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Benefits Attorney

New Haven Legal Assistance Association (NHLAA) is a legal aid organization, founded in 1964 in the midst of the Civil Rights movement. We were established on the principle that everyone, regardless of race or income, should have equal access to the justice system. We work side by side and in relationship with the community in order to lift up our clients’ voices and achieve racial, economic, and social justice. NHLAA serves clients living in 22 cities and towns in the Greater New Haven and Lower Naugatuck Valley communities. Our client base are primarily people of color impacted by the legacy of structural racialization, systemic racism, and implicit bias. They are children, low-wage workers, domestic violence survivors, individuals with disabilities, seniors, and immigrants.   About the Position NHLAA seeks an attorney to provide legal representation and advice to clients to obtain and prevent the wrongful termination of state and federal benefits programs, including cash assistance (e.g. TANF, tax credit programs, food assistance (e.g. SNAP), employment benefits, health coverage (Medicaid & ACA/Obamacare), and utility assistance, among others. The attorney will specifically be responsible for the following: • Maintain an active caseload of representation and advice cases, including regular court and/or administrative hearing appearances; • Conduct community outreach remotely and in-person in accordance with CDC guidelines and coordinate with other social service agencies working with our clients; and • Identifying systemic issues that limit access to such programs and working to develop strategies to respond to those systemic issues.   Location • NHLAA’s primary office is located in New Haven. Occasional travel to court and to our satellite office in Derby, Connecticut will also be required.   Timeline • The position will begin August 1, 2023.   Compensation • Salaries will be based on experience and in accordance with our salary scale. For example, an attorney with 10 years of legal experience will have a starting salary of 88,100. We offer generous benefits, including a 403(b) retirement plan; health, dental, vision, and short term disability insurance; sick leave; vacation; most observed state and federal holidays; and loan repayment assistance.    It is the policy of New Haven Legal Assistance to provide equal employment opportunity (EEO) to all persons regardless of age, color, national origin, citizenship status, physical or mental disability, race, religion, creed, gender, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity and/or expression, genetic information, marital status, or any other characteristic protected by federal, state or local law.   
Required Qualifications • Active bar membership with either (1) confirmed eligibility to waive into membership in the Connecticut bar, or (2) willingness to sit for the July 2023 or February 2024 Connecticut bar. • Demonstrated commitment to grassroots efforts for economic, racial and social justice. • Demonstrated ability to work with diverse populations. • Excellent organizational skills. • Excellent written and verbal communication skills, and ability to present to diverse audiences, specifically racially, ethnically, and socioeconomically diverse communities.  • Ability to work independently and collaboratively.   Preferred Qualifications • Experience with direct client services • Knowledge of state and federal benefits programs for low-income individuals • Experience providing and coordinating community outreach and education
To Apply: 
Application Instructions  • Please send a cover letter, resume, writing sample, and list of at least three references to Carolyn Gontarski at NHLAA invites all applicants to include in their cover letter a statement about how your unique background and/or experiences might contribute to the diversity, cultural vitality, and perspective of our staff and legal services practice. 


Submission Deadline: 
September 30, 2023
Organization Information: 
New Haven Legal Assistance Association
United States