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Paralegal (Public Benefits: Veterans Rights Project)


For over 50 years, Legal Aid Chicago has provided free civil legal assistance to people living in poverty in metropolitan Chicago. Each year our attorneys, volunteers, and staff help resolve civil legal problems, including domestic violence, consumer fraud, and unfair evictions. Legal Aid Chicago was founded on the philosophy that all individuals are entitled to quality civil legal representation, regardless of their income. We work to ensure that poverty is not an impediment to justice by dismantling the legal barriers that perpetuate inequality. Legal Aid Chicago staff live our mission through our core values of equity, excellence, inclusion, kindness, and respect. 

Position: Legal Aid Chicago seeks a full-time paralegal in the The Public Benefits Practice Group (PBPG). The Public Benefits Practice Group challenges wrongful denials, terminations, calculations, overpayments, and sanctions concerning benefits from the Department of Human Services including SNAP, TANF, AABD Cash, and Medicaid. The group also challenges wrongful denials, terminations, and overpayments concerning benefits from the Social Security Administration including SSI and Social Security Disability benefits. The Veterans Rights Project within PBPG seeks to meet the holistic civil legal needs of military veterans and their families with special emphasis on benefits from the Department of Veterans Affairs. 

Responsibilities: The paralegal will work under the direct supervision of an attorney and the authority conferred upon the paralegal in the handling of cases or client service functions is determined by the supervisory attorney. The paralegal will handle all functions related to casework, from initial intake through representation of clients at administrative hearings. The duties of the paralegal include the following:

  • Maintain knowledge of law and procedures related to benefits administered by the Veterans Administration, the Social Security Administration, and the Illinois Department of Human Services
  • Maintain a regular intake schedule and other casework duties which include, without limitation: consultation with supervising attorney as to proper course of action, preserve the confidence of clients, avoid conflicts of interest, maintain the same ethical standards of conduct required of attorneys
  • Represent clients by undertaking such activities as: interview and initial fact gathering, factual and legal research, devise, review, revise and implement case strategy, prepare a case for hearing, draft legal papers, negotiate, present evidence, interrogate witnesses, conduct oral advocacy, and properly prepare the client and maintain an ongoing relationship
  • Provide advice and referral to individuals not accepted as clients and make appropriate referrals to additional or alternative legal services and to necessary social services
  • Participate in maintaining good community relations by acting as a liaison between community groups and the Legal Aid Chicago staff. Tasks may include, without limitation: outreach and community education to veterans groups and social service agency personnel; advocacy training in legal rights and entitlement to above-named groups; training of staff, and other groups, when assigned to or approved by the supervisory attorney
  • Assist the Veterans Rights Project in conducting community clinics and events with pro bono attorneys
  • Apply proper eligibility standards, both financial and subject matters, in accepting clients for service
  • Prepare reports and statistics related to cases and other projects
  • Attend trainings and maintain up-to-date knowledge on relevant issues
  • Track data related to grants and assist on related reporting
  • Attend trainings and maintain up-to-date knowledge on relevant issues
  • Maintain case files and accurate timekeeping in electronic case management system
  • Support attorneys in all stages of litigation
  • Assist attorneys with administrative tasks 
  • Maintain proficiency with all equipment, computer hardware and software necessary to perform the duties of the position and 
  • Other duties as determined by the Supervising Attorneys and Director

Salary: Commensurate with experience. Legal Aid Chicago offers a comprehensive benefits package, including low-cost employer-paid health plan options, employer-provided group life and long-term disability insurance, fitness center access, generous paid time off, and much more.



  • Excellent oral and written skills and a demonstrated interest or experience working with Legal Aid Chicago’s client populations.
  • The applicant’s personal background, experience, or professional background should reflect an ability to work effectively in cross-cultural situations with clients, co-workers and the community we serve. 
  • Good organizational and information-gathering skills as well as strong and versatile computer skills are essential. 
  • Ability to work collaboratively with others and to draft documents including letters and basic pleadings is essential as is experience and competence advocating for other people.


  • An undergraduate degree
  • Familiarity with public benefit program eligibility criteria; 
  • Experience and comfort interacting with people living in poverty, veterans, trauma survivors, and people with physical, mental and cognitive disabilities.
To Apply: 

Click here to apply. Cover letter, resume, writing sample, and the contact information for two professional references, one of which should be a former employer, are required to apply. 


Legal Aid Chicago is firmly committed to creating a diverse workplace and is proud to provide equal employment opportunities to all applicants and therefore does not discriminate on the basis of creed, color, national origin, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, age religion, marital or parental status, alienage, disability, political affiliation or belief, military or military discharge status, or ex-offender status. Applicants who have experiences with our client communities are encouraged to apply.


Submission Deadline: 
May 15, 2023
Organization Information: 
Legal Aid Chicago
United States