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Open positions at the National Immigrant Justice Center:

Associate Director of Policy

National Legal Counsel

Senior Policy Attorney

Senior Attorney

Legal Supervisor - Children's Protection Project

Staff Attorney - Children's Protection Project (Chicago, IL or Indianapolis, IN)

Staff Attorney - ILD Legal Protection Fund

Paralegal - Children's Protection Project (Chicago, IL or Indianapolis, IN)

Internships

Fellowships

 

Associate Director of Policy

NIJC is seeking an associate director of policy to assist in developing and spearheading strategic advocacy efforts on immigration-related issues, primarily at the federal level. This position is based in Washington, D.C.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Support the Director of Policy in developing and implementing diverse grassroots, local, state, and federal advocacy strategies on immigrant rights issues, with a focus on issues that impact asylum seekers, detainees, and immigrants deprived of full due process protections.
  • Coordinate closely with communications, litigation, detention, and other NIJC teams to advance strategic reform goals on immigration detention and due process issues.
  • Work in formal and informal coalitions of legal aid and advocacy organizations to advocate for policy reform; draft and edit statements, reports, and other jointly-produced products.
  • Draft advocacy and educational materials on emerging policy issues.
  • Assist in drafting comments for NIJC in response to agency notice-and-comment rulemaking; preparing petitions for rulemaking; preparing comments on agency-proposed policy, guidance, programs, and other initiatives not subject to notice-and-comment rulemaking.
  • Represent NIJC and its priorities at external meetings.
  • Participate in grant proposal development, editing, review and submission.
  • Help plan and direct the online components of broad-based campaigns across the new media platform, including web, email, and social networks.
  • Other research and writing assistance as requested by the Director of Policy or the Executive Director.
  • Maintain and develop relationships with members of Congress, the White House, and other governmental agencies.

Competencies:

  • Interpersonal Skills – Builds relationships with staff and external stakeholders; maintains confidentiality; listens and remains open to others' ideas and tries new things.
  • Oral Communication - Speaks clearly and persuasively in positive or negative situations; listens and obtains clarification; responds concisely and presents positions in a compelling manner; demonstrates group presentation skills; participates in meetings.
  • Written Communication - Writes clearly and informatively; edits work for spelling and grammar; varies writing style according to audience; presents numerical data effectively.
  • Collaboration - balances team and individual responsibilities; exhibits objectivity and openness to others' views; gives and welcomes feedback; contributes to building a positive team spirit; solicits and applies program participant feedback, as well as feedback from collaborating agencies; puts success of team above own interests; able to build morale and group commitments to goals and objectives; supports everyone's efforts to succeed; demonstrated skill working in a team environment, understanding when and how to effectively incorporate a team approach.
  • Quality Management - Looks for ways to improve and promote quality; demonstrates accuracy and thoroughness.
  • Ethics - Treats people with respect; keeps commitments; inspires the trust of others; works with integrity and ethically; upholds organizational values.
  • Organizational Support - Follows policies and procedures; completes administrative tasks correctly and on time; supports organization's goals and values; supports affirmative action and respects diversity.
  • Planning/Organizing - Prioritizes and plans work activities; takes initiatives; uses time efficiently; sets goals and objectives; organizes or schedules other people and their tasks in a way that ensures coverage at all times; develops realistic action plans.
  • Professionalism - Approaches others in a tactful manner; reacts well under pressure; treats coworkers and participants with respect and consideration regardless of their status or position; accepts responsibility for own actions; follows through on commitments.
  • Adaptability - Adapts to changes in the work environment; manages competing demands; changes approach or method to best fit the situation; able to deal with frequent change, delays, or unexpected events; willing to address urgent needs outside of regular business hours.

Qualifications:

  • Education and/or Experience: Minimum of three years of related professional experience, Juris Doctorate or Masters degree in Public Policy or related field of study required.
  • Language Skills: Ability to read, analyze, and interpret regulations, legislation, including immigration laws and regulations, legal memos, case law and related materials.
  • 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 Associate Director of Policy on Heartland Alliance's job board.

 

 


National Legal Counsel

The National Legal Counsel (NLC) will be a senior position that works across the NIJC’s legal services, litigation, policy and communications teams to provide a unique approach to human rights advancement at a time when immigrant communities are increasingly under attack. In this capacity, the NLC will help strengthen NIJC’s systemic reform agenda through the delivery of strategic immigration legal services on a national and, when appropriate, local level. In consultation with NIJC project supervisors, the NLC will ensure the provision of legal representation in key immigration cases that carry impact on a national scale with regard to NIJC’s priority issue areas including harsh immigration detention and enforcement policies as well as access to asylum. The NLC will be responsible for consulting with NIJC supervisors to incorporate policy and communications components into direct case work so as to strategically advance NIJC’s policy reform agenda. Some of the work will require rapid response and travel to respond to the issues facing the immigrant community. The NLC will be directly supervised by the Director of Policy, and will also work closely with directors of the litigation and legal services teams.

Job duties include:

  • Coordinate with policy and management teams to identify communications/ policy/litigation priorities where targeted representation is critical to advancing goals
  • Identify and build relationships with key partners in key geographic locations to refer potential cases
  • Identify through screening and intake strategic cases for impact – nationally and locally – and assess clients' willingness to share their stories with the media, public, legislators, etc.
  • Manage legal representation of impact cases either through direct representation or placement and mentorship of pro bono partners, including representation in the immigration courts, USCIS, Board of Immigration Appeals and, when appropriate, federal court. Develop and implement protocol to ensure that policy and communications goals are pursued at each stage of representation.
  • In consultation with NIJC supervisors, develop and pursue advocacy efforts that document human rights abuses witnessed through direct representation cases, including utilizing grievance mechanisms available through international agencies and domestic watchdog agencies. Coordinate closely with communications team to elevate.
  • Coordinate with national pro bono firms and recruit pro bono partners for cases as appropriate
  • Evaluate the project and develop long-term strategic plan for national representation work
  • Maintain a commitment to elevating the voices of persons impacted by harmful immigration detention and enforcement policies through creative approaches to communications and policy work and intensive coordination with NIJC’s Washington, DC and Chicago-based communications and policy teams

Competencies include:

  • Deep knowledge of immigration law and procedure
  • Understanding of the pro bono culture and experience working with pro bono attorneys
  • Experience managing an immigration legal services program
  • 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, building 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
  • Experience seeing the big picture and advancing reform while providing individual legal representation
  • Exceptional verbal and written communication skills
  • Demonstrated skill in maintaining the balance between legal representation and advocacy

Education and experience:

  • Proven experience as an attorney, with a track record of success in legal services leadership
  • Immigration law experience required, refugee experience a plus.
  • At least 10 years of successful representation of immigrants and refugees and advocacy and communications teams to achieve goals.
  • Excellent analytical skills, proficiency with Microsoft Office Suite.
  • JD required

Apply for the national legal counsel on Heartland Alliance's job board.

 

 


Senior Policy Attorney

NIJC seeks a Senior Policy Attorney, based in Washington, D.C., to challenge human rights and due process violations through direct legal representation. The Senior Attorney will partner with NIJC’s legal team and its national partners to identify immigration defense cases to litigate in the immigration courts to support NIJC’s advocacy. Focus will be on egregious cases of human rights and due process violations, with a focus on cases implicating separation of family or community. We are looking for an experienced attorney eager to develop and pursue a creative approach to legal representation that includes the documentation of human rights abuses, utilization of grievance mechanisms available through international agencies and domestic watchdog agencies, and communications work.

The Senior Policy Attorney will provide a unique approach to human rights advancement at a time when immigrant communities are increasingly under attack. In this capacity, the Senior Attorney will help strengthen NIJC’s systemic reform agenda through the delivery of strategic immigration legal services on a national and, when appropriate, local level. In consultation with NIJC project supervisors, the Senior Attorney will ensure the provision of legal representation in key immigration cases that carry impact on a national scale with regard to NIJC’s priority issue areas including harsh immigration detention and enforcement policies as well as access to asylum. The Senior Attorney will strive to incorporate policy and communications components into direct case work so as to strategically advance NIJC’s policy reform agenda. Some of the work will require rapid response and travel to respond to the issues facing the immigrant community. This position is based in NIJC's Washington, D.C., office and will be directly supervised by the Director of Policy.

Job duties include:

  • Coordinate with policy and management teams to identify communications/ policy/litigation priorities where targeted representation is critical to advancing goals
  • Identify and build relationships with key partners in key geographic locations to refer potential cases
  • Identify through screening and in-take strategic cases for impact – nationally and locally – and assess client’s willingness to share their stories with the media, public, legislators, etc.
  • Manage legal representation of impact cases either through direct representation or placement and mentorship of pro bono partners, including representation in the immigration courts, USCIS, and Board of Immigration Appeals. Develop and implement protocol to ensure that policy and communications goals are pursued at each stage of representation.
  • Develop and pursue advocacy efforts that document human rights abuses witnessed through direct representation cases, including utilizing grievance mechanisms available through international agencies and domestic watchdog agencies. Coordinate closely with communications team to elevate.
  • Maintain a commitment to elevating the voices of persons impacted by harmful immigration detention and enforcement policies through creative approaches to communications and policy work and intensive coordination with NIJC’s Washington, D.C. and Chicago-based communications and policy teams.

Competencies include:

  • Deep knowledge of immigration law and procedure
  • 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, building trust, collaboration and a culture that welcomes change
  • Demonstrated strength in managing and resolving conflict
  • Subscribes to NIJC values, advancing due process and human rights protections for immigrants and refugees
  • Experience balancing long-term strategic vision with short-term implementation
  • Experience seeing the big picture and advancing reform while providing individual legal representation
  • Exceptional verbal and written communication skills
  • Demonstrated skill in maintaining the balance between legal representation and advocacy

Education/Experience:

  • Proven experience as an attorney, with a track record of success in legal services leadership
  • Immigration law experience required, refugee experience a plus
  • At least 5 years of successful representation of immigrants and refugees and advocacy and communications teams to achieve goals
  • Excellent analytical skills, proficiency with Microsoft Office Suite
  • JD required

Apply for the senior policy attorney on Heartland Alliance's job board.

 

 

 

Senior Attorney

The senior attorney position provides legal representation and immigration legal service counseling to immigrants appearing before the Executive Office for Immigration Review (EOIR) and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), with a focus on the representation of complex cases involving asylum seekers, including children, families, and adults. The position also provides technical support to pro bono counsel assigned to complex NIJC cases. A senior attorney advocates for clients on complex cases before government administrative agencies and service agencies, as needed and/or as appropriate. 

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:  

  • Minimum 3 years’ legal experience, with a strong preference for candidates with a background in immigration representation.
  • 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 Supervisor and NIJC Pro Bono Coordinator, prepares complex cases for recruitment of pro bono counsel
  • Provides technical support to pro bono counsel assigned to complex NIJC cases.
  • 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.
  • Other duties may be assigned.

Education and/or Experience: Juris Doctorate Degree required; and at least three years of practicing law with a preference in immigration and/or human rights law; 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: 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.  High proficiency or fluency in Spanish required.

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.

Physical Demands: The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • While performing the duties of this Job, the employee is regularly required to talk or hear.
  • The employee is frequently required to stand; walk; sit; use hands to finger, handle, or feel and reach with hands and arms.
  • The employee must occasionally lift and/or move up to 25 pounds.
  • Specific vision abilities required by this job include close vision, distance vision, color vision, peripheral vision, depth perception and ability to adjust focus.

Work Environment: The work environment characteristics described here are representative of those an employee encounters while performing the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • The noise level in the work environment is usually moderate.

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

 

 

 

Legal Supervisor - Children's Protection Project

The Legal Supervisor is a member of the NIJC supervision team and 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 supervisor will directly supervise one or more NIJC staff members and will oversee the day-to-day operations as well as the ongoing training and professional development of supervisees.  As a member of the supervisory team, the legal supervisor will be responsible for knowledge regarding other areas of legal services provided by NIJC and provide supervisory support.  The supervisor will be expected to liaise with other NIJC projects and develop and integrate strategic collaborations between projects.  The supervisor will also be responsible for internal and external reports and periodic evaluations.  Individual accountabilities and work volume will be established through the development of annual Success Objectives, within the framework outlined below.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Supervises legal services for detained and non-detained immigrant children and oversees paralegals, attorneys, and interns providing legal services.
  • Reviews legal intakes; assigns follow-up questions and research; makes legal assessments and determinations regarding representation.
  • Supervises attorneys and paralegals in the development of case strategy, preparation and representation before governmental agencies.
  • Oversees the referral of clients to other social service provides; maintains and develops relationships with other service providers and stakeholders.
  • Ensures accurate data entry by paralegals and attorneys.
  • Works with other project supervisors to ensure project work is compliant with funder requirements.
  • Identifies trends and emerging issues and develops strategies to respond where appropriate.
  • Monitors and tracks cases to ensure deadlines and urgent needs are met.
  • Conducts factual and legal research. Trains lawyers and non-lawyers in the field of immigration law.
  • Provides legal representation to detained and non-detained unaccompanied immigrant children before USCIS, the immigration court, state court, and other governmental agencies.
  • Collaborates with NIJC’s policy, communications, and litigation teams
  • Strategizes methods to improve the delivery of legal services and increase efficiency
  • Conducts legal presentations to NIJC staff and members of the immigrant community.
  • 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 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.
  • 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:  A law degree (JD), license to practice law and at least 2 years’ experience in the legal field, preferably in the field of immigration law; or a bachelor’s degree with at least 7 years’ experience as a Board of Immigration Appeals’ accredited representative.
  • 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.

Physical Demands:  The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job.  Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • While performing the duties of this job, the employee is regularly required to talk or hear.
  • The employee is frequently required to stand; walk; sit; use hands to finger, handle, or feel and reach with hands and arms.
  • The employee must occasionally lift and/or move up to 25 pounds.
  • Specific vision abilities required by this job include close vision, distance vision, color vision, peripheral vision, depth perception, and ability to adjust focus.

Apply for the Legal Supervisor position on Heartland Alliance's job board.

 

 

Staff Attorney - Children's Protection Project (Chicago)

NIJC is also now accepting applications for a Children's Protection Project Staff Attorney based in Indianapolis, Indiana

This position provides legal representation and immigration service counseling to immigrants and refugees appearing before the U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Services (USCIS).  A Staff Attorney advocates for clients before other government administrative agencies and before other service agencies, as needed and/or as appropriate.  The employee in this position at a residential program may be required to remain on Organization premises during break and/or meal periods and may also be required to stay on Organization premises until a replacement arrives. 

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 apples 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 at least one non-English language.
  • 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.

Physical Demands:  

The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • While performing the duties of this Job, the employee is regularly required to talk or hear.
  • The employee is frequently required to stand; walk; sit; use hands to finger, handle, or feel and reach with hands and arms.
  • The employee must occasionally lift and/or move up to 25 pounds.
  • Specific vision abilities required by this job include close vision, distance vision, color vision, peripheral vision, depth perception and ability to adjust focus.

Work Environment:  The work environment characteristics described here are representative of those an employee encounters while performing the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • The noise level in the work environment is usually moderate.

Apply for the Children's Project Staff Attorney in Chicago on Heartland Alliance's job board.

Apply for the Indianapolis-based Children's Project Staff Attorney here.  

 

 

 

Staff Attorney - ILD Legal Protection Fund

This position provides legal representation and immigration service counseling to immigrants and refugees appearing before the U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Services (USCIS).  A Staff Attorney advocates for clients before other government administrative agencies and before other service agencies, as needed and/or as appropriate.  The employee in this position at a residential program may be required to remain on Organization premises during break and/or meal periods and may also be required to stay on Organization premises until a replacement arrives. 

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 apples 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 at least one non-English language.
  • 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.

Physical Demands: The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • While performing the duties of this Job, the employee is regularly required to talk or hear.
  • The employee is frequently required to stand; walk; sit; use hands to finger, handle, or feel and reach with hands and arms.
  • The employee must occasionally lift and/or move up to 25 pounds.
  • Specific vision abilities required by this job include close vision, distance vision, color vision, peripheral vision, depth perception and ability to adjust focus.

Work Environment:  The work environment characteristics described here are representative of those an employee encounters while performing the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • The noise level in the work environment is usually moderate.

Apply for the ILD Legal Protection Fund Staff Attorney on Heartland Alliance's job board. 

 

 

Paralegal - Children's Protection Project (Chicago)

NIJC is now also accepting applications for a Children's Protection Project Paralegal based in Indianapolis, Indiana

The Children’s Protection Project Paralegal provides general paralegal support for non-detained unaccompanied immigrant children (UICs) seeking protection through 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.

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.
  • Conducts educational presentations.
  • 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: 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 another language may be 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.

Physical Demands: The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • While performing the duties of this job, the employee is regularly required to use hands to finger, handle, or feel and talk and hear.
  • The employee is frequently required to reach with hands and arms.
  • The employee is occasionally required to stand; walk; sit; climb or balance; and stoop or kneel.
  • The employee must occasionally lift and/or move up to 10 pounds.
  • The noise level is usually moderate.

Apply for the Chicago-based Children's Project Paralegal on Heartland Alliance's job board.

Apply for the Indianapolis-based Children's Project Paralegal here. 


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 currently accepting internship applications for the spring and summer of 2019.

Click here for more information about internships.


Fellowships

NIJC is accepting applications for post-graduate legal fellowships. Fellowship applications are due by August 1, 2018. NIJC is open to any funding source identified by a candidate, but expects to, at a minimum, identify a candidate for an Equal Justice Works Fellowship application, and a Skadden Fellowship or a Soros Fellowship. NIJC also welcomes applicants who will be seeking post-graduate fellowship funding through their own law schools. Please contact us if you are interested in a fellowship. No phone calls please.

Application Materials:

  1. Cover Letter: Explain your interest in NIJC and any experiences you have working with immigrant populations.
  2. Resume: Identify any language skills that you have. Fluency in Spanish is required for almost all positions with NIJC.
  3. Writing Sample: Provide a 5-10 page excerpt from a document you have produced in law school or in a legal position that is your own work.
  4. Brief Project Proposal: Most post-graduate legal fellowships require applicants to propose a specific project. Please give a brief description of the kind of work you would like to do. Your proposal should explain why that work is important and how you think it would complement NIJC’s existing work. NIJC will work with the selected candidate to ensure a strong proposal. Candidates are welcome to propose work with any of NIJC’s existing projects, but we are most interested in individuals who are interested in working with immigrant victims of trafficking, detained immigrants, and/or asylum seekers.
  5. Other: If you would like NIJC to host you for a fellowship other than any of the ones listed above, please provide a description of the fellowship and its requirements with your application. In addition to the above information, finalists will be asked to provide references and transcripts, and will be selected for various rounds of interviews.
     

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.