and other resources. 
  • With the Associate Director and NIJC Pro Bono Manager, prepares cases for placement with pro bono counsel, and provides technical support to pro bono counsel assigned to NIJC cases..
  • Leads NIJC’s legal orientation and pro se workshops for Afghan evacuees
  • Provides technical assistance to external partners regarding complex issues in Afghan cases, in conjunction with the Associate Directors
  • Supervises the coordinator for NIJC’s Afghan Response
  • Remains current on immigration law, policies and procedures. Remains current on implications of criminal and civil law as it applies to the representation of immigrants.
  • Develops and maintains professional relationships with EOIR, DHS, U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Services (USCIS), government and social service organizations and community organizations as necessary.  Interprets immigration and department policies and programs to the public, including public speaking. 
  • Refers clients for necessary social and/or economic assistance when determined to be necessary.
  • In accord with the ethical standards required of the legal profession, the Code of Professional Responsibility, preserves client confidentiality, accounts for client monies and avoids conflict of interest.
  • Maintains complete and accurate client records.  Prepares timely statistical reports.  Conducts quarterly case audits for presentation and review of the Supervisor. 
  • Participates in training on immigration procedures as assigned by the Supervisor.  May conduct training sessions as assigned by the Supervisor.
  • Identifies trends and recurring legal and social concerns.  Recommends strategies for solutions and other needed advocacy.
  • Interprets and translates for project staff as needed.
  • Adheres to professional standards as outlined by governmental bodies, (and/or other appropriate professional associations), private funding sources, Organization plans/policies and Unit guidelines.  Participates in periodic evaluative reviews and/or in-house and external staff training to ensure that she/he understands and continues to adhere to such standards.  Initiates requests for assistance or guidance from Supervisor to address new issues or complex concepts affecting adherence to professional standards.
  • Other duties may be assigned.

Qualifications:  

To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • Education and/or Experience: A law degree (JD), license to practice law, and a minimum of three years’ experience in the area of immigration law, with additional experience in asylum law preferred ; self-motivated and committed to civil liberties advocacy; ability to represent individuals in complex cases and to formulate and implement sophisticated legal strategies; demonstrated ability to work cooperatively on a variety of projects with lawyers, other staff members, and diverse community organizations and coalitions.
  • Language Skills:  High proficiency or fluency in spoken and written Spanish or French required.  Excellent writing and analytical skills; Ability to communicate effectively in legal and non-legal settings with a wide range of individuals and organizations. Ability to read, analyze, and interpret professional journals, technical procedures, or governmental regulations.  Ability to write reports, business correspondence, and procedure manuals.  Ability to effectively present information and respond to questions from groups of managers, clients, customers, and the general public. 
  • Reasoning Ability:   Ability to solve practical problems and deal with a variety of concrete variables in situations where only limited standardization exists. Ability to interpret a variety of instructions furnished in written, oral, diagram, or schedule form.

Apply for the Asylum Project Afghan Response Senior Attorney position on Heartland Alliance's Job Board.

 

 

 

 

Senior Attorney - Detention Project

This position provides legal representation and counseling to immigrants and asylum-seekers appearing before the Executive Office for Immigration Review (EOIR) and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), with a focus on representation of individuals in DHS custody in their bond and removal proceedings, and appeals before the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA). Legal representation may also include work on federal habeas corpus petitions challenging the legality of clients’ detention and detention conditions. The position also provides technical support to pro bono counsel assigned to NIJC cases, both locally and nationally. The Senior Attorney will serve as a mentor to junior staff, as well as the development of new initiatives or projects within the team.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:  

  • Minimum 3 years’ experience in the area of immigration law, with a strong preference for candidates with a background in removal defense and the intersection of criminal and immigration law, or related fields
  • Conducts preliminary intake interview, gathers all relevant facts for presentation at Unit meetings.  Makes assessment of income eligibility and makes appropriate referrals for those individuals not eligible for Organization services.  Recommends exceptions to financial guidelines to the Supervisor.
  • Develops and implements preliminary case strategy in terms of immigration law and procedure.  Develops further strategy in consultation with supervisor.
  • Prepares the case for hearing, drafting legal papers, engaging in negotiation, presenting evidence, etc. in accord with the Code of Professional Responsibility for the legal profession.
  • Conducts assessment of client on social, psychological and economic functioning and determines appropriate interventions and referrals.  Ensures the provision of a wide range of services for clients.
  • Carries a volume of work as required by the department.  Has in-depth knowledge of legal and other resources. 
    • With the Supervisor and NIJC Pro Bono Manager, prepares cases for recruitment of pro bono counsel, and provides technical support to pro bono counsel assigned to NIJC cases, locally and nationally.
    • Travel to detention centers in the Chicago area as well as nationwide is required.
  • Remains current on immigration law, policies and procedures.  Remains current on implications of criminal and civil law as it applies to the representation of immigrants and asylum seekers.
  • Develops and maintains professional relationships with EOIR, DHS, U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Services (USCIS), government and social service organizations and community organizations as necessary.  Interprets immigration and department policies and programs to the public, including through public speaking engagements or trainings. 
  • In accord with the ethical standards required of the legal profession, the Code of Professional Responsibility, preserves client confidentiality, accounts for client monies and avoids conflict of interest.
  • Maintains complete and accurate client records.  Prepares timely statistical reports.  Conducts quarterly case audits for presentation and review of the Supervisor. 
  • Participates in training on immigration procedures as assigned by the Supervisor.  May conduct training sessions as assigned by the Supervisor.
  • Identifies trends and recurring legal and social concerns.  Recommends strategies for solutions and other needed advocacy.
  • Adheres to professional standards as outlined by governmental bodies, (and/or other appropriate professional associations), private funding sources, Organization plans/policies and Unit guidelines.  Participates in periodic evaluative reviews and/or in-house and external staff training to ensure that she/he understand and continues to adhere to such standards.  Initiates requests for assistance or guidance from Supervisor to address new issues or complex concepts affecting adherence to professional standards.
  • Other duties may be assigned.

Qualifications:  

To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • Education and/or Experience:  Juris Doctorate Degree required; minimum of three years’ experience in removal defense and/or the intersection of criminal and immigration law.
  • Language Skills:  Ability to read, analyze, and interpret general business periodicals, professional journals, technical procedures, or governmental regulations.  Ability to write reports, business correspondence, and procedure manuals.  Ability to effectively present information and respond to questions from groups of managers, clients, customers, and the general public.  Ability to read, speak and write in at least one non-English language. Spanish language fluency is preferred but not required, and speakers of other languages are encouraged to apply.
  • Mathematical Skills:  Ability to add, subtract, multiply, and divide in all units of measure, using whole numbers, common fractions, and decimals.  Ability to compute rate, ratio, and percent and to draw and interpret bar graphs.
  • Reasoning Ability:  Ability to solve practical problems and deal with a variety of concrete variables in situations where only limited standardization exists. Ability to interpret a variety of instructions furnished in written, oral, diagram, or schedule form.

Apply for the Detention Project Senior Attorney position on Heartland Alliance's Job Board.

 

 

 

 

Senior Litigation Attorney

NIJC seeks an attorney with litigation experience, including federal litigation, for a full-time federal-court litigation position. We invite applications from attorneys who have a demonstrated commitment to immigrant and civil rights, and who would be interested in, and capable of, contributing to innovative litigation and policy advocacy in the federal courts, both at the district court and in the courts of appeal. Litigation tasks include legal research, drafting of pleadings and briefs, discovery, motion practice, and trials and appeals in both state and federal courts. The litigation attorney will work to develop and implement advocacy strategies in identified areas. The litigation attorney may also be called upon to provide immigration-court level representation for clients in litigation matters (e.g. representing a named-plaintiff in a district court action in his related immigration case). The litigator will collaborate with the NIJC direct service, policy and communications teams. The litigator will work with pro bono attorneys.

Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Identify litigation issues and collaborate with NIJC’s communication, policy, and litigation teams
  • Develop legal strategies
  • Provide legal representation and/or lead or participate in litigation efforts through all phases of litigation, including motions practice, discovery, trial, brief writing, and oral argument (as appropriate)
  • Conduct legal research and draft pleadings and briefs
  • Collaborate with community-based organizations to identify cases/plaintiffs
  • Work with pro bono partners
  • Communicate via the media regarding legal advocacy and policy efforts
  • Identify trends and emerging issues

Qualifications:

To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • Juris Doctorate Degree required; at least two years practicing law is required, four years is preferred. Preferred experience is in immigration and/or human rights law.
  • Candidates with at least two years of litigation experience preferred.
  • Spanish fluency strongly preferred. However, speakers of other languages are encouraged to apply.
  • Self-motivated and committed to civil liberties advocacy
  • Excellent writing and analytical skills
  • Ability to work cooperatively on a variety of projects with lawyers, other staff members, and diverse community organizations and coalitions
  • Ability to communicate effectively in legal and non-legal settings with a wide range of individuals and organizations.
  • Ability to represent individuals in complex cases and to formulate and implement sophisticated legal strategies

Apply for the Senior Litigation Attorney position on Heartland Alliance's Job Board.

 

 

 

 

Supervising Attorney - Immigrant Children's Protection Project

NIJC is looking for an energetic, visionary, and committed supervising attorney to join the Children’s Protection Project. The Supervising Attorney provides legal services and oversees the provision of legal services, to detained and non-detained unaccompanied immigrant children before U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), the immigration court, and other government administrative agencies. The person in this role will supervise a team of lawyers and/or paralegals, ensure quality legal counsel and representation, provide case support, and oversee the day-to-day operations, as well as the ongoing training and professional development of supervisees.  As a member of NIJC’s supervisory team, the supervisor will collaborate with NIJC’s other legal services projects, litigation, policy and communications teams. Individual accountabilities and work volume will be established through the development of annual Success Objectives.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Supervises legal services and oversees paralegals and attorneys providing legal services; including the development of case strategy, preparation, and representation before governmental agencies
  • Ensures accurate data entry by paralegals, attorneys, and interns
  • Oversees and reviews legal intakes; makes legal assessments and determinations regarding representation
  • Ensures timely case preparation, including case opening process, preparing filings, trial preparation, appeals, case closures, and other case management practices
  • Works with supervisory team to build a strong team and oversee the team’s projects
  • Provides recommendations based on case trends to inform project-based strategic decisions
  • Maintains and develops strategic partnerships with key stakeholders
  • Conducts factual and legal research.
  • Provides legal representation to immigrants in immigration proceedings, including before an immigration officer, an immigration judge, and in federal court, as appropriate.
  • Drafts correspondence and documents, including applications, briefs and reports.
  • Improves delivery of legal services, including use of technology to improve efficiency
  • Trains lawyers and non-lawyers in the field of immigration law.
  • Conducts legal presentations regarding law and case(s) to NIJC staff, managing attorney(s) and members of the immigrant community.
  • Maintains accurate, thorough and timely records.
  • Identifies trends and emerging issues and responses to issues
  • Maintains current knowledge regarding immigration law and policies and procedures.
  • Advances an anti-racist organization that promotes diversity, equity and inclusion
  • Reacts to change productively and handles other essentials duties as assigned.

Qualifications:

To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily.  The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required.  Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • Education and/or Experience:  A law degree (JD), license to practice law and at least 3 years’ experience in the legal field, preferably in the field of immigration law. Previous supervisory experience preferred but not required.
  • Language Skills: Fluency in English and Spanish is required. Excellent oral and written communication skills. Demonstrated competency in public speaking and strong interpersonal skills required.  Additional non-English language skills are preferred.
  • Computer Skills:  Proficiency in Microsoft Office, Internet Explorer, Outlook/Exchange; Windows operating systems; and other software routinely used by Heartland Alliance.
  • Driving: May be required to have a current, valid IL Driver’s License.  May be required to drive their own vehicle and/or an Organization vehicle to and from sites.
  • Reasoning Ability:  Ability to solve practical problems and deal with a variety of concrete variables in situations where only limited standardization exists.  Ability to interpret a variety of instructions furnished in written, oral, diagram, or schedule form.

Apply for the Immigrant Children's Protection Project Supervising Attorney position on Heartland Alliance's Job Board.

 

 

 

 

Staff Attorney, Asylum Project - Afghan Response

NIJC is seeking a staff attorney to (1) respond to the needs of Afghan nationals arriving in the Midwest, (2) support NIJC pro bono attorneys providing legal services to refugees, asylees, and other noncitizens eligible for group-based immigration protection (e.g. Temporary Protected Status), (3) provide direct representation to noncitizens impacted by changes in law and policy, and (4) work with stakeholders locally, regionally and nationally.  This attorney will provide legal consultations, advice and representation to low-income immigrants, refugees and asylum seekers before the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, U.S. Department of State, and U.S. Department of Justice. The staff attorney will provide training and technical support to pro bono attorneys.   This staff attorney position requires the ability to engage in community outreach and provide legal consultations at off-site locations.  Given the attorney in this position will also work with NIJC’s existing client population, proficiency in Spanish is required.  Proficiency in other languages other than English is preferred. This position may be based in Chicago or Indianapolis.   

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Conducts preliminary intake interview, gathers all relevant facts for presentation at Unit meetings. 
  • Makes assessment of income eligibility and makes appropriate referrals for those individuals not eligible for Organization services.  Recommends exceptions to financial guidelines to the Supervisor.
  • Develops and implements preliminary case strategy in terms of immigration law and procedure.  Develops further strategy in terms of immigration law and procedure.  Develops further strategy in consultation with supervisor.
  • Prepares the case for hearing, drafting legal papers, engaging in negotiation, presenting evidence, etc. in accord with the Code of Professional Responsibility for the legal profession.
  • Conducts assessment of client on social, psychological and economic functioning and determines appropriate interventions and referrals.  Ensures the provision of a wide range of services for clients.
  • Carries a volume of work as required by the department.  Has in-depth knowledge of legal and other resources.  Provides a wide range of court advocacy services.
  • Remains current on immigration law, policies and procedures.  Remains current on implications of criminal and civil law as it applies to the representation of immigrants and refugees.
  • Develops and maintains professional relationships with the U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Services (USCIS), government and social service organizations and community organizations.  Interprets immigration and department policies and programs to the public, including public speaking. 
  • In accord with the ethical standards required of the legal profession, the Code of Professional Responsibility, preserves client confidentiality, accounts for client monies and avoids conflict of interest.
  • Maintains complete and accurate client records.  Prepares timely statistical reports.  Conducts regular case audits for presentation and review of the Supervisor. 
  • Participates in training on immigration procedures as assigned by the Supervisor.  May conduct training sessions as assigned by the Supervisor.
  • Participates in developing and implementing special projects, May have the primary responsibility for a project involving presentation of a particular ethnic group, immigration problem or advocacy issues on a systematic level.
  • Identifies trends and recurring legal and social concerns.  Recommends strategies for solutions and other needed advocacy.
  • Interprets and translates for department and other Organization staff as needed.
  • Adheres to professional standards as outlined by governmental bodies, (and/or other appropriate professional associations), private funding sources, Organization plans/policies and Unit guidelines.  Participates in periodic evaluative reviews and/or in-house and external staff training to ensure that she/he understands and continues to adhere to such standards.  Initiates requests for assistance or guidance from Supervisor to address new issues or complex concepts affecting adherence to professional standards.
  • Other duties may be assigned.

Qualifications:  

To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • Education and/or Experience:   Juris Doctorate Degree required and one year of direct experience in social service counseling and/or legal representation.
  • Language Skills: Fluency in English and proficiency in Spanish is required.  Proficiency in other non-English languages is preferred.  Excellent oral and written communication skills. Demonstrated competency in public speaking and strong interpersonal skills required. 
  • Computer Skills:  Proficiency in Microsoft Office, Internet Explorer, Outlook/Exchange; Windows operating systems; and other software routinely used by Heartland Alliance.
  • Reasoning Ability:   Ability to solve practical problems and deal with a variety of concrete variables in situations where only limited standardization exists. Ability to interpret a variety of instructions furnished in written, oral, diagram, or schedule form.

Apply for the Asylum Project Afghan Response Staff Attorney position on Heartland Alliance's Job Board.

 

 

 

 

Staff Attorney, Asylum Project - Pro Bono

The staff attorney will provide training and technical legal support to pro bono attorneys representing asylum seekers through NIJC.  The staff attorney will also provide representation to individuals in complex matters involving asylum before the Immigration Courts, Board of Immigration Appeals, and the Department of Homeland Security. 

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Prepares cases for placement with pro bono attorneys
  • Provides technical support to pro bono attorneys representing NIJC clients in asylum matters
  • Reviews briefs, affidavits, and other case materials drafted by pro bono attorneys
  • Organizes and conducts trainings for pro bono attorneys on issues related to asylum law
  • With the Supervisor and NIJC Pro Bono Coordinator, prepares cases for recruitment of pro bono counsel
  • Provides direct representation to NIJC clients seeking asylum and other forms of immigration relief
  • Conducts preliminary intake interview, gathers all relevant facts for case assessments. 
  • Presents cases/issues to asylum team for discussion and recommends next steps.
  • Recommends exceptions to financial guidelines to the Supervisor.
  • Develops and implements case strategy in consultation with supervisor.
  • Prepares cases for interview or hearing, including drafting legal papers, conducting client advocacy, presenting evidence, etc. in accord with the Code of Professional Responsibility for the legal profession.
  • Carries a volume of work as required by the department. 
  • Has in-depth knowledge of legal and other resources. 
  • Remains current on immigration law, policies and procedures.  Remains current on implications of criminal and civil law as it applies to the representation of immigrants.
  • Develops and maintains professional relationships with EOIR, DHS, U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Services (USCIS), government and social service organizations and community organizations as necessary.  Interprets immigration and department policies and programs to the public, including public speaking. 
  • In accord with the ethical standards required of the legal profession, the Code of Professional Responsibility, preserves client confidentiality, accounts for client monies and avoids conflict of interest.
  • Maintains complete and accurate client records.  Prepares timely statistical reports.  Conducts quarterly case audits for presentation and review of the Supervisor. 
  • Participates in training on immigration procedures as assigned by the Supervisor.  May conduct training sessions as assigned by the Supervisor.
  • Identifies trends and recurring legal and social concerns.  Recommends strategies for solutions and other needed advocacy.
  • Adheres to professional standards as outlined by governmental bodies, (and/or other appropriate professional associations), private funding sources, Organization plans/policies and Unit guidelines.  Participates in periodic evaluative reviews and/or in-house and external staff training to ensure that she/he understands and continues to adhere to such standards.  Initiates requests for assistance or guidance from Supervisor to address new issues or complex concepts affecting adherence to professional standards.
  • Reacts to change productively and handles other essentials duties as assigned.

Qualifications:

To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • Education and/or Experience:  Juris Doctorate Degree required.
  • Language Skills:  Spanish fluency preferred. However, speakers of other languages are encouraged to apply. Monolingual English speakers will also be considered. Ability to read, analyze, and interpret professional journals, technical procedures, or governmental regulations.  Ability to write reports, business correspondence, and procedure manuals.  Ability to effectively present information and respond to questions from groups of managers, clients, customers, and the general public. 
  • Reasoning Ability:  Ability to solve practical problems and deal with a variety of concrete variables in situations where only limited standardization exists. Ability to interpret a variety of instructions furnished in written, oral, diagram, or schedule form.

Apply for the Asylum Project Pro Bono Staff Attorney position on Heartland Alliance's Job Board.

 

 

 

 

Staff Attorney - Detention Project

This position provides legal representation and immigration consultations to immigrants within the custody of Immigration & Customs Enforcement (ICE), including Chicago and State of Illinois residents who have been detained by ICE.  The Staff Attorney will advocate for clients before the Immigration Court, ICE, and on occasion USCIS.  As the majority of client work will be in Spanish, this position requires Spanish fluency.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:  

  • Conducts preliminary intake interview, gathers all relevant facts for presentation at Unit meetings.  Makes assessment of income eligibility and makes appropriate referrals for those individuals not eligible for Organization services.  Recommends exceptions to financial guidelines to the Supervisor.
  • Develops and implements preliminary case strategy in terms of immigration law and procedure.  Develops further strategy in terms of immigration law and procedure.  Develops further strategy in consultation with supervisor.
  • Prepares the case for hearing, drafting legal papers, engaging in negotiation, presenting evidence, etc. in accord with the Code of Professional Responsibility for the legal profession.
  • Conducts assessment of client on social, psychological and economic functioning and determines appropriate interventions and referrals.  Ensures the provision of a wide range of services for clients.
  • Carries a volume of work as required by the department.  Has in-depth knowledge of legal and other resources.  Provides a wide range of court advocacy services.
  • Remains current on immigration law, policies and procedures.  Remains current on implications of criminal and civil law as it applies to the representation of immigrants and refugees.
  • Develops and maintains professional relationships with the U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Services (USCIS), government and social service organizations and community organizations.  Interprets immigration and department policies and programs to the public, including public speaking. 
  • In accord with the ethical standards required of the legal profession, the Code of Professional Responsibility, preserves client confidentiality, accounts for client monies and avoids conflict of interest.
  • Maintains complete and accurate client records.  Prepares timely statistical reports.  Conducts quarterly case audits for presentation and review of the Supervisor. 
  • Participates in training on immigration procedures as assigned by the Supervisor.  May conduct training sessions as assigned by the Supervisor.
  • Participates in developing and implementing special projects, May have the primary responsibility for a project involving presentation of a particular ethnic group, immigration problem or advocacy issues on a systematic level.
  • Identifies trends and recurring legal and social concerns.  Recommends strategies for solutions and other needed advocacy.
  • Interprets and translates for department and other Organization staff as needed.
  • Adheres to professional standards as outlined by governmental bodies, (and/or other appropriate professional associations), private funding sources, Organization plans/policies and Unit guidelines.  Participates in periodic evaluative reviews and/or in-house and external staff training to ensure that she/he understand and continues to adhere to such standards.  Initiates requests for assistance or guidance from Supervisor to address new issues or complex concepts affecting adherence to professional standards.
  • Other duties may be assigned.

Qualifications:  

To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • Education and/or Experience:   Juris Doctorate Degree required; and one year of direct experience in social service counseling and/or legal representation.
  • Language Skills:   Ability to read, analyze, and interpret general business periodicals, professional journals, technical procedures, or governmental regulations.  Ability to write reports, business correspondence, and procedure manuals.  Ability to effectively present information and respond to questions from groups of managers, clients, customers, and the general public.  Ability to read, speak and write in Spanish.
  • Mathematical Skills:   Ability to add, subtract, multiply, and divide in all units of measure, using whole numbers, common fractions, and decimals.  Ability to compute rate, ratio, and percent and to draw and interpret bar graphs.
  • Reasoning Ability:   Ability to solve practical problems and deal with a variety of concrete variables in situations where only limited standardization exists. Ability to interpret a variety of instructions furnished in written, oral, diagram, or schedule form.

Apply for the Detention Staff Attorney position on Heartland Alliance's Job Board.

 

 

 

 

Staff Attorney - Immigrant Children's Protection Project (Chicago)

This position provides legal representation and counseling to detained and non-detained unaccompanied immigrant children before U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Services (USCIS) and the Chicago Immigration Court.  A Staff Attorney also advocates for clients before other government administrative agencies and before other service agencies, as needed and/or as appropriate.  

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:  

  • Conducts preliminary intake interviews. Gathers all relevant facts for each case for presentation at team meetings or to legal supervisors.  Makes assessments of income eligibility, if applicable, and makes appropriate referrals for those individuals not eligible for NIJC services.  Recommends exceptions to financial guidelines to supervisors when appropriate.
  • Develops and implements case strategy in terms of immigration law and procedure. 
  • Prepares cases for interviews and/or hearings, drafting legal cover letters and briefs, engaging in negotiation, presenting evidence, etc., in accord with the Code of Professional Responsibility for the legal profession.
  • Provides Know Your Rights presentations to detained children.
  • Carries a volume of work as required by the project. 
  • Remains current on immigration law, policies and procedures.  Remains current on criminal and civil law as they apply to the representation of immigrants and refugees.
  • Develops and maintains professional relationships with all stakeholders, including with representatives of government agencies, the Immigration Court, and family members and caretakers of clients. 
  • Interprets immigration laws and governmental policies and programs for the public, including at outreach and public speaking events. 
  • In accord with the ethical standards required of the legal profession, the Code of Professional Responsibility, preserves client confidentiality, accounts for client monies, and avoids conflicts of interest.
  • Maintains complete and accurate client records.  Ensures timely entry of all statistical data into databases/servers.  Conducts independent and team case audits. 
  • Participates in training on immigration law and procedures as assigned by legal supervisors.  May conduct trainings as assigned by legal supervisors, as well.
  • Participates in developing and implementing special projects.   Such projects could include presentations on certain legal issues, problems, topics, or developments in immigration law, or new initiatives within the project relating to representation of individual clients or groups of clients.
  • Identifies trends and recurring legal and social concerns.  Recommends strategies for solutions and other needed advocacy.
  • Interprets for NIJC clients and staff and translates documents and other materials as needed.
  • Adheres to professional standards as outlined by governmental bodies, private funding sources, NIJC plans/policies, and project guidelines.  Participates in periodic evaluative reviews and/or in-house and external staff trainings to ensure understanding of and adherence to such standards.  Requests assistance or guidance from legal supervisors as needed to address new issues or complex concepts affecting adherence to professional standards.
  • Other duties may be assigned.

Qualifications:  

To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily.  The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required.  Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • Education and/or Experience:   Juris Doctorate Degree required. One year of direct experience in legal representation preferred.
  • Language Skills:   Ability to read, analyze, and interpret case law, statutes, governmental regulations, professional journals, and other forms of legal writing.  Ability to write legal briefs, cover letters, procedural guidelines, and professional emails and other correspondence.  Ability to effectively present information and respond to questions from co-workers, managers, clients, and the general public.  Ability to read, speak, and write in Spanish.  Additional non-English language skills are preferred.
  • Driving: May be required to have a current, valid IL Driver’s License.  May be required to drive their own vehicle and/or an Organization vehicle to and from sites.
  • Mathematical Skills:   Ability to add, subtract, multiply, and divide in all units of measure, using whole numbers, common fractions, and decimals.  Ability to compute rate, ratio, and percent and to draw and interpret bar graphs.
  • Reasoning Ability:   Ability to solve practical problems and deal with a variety of concrete variables in situations where only limited standardization exists.  Ability to interpret a variety of instructions furnished in written, oral, diagram, or schedule form.

Apply for the Immigrant Children's Protection Project Staff Attorney position on Heartland Alliance's Job Board.

 

 

 

 

Staff Attorney - Immigrant Legal Defense Project

NIJC's Immigrant Legal Defense Project is seeking an attorney to provide legal consultations, advice and representation to low-income immigrants, refugees and asylum seekers before the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, U.S. Department of State, and U.S. Department of Justice.  This staff attorney position requires Spanish fluency, ability to engage in community outreach, and provide legal consultations at off-site locations.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:  

  • Conducts preliminary intake interview, gathers all relevant facts for presentation at Unit meetings. 
  • Makes assessment of income eligibility and makes appropriate referrals for those individuals not eligible for Organization services.  Recommends exceptions to financial guidelines to the Supervisor.
  • Develops and implements preliminary case strategy in terms of immigration law and procedure.  Develops further strategy in terms of immigration law and procedure.  Develops further strategy in consultation with supervisor.
  • Prepares the case for hearing, drafting legal papers, engaging in negotiation, presenting evidence, etc. in accord with the Code of Professional Responsibility for the legal profession.
  • Conducts assessment of client on social, psychological and economic functioning and determines appropriate interventions and referrals.  Ensures the provision of a wide range of services for clients.
  • Carries a volume of work as required by the department.  Has in-depth knowledge of legal and other resources.  Provides a wide range of court advocacy services.
  • Remains current on immigration law, policies and procedures.  Remains current on implications of criminal and civil law as it applies to the representation of immigrants and refugees.
  • Develops and maintains professional relationships with the U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Services (USCIS), government and social service organizations and community organizations.  Interprets immigration and department policies and programs to the public, including public speaking. 
  • In accord with the ethical standards required of the legal profession, the Code of Professional Responsibility, preserves client confidentiality, accounts for client monies and avoids conflict of interest.
  • Maintains complete and accurate client records.  Prepares timely statistical reports.  Conducts quarterly case audits for presentation and review of the Supervisor. 
  • Participates in training on immigration procedures as assigned by the Supervisor.  May conduct training sessions as assigned by the Supervisor.
  • Participates in developing and implementing special projects, May have the primary responsibility for a project involving presentation of a particular ethnic group, immigration problem or advocacy issues on a systematic level.
  • Identifies trends and recurring legal and social concerns.  Recommends strategies for solutions and other needed advocacy.
  • Interprets and translates for department and other Organization staff as needed.
  • Adheres to professional standards as outlined by governmental bodies, (and/or other appropriate professional associations), private funding sources, Organization plans/policies and Unit guidelines.  Participates in periodic evaluative reviews and/or in-house and external staff training to ensure that she/he understands and continues to adhere to such standards.  Initiates requests for assistance or guidance from Supervisor to address new issues or complex concepts affecting adherence to professional standards.
  • Other duties may be assigned.

Qualifications:  

To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • Education and/or Experience:   Juris Doctorate Degree required; and one year of direct experience in social service counseling and/or legal representation.
  • Language Skills: Fluency in English and Spanish is required. Excellent oral and written communication skills. Demonstrated competency in public speaking and strong interpersonal skills required.  Additional non-English language skills are preferred.
  • Computer Skills:  Proficiency in Microsoft Office, Internet Explorer, Outlook/Exchange; Windows operating systems; and other software routinely used by Heartland Alliance.
  • Reasoning Ability:   Ability to solve practical problems and deal with a variety of concrete variables in situations where only limited standardization exists. Ability to interpret a variety of instructions furnished in written, oral, diagram, or schedule form.

Apply for the Immigrant Legal Defense Project Staff Attorney position on Heartland Alliance's Job Board. 

 

 

 

 

Staff Attorney - LGBTQ Project

The National Immigrant Justice Center’s LGBTQ Immigrant Rights Initiative provides comprehensive representation to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) immigrants and asylum seekers as well as to those living with HIV/AIDS.  With the support of pro bono attorneys, the project (1) represents immigrants and asylum seekers before United States Citizenship & Immigration Services, the Immigration Courts (primarily in Chicago), the Board of Immigration Appeals, and the U.S. Courts of Appeals, (2) advocates for improvements in conditions for detained LGBT asylum seekers, and (3) collaborates with members of local and national immigrant and LGBTQ advocacy groups to raise awareness of the issues facing the LGBTQ immigrant population. 

NIJC seeks a staff attorney who would participate in all areas of the LGBTQ Immigrant Rights Initiative’s work, with a particular focus on direct representation and pro bono attorney support of detained LGBTQ asylum seekers coming in from the Tijuana area into the San Diego area. This position with NIJC’s LGBTQ Immigrant Rights Initiative is part of a program with partner organizations to address the needs of LGBTQ individuals at the border.

Individual accountabilities and work volume will be established through the development of annual Success Objectives, within the framework outlined below.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Provide Individual Representation: The staff attorney will be responsible for handling cases before both USCIS and the Immigration Courts.  Case types will likely include requests for: asylum, withholding of removal, and relief under the Convention Against Torture; U visas; cancellation of removal; and permanent residency. Because many of the Project’s clients are detained, representation will also include appearing at bond hearings and filing administrative release requests.
  • Screen Potential Cases: The staff attorney will interview potential clients and analyze cases to discern eligibility for immigration benefits. They will also review transcripts and administrative records and make recommendations regarding appellate representation for LGBTQ individuals.  All decisions to accept cases will be made at weekly project meetings in conjunction with supervising staff.
  • Conduct Legal Research: The staff attorney will conduct research on legal issues as well as country conditions for LGBT individuals abroad.  This research will be used both in individual cases and to support potential impact litigation and policy advocacy.
  • Monitor Detention Conditions: The staff attorney will work to improve access to legal support for LGBTQ immigrants and asylum seekers who are detained in facilities across the country. The attorney will identify locations where detained immigrants are held and work with local officials and non-profit organizations to ensure that LGBTQ individuals are informed of their legal rights.  The attorney will also monitor conditions for LGBTQ individuals in these facilities and may file administrative complaints with the Department of Homeland Security to address human rights violations in detention.
  • Advise Pro Bono Attorneys: Because the LGBT Immigrant Rights Initiative handles many cases with assistance from pro bono attorneys possessing limited immigration expertise, the staff attorney must be able to advise counsel about the law and process of representing individuals in immigration proceedings.
  • Other duties may be assigned.

Qualifications:

To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • Education and Experience: Law degree from ABA accredited law school; law license; at least one year of experience in immigration law and/or refugee law; experience in immigration court and/or federal court.
  • Languages: Fluency in Spanish is required.
  • Collaboration: This position involves working closely with partner organizations. The staff attorney must be an excellent communicator and a team player.
  • Other Qualifications: Excellent writing, editing, organizational, analytical, administrative, and computer skills required. Ability to manage multiple tasks efficiently and perform well under strict deadlines. Because the attorney will work with detainees in remote facilities, an applicant who is licensed and able to drive is preferred.

Apply for the LGBTQ Staff Attorney position on Heartland Alliance's Job Board. 

 

 

 

 

Pro Bono Project Coordinator - Asylum Project

The Asylum Pro Bono Coordinator will be the initial point-of-contact for individuals seeking asylum representation through the Project and for volunteer attorneys who wish to provide pro bono representation to asylum seekers through NIJC.  The Coordinator conducts and coordinates asylum intakes; prepares asylum cases in conjunction with project staff; supports pro bono attorneys handling asylum matters; and assists with the development of asylum pro bono materials and trainings.  Individual accountabilities and work volume will be established through the development of annual Success Objectives, within the framework outlined below.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Coordinate NIJC’s non-detained asylum intakes, responds to internal and external referrals, and conducts asylum intakes
  • Make recommendations to the project attorneys regarding case assessments and feasibility of pro bono placement
  • Serve as the initial point-of-contact for pro bono inquiries from current and prospective pro bono attorneys and coordinators at law firms and corporations across the country regarding NIJC’s work
  • Provide referrals for post-asylum ancillary services for NIJC asylum clients
  • Generate reports regarding NIJC’s asylum pro bono work
  • Track individual asylum cases, pro bono placement, and outcomes in NIJC’s database
  • Coordinate legal trainings and workshops for asylum pro bono attorneys
  • Create and update NIJC asylum pro bono training materials in collaboration with the Asylum Project staff
  • Compile pro bono summaries for distribution in the monthly pro bono newsletter
  • Collaborate with the pro bono manager to conduct outreach and recruitment of potential pro bono attorneys
  • Coordinate the referral of asylum cases to pro bono attorneys
  • Respond to questions from asylum pro bono attorneys and refer questions to the project attorneys as appropriate
  • Participate in a bi-annual audit of the Asylum Project’s pro bono cases
  • Participate in legal trainings and review legal materials to remain current on immigration law, policies, and procedures
  • Interpret for Spanish-speaking clients and translate Spanish-language documents as needed
  • Assist in the representation of in-house asylum clients
  • Reacts to change productively and handles other essentials duties as assigned.

Qualifications:

To perform this job successfully, the ideal candidate must be able to perform each essential duty.  The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions. The ideal candidate is a mature professional who can work independently and take initiative in response to tight deadlines and emerging opportunities.  The ideal candidate needs to be able to identify/anticipate emerging opportunities or issues. The ideal candidate pays attention to detail, knows how to prioritize his/her work, has strong organizational skills, maintains confidentiality, thrives in a fast-paced and demanding environment, and is open to change.  

  • Education and/or Experience: Bachelor’s degree required. Masters’ degree preferred. Minimum of two years of experience in human rights field, legal and/or communications work required. May give credit towards years of experience if attained a degree higher than a Bachelor’s Degree.
  • Language Skills: Fluency in English and Spanish. Ability to communicate articulately with internal and external audiences. Excellent oral and written communication skills. Demonstrated competency in public speaking and strong interpersonal skills required.
  • Computer Skills: Proficiency in Microsoft Office, Internet Explorer, Outlook/Exchange; Windows operating systems; and other software routinely used by Heartland Alliance.
  • Other Skills: Ability to: assimilate and convey messages on a variety of issues relating to immigration in a succinct and compelling way and tailored to different audiences; work independently with limited supervision; be goal-oriented and multi-task; have a diplomatic presence; develop and maintain good working relationships with a wide variety of legal entities; communicate effectively, both orally and in writing.

Apply for the Asylum Pro Bono Project Coordinator position on Heartland Alliance's Job Board.

 

 

 

 

Pro Bono Coordinator - LGBTQ Immigrant Rights Initiative

The LGBT Immigrant Rights Initiative provides legal services to low-income immigrants who identify as lesbian, gay bisexual, or transgender (LGBT) and those who are living with HIV. The LGBT Pro Bono Project Coordinator will work with diverse partners to ensure LGBT immigrants, refugees, and asylum seekers have access to counsel in immigration proceedings. The LGBT Pro Bono Project Coordinator will be responsible for serving as the NIJC representative with pro bono attorneys and law firms, NIJC staff and other immigrant and human rights organizations to ensure access to justice for LGBT immigrants, refugees, and asylum seekers. The LGBT Pro Bono Project Coordinator will be expected to lead project outreach and will work closely with the LGBT project’s supervising attorney in order to keep abreast of the most current developments in refugee and immigration law, help oversee Pro Bono LGBT project cases. Individual accountabilities and work volume will be established through the development of annual Success Objectives, within the framework outlined below.

We are committed to providing an inclusive and welcoming environment, and we encourage applications from people of color, immigrants, women, members of the LGBTQ community, and other underrepresented and marginalized groups. Consistent with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and Illinois Civil Rights law, it is the policy of Heartland Alliance to provide reasonable accommodation when requested by a qualified applicant or employee with a disability, unless such accommodation would cause an undue hardship. The policy regarding requests for reasonable accommodation applies to all aspects of employment, including the application process. If reasonable accommodation is needed, please contact your interviewer for more information.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Maintains country conditions packets.
  • Drafts applications, affidavits, letters and/or legal pleadings and prepares supporting documentation
  • Corresponds with non-local detainees
  • Coordinates NIJC’s response to detention conditions concerns for LGBT detainees
  • Facilitates pro bono placement process for LGBT cases
  • Works with and coordinates training of interns
  • Oversees project intake process including conducting intakes
  • Ensures the accuracy, substance, and timeliness of statistical and narrative reports, projects, schedules, and other relevant work products
  • Reviews, analyzes and presents cases to supervisor
  • Reports on project outcomes and trends and oversees accuracy of database
  • Organizes NIJC’s LGBT community outreach efforts
  • Remains current knowledge of immigration policies, procedures, and internal structures
  • Performs other job-related duties as assigned

Qualifications:

To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • Education and/or Experience: Bachelor’s degree required. Masters’ degree preferred. Minimum of two years of experience in human rights field, legal and/or communications work required. May give credit towards years of experience if attained a degree higher than a Bachelor’s Degree. 
  • Language Skills: Fluency in English and Spanish is required. Additional non-English language skills are preferred. Ability to communicate effectively with internal and external audiences.  Excellent oral and written communication skills. Demonstrated competency in public speaking and strong interpersonal skills required. 
  • Computer Skills: Proficiency in Microsoft Office, Internet Explorer, Outlook/Exchange; Windows operating systems; and other software routinely used by Heartland Alliance.

Apply for the LGBTQ Immigrant Rights Initiative Pro Bono Coordinator position on Heartland Alliance's Job Board.

 

 

 

Litigation Project Coordinator

The Litigation Project Coordinator helps implement and support NIJC’s nationwide advocacy and litigation efforts. NIJC relies on federal court litigation to challenge erroneous agency level decisions, respond to heightened immigration enforcement, challenge immigration detention, and advocate for reform of the immigration system. As part of this program, the Coordinator, along with NIJC attorneys, will work with NIJC clients and diverse national partners to challenge human rights violations and wrongful immigration enforcement initiatives and policies to promote fairness in our nation’s immigration system. Travel may be required to carry out the program objectives. Please note this is not an attorney position. 

The overall responsibilities of this position involve: (1) working with attorneys to keep the project organized and on track for deadlines and responsibilities; this work requires maintaining dockets and calendars and managing client case files in NIJC’s database, (2) conducting client intakes and investigation for litigation-related case work, which entails review of case records for appeals and interviewing clients who may become plaintiffs in future cases, (3) synthesizing data and helping to identify trends in immigration practices, (5) conducting research in support of individual cases, (6) drafting client affidavits and declarations in support of litigation or related immigration court proceedings, and (7) assembling filings and assisting with formatting and citations on briefs for in-house cases. Individual accountabilities and work volume will be established through the development of annual Success Objectives, within the framework outlined below.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Draft affidavits, complete immigration applications, and collect evidence in support of an application;
  • Conduct client intakes;
  • Investigate factual basis of a potential appeal or district court action in collaboration with litigation attorneys;
  • Work with attorneys to decipher, organize, and identify trends in data obtained under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA);
  • Proofread, cite check, and format briefs for federal court filings;
  • Become familiar with NIJC’s database and work with litigation staff to ensure proper case tracking procedures are used;
  • Track federal litigation, both internal to NIJC and nationally at the Supreme Court level;
  • Provide support to the pro bono component of the project; maintain pro bono assignments and activities in the database, write thank you notes and case summaries for possible case placement; and
  • Troubleshoot across departments as issues arise.

Qualifications: 

To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • Education and/or Experience: Bachelor’s degree and at least one year of experience in human rights field, legal and/or communications work required. Work done while the applicant was in school can be counted toward this requirement. This position may require experience with vulnerable populations.
  • Language Skills: Fluency in English and Spanish is required. Individuals with fluency in a third language are highly encouraged to apply. Ability to effectively interview clients and engage in fact-gathering for advocacy or litigation in a fast-paced environment.
  • Technical Skills: Fluency in Microsoft Office especially Word and Excel; Ability to maintain and organize large quantities of information in an electronic database
  • Attention to detail and accuracy: Ability to competently and effectively communicate orally and in writing for a variety of audiences; Ability to manage multiple tasks efficiently
  • Demonstrated commitment to immigrants’ rights/human rights
  • Volunteer Management: Ability to train interns, to assist with projects, supervise work, and assign additional tasks on an as-needed basis
  • Client Confidentiality: Ability to maintain client confidentiality, account for client monies, and avoid conflicts of interest in accordance with organizational policies and ethical standards required of the legal profession and the code of professional responsibility.

Apply for the Litigation Project Coordinator position on Heartland Alliance's Job Board.

 

 

 

 

Paralegal - Adult Detention Project

The detention project paralegal is a member of NIJC’s detention project and is primarily responsible for conducting detention intake and providing case support (including research, case review, documentation preparation and other related tasks to support general operations and the work of staff and pro bono attorneys). The paralegal must be fluent in Spanish.  The paralegal is encouraged to seek accreditation with the Department of Justice if appropriate.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:

Detention Intake & Case Screening & Case Support:

  • Conduct intake interviews with detained non-citizens and their family members
  • Present intake interviews for legal assessment
  • In coordination with the assigned attorney, conduct legal and country-conditions research to assess claims and eligibility for immigration relief
  • Manage coverage for phone intake hotline
  • Staff weekly phone intake hotline
  • Monitor and respond, as needed, to voicemails on the intake line outside of intake hours
  • Manage and respond to mail and faxes from individuals in ICE custody
  • Manage and respond to mail from non-citizens in state custody
  • Respond to referrals from community and legal organizations seeking to refer detained cases Prepare case acceptance packets and case closing letters for attorneys
  • Organize and scan closed case files
  • Prepare immigration cases for filing with attorneys:
    • Prepare affidavits and indexes; gather supporting documents
    • Conduct country research and draft country conditions sections of filings
    • Assist attorneys in preparation of pre-hearing statements

 Miscellaneous:

  • Participate in trainings and review legal materials to remain current on immigration law, policies, and procedures
  • Once travel to facilities resumes, participate in overnight Know Your Rights trips to detention facilities as needed, 2-3 times per year
  • Serve as a backup for conducting individual orientations at LOP facilities when additional support is needed
  • Train and supervise interns on administrative procedures and case assessment protocol
  • Any other duties as assigned.

Qualifications:  

To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • Education and/or Experience: Bachelor’s degree with demonstrated experience working with immigrants, refugees and/or asylum seekers.  At least one year of experience working with these populations preferred.
  • Language Skills: Fluency in Spanish is required. Ability to communicate articulately with internal and external audiences.
  • Certificates, Licenses, Registrations:  Must have or is able to get a current, valid IL Driver’s License.  Travel to sites around the Chicago area is required.
  • Other Qualifications: Excellent writing, editing, organizational and computer skills required.  Ability to manage multiple tasks efficiently and perform well under strict deadlines.

Apply for the Adult Detention Project Paralegal position on Heartland Alliance's Job Board.

 

 

 

 

Paralegal - Goshen Office

The NIJC Goshen office paralegal provides general paralegal support for immigrants, refugees, asylum-seekers seeking immigration benefits including, asylum, Special Immigrant Juvenile Status (SIJS) and other forms of relief.  The paralegal conducts intake, research, case review, documentation preparation and other related tasks to support general operations and the work of staff and pro bono attorneys.  The Goshen paralegal will also have program assistant responsibilities including intake coordination, office supply management, and community outreach liaison work.  This position will assist with NIJC’s Afghan Response work to support legal services for Afghan evacuees.  Individual accountabilities and work volume will be established through the development of annual Success Objectives, within the framework outlined below.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Conducts legal and factual research.
  • Assesses cases to assist in determining relief eligibility.
  • Conducts interviews with clients and witnesses.
  • Drafts applications, affidavits, letters and/or legal pleadings and prepares supporting documentation.
  • Prepares materials for submission to Department of Homeland Security, Immigration Court, or other entities as appropriate.
  • Reviews, analyzes and presents cases to supervisor.
  • Remains current on immigration law, policies and procedures.
  • Maintains complete, thorough, accurate and current records in an organized fashion in accordance with legal standards, rules and ethics.
  • Ensures the accuracy, substance and timeliness of statistical and narrative reports, projects, schedules and other relevant work products.
  • In accord with organizational policies and the ethical standards required of the legal profession, the Code of Professional Responsibility, preserves client confidentiality, accounts for client monies and avoids conflicts of interest.
  • Coordinates the ordering of Indiana office supplies.
  • Responds to and supports community volunteers.
  • Supports the scheduling and pre-screening of client intakes.  
  • Other duties may be assigned.

Qualifications:  

To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • Education and/or Experience: Bachelors degree with demonstrated experience working with immigrants, refugees and/or asylum seekers.  At least one year of experience working with these populations preferred.
  • Language Skills:  Fluency in English and Spanish is required.  Ability to communicate articulately with internal and external audiences.
  • Other Qualifications:  Excellent writing, editing, organizational and computer skills required.  Ability to manage multiple tasks efficiently and perform well under strict deadlines.

Apply for the Goshen Office Paralegal position on Heartland Alliance's Job Board.

 

 

 

 

Paralegal - Immigrant Children's Protection Project

The Paralegal provides general paralegal support for detained and non-detained unaccompanied immigrant children (UICs) seeking protection through asylum, Special Immigrant Juvenile Status (SIJS) and other forms of relief.  The paralegal conducts Know Your Rights presentations, intakes, research, case review, affidavit writing, documentation preparation and other related tasks to support general operations and the work of staff and pro bono attorneys. Individual accountabilities and work volume will be established through the development of annual Success Objectives, within the framework outlined below.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Give Know Your Rights presentations on the immigration process and legal rights.
  • Conduct legal screenings with detained children.
  • Responds to NIJC’s non-detained UIC hotline and conducts intake, as assigned.
  • Conducts legal and factual research.
  • Assesses cases to determine eligibility.
  • Conducts interviews with clients and witnesses.
  • Drafts applications, affidavits, letters and/or legal pleadings and prepares supporting documentation.
  • Prepares materials for submission to Department of Homeland Security, Immigration Court, or other entities as appropriate.
  • Reviews, analyzes and presents cases to supervisor.
  • Remains current on immigration law, policies and procedures.
  • Maintains complete, thorough, accurate and current records in an organized fashion in accordance with legal standards, rules and ethics.
  • Ensures the accuracy, substance and timeliness of statistical and narrative reports, projects, schedules and other relevant work products.
  • In accord with organizational policies and the ethical standards required of the legal profession, the Code of Professional Responsibility, preserves client confidentiality, accounts for client monies and avoids conflicts of interest.
  • Reacts to change productively and handles other essentials duties as assigned.

Qualifications:

To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • Education and/or Experience: Bachelor’s degree with demonstrated experience working with immigrants, refugees and/or asylum seekers.  At least one year of experience working with these populations preferred.
  • Certificates, Licenses, Registrations:  Must have or is able to get a current, valid IL Driver’s License.  Travel to sites around the Chicago area is required.
  • Other Skills and Qualifications: Must successfully pass background check.
  • Language Skills:  Fluency in English and Spanish is required.  Ability to communicate articulately with internal and external audiences.
  • Other Qualifications:  Excellent writing, editing, organizational and computer skills required.  Ability to manage multiple tasks efficiently and perform well under strict deadlines.

Apply for the Immigrant Children's Protection Project Paralegal position on Heartland Alliance's Job Board.

 

 

 

 

Paralegal - Immigrant Legal Defense Project, Counter-Trafficking Team

The Paralegal provides general paralegal support for the Immigrant Legal Defense Legal Project, working closely with the counter-trafficking team. The paralegal conducts intake, research, case review, documentation preparation and other related tasks to support general operations and the work of staff and pro bono attorneys. Individual accountabilities and work volume will be established through the development of annual Success Objectives, within the framework outlined below.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Conducts intake, as assigned.
  • Conducts legal and factual research.
  • Assesses cases to determine eligibility.
  • Conducts interviews with clients and witnesses.
  • Drafts applications, affidavits, letters and/or legal pleadings and prepares supporting documentation.
  • Prepares materials for submission to Department of Homeland Security, Immigration Court, or other entities as appropriate.
  • Reviews, analyzes and presents cases to supervisor.
  • Tracks individual cases and outcomes
  • Remains current on immigration law, policies and procedures.
  • Maintains complete, thorough, accurate and current records in an organized fashion in accordance with legal standards, rules and ethics.
  • Ensures the accuracy, substance and timeliness of statistical and narrative reports, projects, schedules and other relevant work products.
  • In accord with organizational policies and the ethical standards required of the legal profession, the Code of Professional Responsibility, preserves client confidentiality, accounts for client monies and avoids conflicts of interest.
  • Other duties may be assigned.

Qualifications:

To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • Education and/or Experience: Bachelor’s degree with demonstrated experience working with immigrants, refugees and/or asylum seekers.  At least one year of experience working with these populations preferred.
  • Language Skills:  Fluency in English and Spanish is required.  Ability to communicate articulately with internal and external audiences.
  • Other Qualifications:  Excellent writing, editing, organizational and computer skills required.  Ability to manage multiple tasks efficiently and perform well under strict deadlines.

Apply for the Immigrant Legal Defense Counter-Trafficking Paralegal position on Heartland Alliance's Job Board.

 

 

 

 

Paralegal - Indianapolis Office

The NIJC Indianapolis office paralegal provides general paralegal support for immigrants, refugees, asylum-seekers, and detained and non-detained unaccompanied immigrant children (UICs) seeking immigrant benefits including, asylum, Special Immigrant Juvenile Status (SIJS) and other forms of relief.  The paralegal conducts intake, research, case review, documentation preparation and other related tasks to support general operations and the work of staff and pro bono attorneys. Individual accountabilities and work volume will be established through the development of annual Success Objectives, within the framework outlined below.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Conducts legal and factual research.
  • Assesses cases to assist in determining relief eligibility.
  • Conducts interviews with clients and witnesses.
  • Drafts applications, affidavits, letters and/or legal pleadings and prepares supporting documentation.
  • Prepares materials for submission to Department of Homeland Security, Immigration Court, or other entities as appropriate.
  • Reviews, analyzes and presents cases to supervisor.
  • Assists in the placement of SIJS cases with pro bono attorneys and tracks individual cases and outcomes
  • Remains current on immigration law, policies and procedures.
  • Maintains complete, thorough, accurate and current records in an organized fashion in accordance with legal standards, rules and ethics.
  • Ensures the accuracy, substance and timeliness of statistical and narrative reports, projects, schedules and other relevant work products.
  • In accord with organizational policies and the ethical standards required of the legal profession, the Code of Professional Responsibility, preserves client confidentiality, accounts for client monies and avoids conflicts of interest.
  • Other duties may be assigned.

Qualifications:

To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • Education and/or Experience: Bachelor’s degree with demonstrated experience working with immigrants, refugees and/or asylum seekers.  At least one year of experience working with these populations preferred.
  • Language Skills:  Fluency in English and Spanish is required.  Ability to communicate articulately with internal and external audiences.
  • Other Qualifications:  Excellent writing, editing, organizational and computer skills required.  Ability to manage multiple tasks efficiently and perform well under strict deadlines.

Apply for the Indianapolis Office Paralegal position on Heartland Alliance's Job Board.

 

 

 


Internships

NIJC offers internships to law students and undergraduate students to work in a variety of its different legal services programs. The internships present an excellent opportunity to learn more about U.S. immigration law and policies while making a difference in the lives of low-income and impoverished individuals who are in need of legal representation. NIJC is not currently accepting internship applications. Please check our internships page for future opportunities.

All positions are based out of NIJC's Chicago loop office unless otherwise indicated in the job description.

NIJC is a program of the Heartland Alliance for Human Needs & Human Rights that champions the human rights and improves the lives of men, women, and children who are threatened by poverty or danger. For more than 100 years we have been providing solutions- both through services and policy- that move individuals from crisis to stability and on to success. Heartland Alliance's work in housing, health care, legal protections, and economic security serves more than 100,000 people annually, helping them build better lives. Heartland Alliance makes all hiring and employment decisions without regard to race, creed, color, age, gender, gender identity, marital or parental status, religion, ancestry, national origin, physical or mental disability, sexual orientation, sexual identity, immigrant status, political affiliation or belief, ex-offender status (depending on the offense and position to be filled), unfavorable military discharge, membership in an organization whose primary purpose is the protection of civil rights or improvement of living conditions and human relations, height, weight, or HIV infection, in accord with the Organization's AIDS Policy Statement of September, 1987. Individuals with disabilities requiring accommodation should contact the Employee Services Office at (312) 660-1431.