Regional Disaster Relief Staff Attorney (Community Engagement Unit)
Legal Aid of Southeastern PA (“LASP”) seeks an attorney to provide civil legal services and community outreach to low-income individuals and families impacted by natural disasters in Bucks, Chester, Delaware and Montgomery Counties. This is a full-time position funded through December 31, 2025. Generally, LASP serves clients facing issues regarding housing, including landlord/tenant law and foreclosure, family law, protection from domestic violence, consumer, employment and public benefits. The position will be located in Norristown in the Community Engagement Unit, which focuses on community outreach and collaboration with a broad and expanding network of community partners. The attorney will work closely with the Regional Disaster Relief Project Manager/Paralegal to plan and organize outreach events and clinics; recruit, train, and oversee the work of volunteer attorneys and law students; and represent clients in a host of legal matters, with a particular emphasis on meeting the range of legal needs of residents impacted by natural disasters. The attorney also will work closely with LASP’s Communications Director.
LASP began disaster relief work in response to the devastation caused by Hurricane Ida in 2021. Hurricane Ida impacted 200 homes and led to over 20,000 Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) applications in LASP’s service area. LASP handled over 100 cases in connection with Hurricane Ida. This position will continue LASP’s effort to increase access to legal services to low-income people impacted by the remnants of Hurricane Ida and expand awareness of disaster legal aid services in low-income communities and the disaster-response network, while providing legal representation for FEMA appeals, housing, bankruptcy, consumer credit and other disaster related legal issues. The attorney will receive a salary commensurate with experience. Proof of COVID-19 vaccination is required. Applicants may apply for a medical or religious exemption. COVID protocols are in place.ESSENTIAL DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES include the following:
1. Interviewing clients, assisting in determining eligibility for services, and ascertaining and investigating facts;
2. Conducting legal research and interpreting statutes, case law, regulations, and other sources of law;
3. Providing advice and counsel to clients;
4. Preparing applications and legal documents, including but not necessarily limited to: FEMA applications and appeals, briefs, pleadings, motions, notices, correspondence, memoranda, discovery and documents responsive to discovery requests;
5. Working closely with the Disaster Relief Project Manager/Paralegal, LASP’s Helpline, Communications Director, Development Director and others to identify unmet needs and ensure LASP’s effective and immediate response to natural disasters affecting low-income residents in LASP’s service area;
6. Collaborating with LASP’s pro bono team to recruit and train attorneys to assist with disaster legal services;
7. Developing strategy and arguments for presentation of cases and assisting in preparation of witnesses for hearings and trials;
8. Representing clients in trial and appellate courts and before quasi-judicial or administrative agencies;
9. Reviewing decisions and consulting with LASP’s management team to determine merit of potential appeals;
10. Participating in external professional and community organizations relevant to casework;
11. Conducting clinics, community education, and workshops;
12. Creating and updating legal resources, such as flyers, pro se materials, fact sheets, etc.;
13. Becoming engaged in LASP team efforts to achieve office and program goals, including participation in program-wide affinity groups and task forces;
14. Developing knowledge of community referral resources and assessing community and client needs;
15. Enhancing skills and substantive knowledge through training, CLE, and other educational opportunities;
16. Abiding by all applicable professional standards of ethics and practice;
17. Completing required administrative tasks including entering of notes and timekeeping in LASP case management software, and maintaining of physical files;
18. Ensuring that requirements of grants and contracts which may provide funding for the position are followed, and assisting with grant reports;
19. Performing other duties and responsibilities as may be assigned.SUPERVISOR:
Community Engagement Unit Supervising Attorney.EQUAL OPPORTUNITY EMPLOYER:
LASP is an equal opportunity employer and will not discriminate in the recruitment, selection, or advancement of employees on the basis of race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy, gender identity, and sexual orientation), national origin, age (40 or older), disability, genetic information or on any other basis prohibited by law.Note:
Please see lasp.org/careers for a complete list of current openings.
Eligible to practice law in Pennsylvania. 0-5 years’ experience as a lawyer. Demonstrated proficiency in word processing, Outlook products, case management software, and online legal research tools. Passionate commitment to public interest law and serving low-income individuals and vulnerable populations. Strong written and oral advocacy and organizational skills. The successful candidate must be willing to accept complex and challenging cases and develop creative strategies to assist clients. Spanish language proficiency is desirable.
Send resume, writing sample and a cover letter including the job title (Regional Disaster Relief Staff Attorney (NEW08112022)) to Elise Wilson-Coles, Human Resources Manager at Legal Aid of Southeastern Pennsylvania by email to Hiring@lasp.org. Position will remain open until filled.