Staff Attorney (Domestic Violence Victims Services)
Prairie State Legal Services is a not-for-profit legal aid organization that provides civil legal aid services to the poor, elderly, and people with disabilities. Prairie State has 12 offices serving 36 counties throughout northern and central Illinois. Prairie State focuses services on legal problems that impact the ability of our clients to meet their basic human needs, including physical safety, access to healthcare, adequate housing, and similar needs. It is the only legal aid organization in the majority of its service area. Annually, PSLS handles over 22,000 applications for legal help and serves over 16,000 clients. We pride ourselves on fostering a work environment that is motivating, collaborative, and fun, with plenty of opportunities for professional growth. More information is available on our website at www.pslegal.org
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 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.
Among other duties as assigned, the Staff Attorney in this project 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;
- Engage with police and prosecutors to advocate for 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;
- 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, including those serving persons with disabilities, older adults, and other special needs; and,
- Exhibit a high level of personal energy, organization, and commitment to the position and the PSLS mission.
Salary and Benefits
Full-time position, 37.5 hours per week. Salary starts at $50,000 per year, higher depending upon experience; Excellent comprehensive benefits package including health, dental, retirement, training and education, and generous leave time.
- Applicants 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 3L applicants will be sitting for the February 2019 Illinois bar exam.
- Experience in trial advocacy and negotiation preferred
- Commitment to aiding victims of domestic violence, sexual assault and family abuse
- Strong interpersonal skills
- Excellent oral/written communication, research skills, and computer competency
- Organizational and case management skills
- Ability to work effectively as a team member
The ideal candidate will have demonstrated experience in effectively communicating with and serving victims. Candidates with Spanish language proficiency are highly preferred. Local travel is required, with a valid driver’s license and reliable transportation. Start date is flexible, but prefer no later than July 1, 2019.
Please indicate “Ottawa 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:
- Director of Human Resources Jessica Hodierne at email@example.com
- Program Administrator Connie Peterson at firstname.lastname@example.org
Resumes accepted until position is filled.
Prairie State Legal Services is committed to creating a diverse environment and is proud to be an equal opportunity, affirmative action employer. We will recruit, employ, pay, and promote qualified applicants and employees without regard to race, color, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, national origin, genetics, disability, age, or any other legally protected status.