Staff Attorney – Domestic Violence Victims Services/Immigration

Job Details

At Prairie State Legal Services, we empower survivors of domestic violence with the information and legal help they need to stop abuse and build safe, stable lives for themselves and their children. We work with immigrant victims of violence and trafficking to secure relief for individuals eligible for lawful status or U.S. citizenship, with the aim of improving their economic stability, physical safety, and overall well-being. We focus our services on survivors of abuse and violent crime.

PSLS is seeking a Staff Attorney to join our team in the Waukegan office and provide services to Lake County residents as part of our Domestic Violence Victim Services Project. Under this project, PSLS provides comprehensive legal assistance to victims of domestic violence and sexual assault, with a focus on matters that arise as a direct result of the client’s victimization. Services include obtaining protective/restraining orders, assisting with immigration issues faced by survivors of domestic violence and trafficking, and other relief to ensure our clients’ safety and security. Clients may receive legal assistance in a wide range of other legal issues as necessary to address consequences of victimization and obtain long-term safety and stability; this may include housing, employment, consumer, and family law matters. Prairie State is the only legal aid organization in the majority of our area and we pride ourselves on providing high quality legal services to our clients while fostering a work environment that is motivating, collaborative, and rewarding, with plenty of opportunities for professional growth.

Job Description

Among other duties as assigned, the Staff Attorney will:

• Interview victims of abuse in a manner sensitive to the trauma they may have experienced and attuned to honoring their choices

• Assess the needs of victims in terms of their immediate legal needs for protection and other legal issues that are an outgrowth of abuse

• Engage with domestic violence and sexual assault providers to coordinate service delivery and identify/address issues that have an impact on victims

• Provide legal services including legal research and factual investigation, counsel and advice, brief services and document preparation, dispute resolution and representation of clients in administrative and judicial proceedings

• Represent clients for domestic violence orders of protection and related domestic case issues including U-visa, T-visa, VAWA-self petitions, and other family-based immigration relief

• Provide accurate and complete information for grant reporting to grant funders including documenting services in the case record

• Attend training required by the grant

• Actively participate in staff committees or task forces focused on services for victims

• Develop and maintain networking relationships with local bar associations and with local, state, and federal governments and community agencies that serve our client population

• Exhibit a high level of personal energy, organization, and commitment to the position and the PSLS mission

Salary and Benefits

The Staff Attorney position is a full-time position at 37.5 hours per week. PSLS offers a salary competitive with similar organizations. Our Staff Attorney salary scale starts at $50,000 per year for candidates who meet the minimum qualifications, and increases with each year of relevant experience. PSLS is committed to providing an excellent, comprehensive benefits package to its full-time employees that includes:

• Health insurance, including the opportunity to qualify for a wellness credit

• Dental insurance

• Vision insurance

• 403b Retirement Plan including employer contributions • Extensive training and education program

• PTO that starts at 3 weeks/year and increases with additional years worked at PSLS

• Flex scheduling and partial remote work available

• Paid sick leave

• 6 weeks of paid parental leave after one year of employment

• 12 Paid holidays

Qualifications

• Candidates who are currently admitted to the practice of law in the State of Illinois, or admitted in another state and eligible for reciprocity in Illinois are preferred. Consideration will be given to law graduates who will be sitting for the July 2021 bar exam.

• Experience in trial advocacy and negotiation preferred

• Strong interpersonal skills

• Excellent oral/written communication, research skills, and computer competency

• Organizational and case management proficiency

• Ability to work effectively as a team member

• Spanish language proficiency is preferred, but not required

• Some travel is required; applicant must have a valid driver’s license and/or reliable transportation

• We will give preference to candidates who have experience providing services to low-income individuals

• Local travel is required, with a valid driver’s license or reliable transportation.

Application Details

Please indicate “Waukegan DV Staff Attorney” in the subject line and email a letter explaining your interest and experience, resume, three references, and a short writing sample (no more than 10 pages) to [email protected]

Resumes accepted until position is filled.

Prairie State Legal Services is committed to creating a diverse and inclusive working environment and is proud to be an equal opportunity employer. We recruit, employ, pay, and promote qualified applicants and employees without regard to race, ethnicity, color, religion, gender, gender identity, expression, or presentation, sexual orientation, national origin, genetics, disability, age, or any other legally protected status.

The Organization

Prairie State Legal Services is a not for profit civil legal aid organization that has served northern and central Illinois for more than 40 years, maintains 11 office locations, and has a staff of over 175 employees including training and litigation staff with extensive experience. Our 36 county service area includes rural communities, suburban areas, and mid-size urban cities which necessitates the development of diverse strategies and we encourage our staff to cultivate and utilize creative approaches to reach and serve our client population. Employees of PSLS benefit from the expertise and community connections of their local office staff along with robust program-wide resources. We strive to provide an array of services responsive to the needs of our clients and therefore have developed several specialized projects and maintain one of the most productive pro bono programs in the nation. PSLS has excellent fiscal controls and upholds the highest rating from Charity Navigator and Guidestar. For more information regarding PSLS services and operations, please visit our website at www.pslegal.org

Job Status: Open

Job Type: Legal

Regions: IL, Waukegan

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