Paralegal: Homelessness Prevention Law Project
Homelessness Prevention Law Project
Public Counsel is the largest pro bono public interest law firm in the country. Founded in 1970, it is dedicated to advancing equal justice under law and addressing economic, racial, and other inequities by delivering free legal and social services to the most vulnerable members of our community. Public Counsel operates eight legal projects: Children’s Rights, Community Development, Consumer Rights, Homelessness Prevention, Immigrants’ Rights, Veterans’ Rights, the Audrey Irmas Project for Women & Girls’ Rights, and our impact litigation project, Opportunity Under Law. Public Counsel has a full-time staff of over 130. We seek to have a racially inclusive staff.
Public Counsel’s Homelessness Prevention Law Project (HPLP) serves individuals who are homeless or at high risk of becoming homeless. HPLP provides pro bono representation to homeless individuals and families to secure food, shelter, clothing and other vital benefits. In addition, HPLP assists unrepresented low-income litigants in unlawful detainer actions, and helps address tickets and warrants that present barriers to an individual’s housing and stability.
In addition to our homelessness prevention and anti-displacement efforts, our recent work includes:
- Supporting local tenants in their successful efforts to obtain an Eviction Moratorium ordinance.
- Teaming up with other non-profit legal services providers, tenant organizers and community-based organizations throughout Los Angeles County to push forward the implementation of a Right to Counsel for all tenants in eviction proceedings.
- Responding to federal attempts to rollback housing subsidies for immigrant families and fair housing protections.
The Paralegal will be a part of a team participating in a new program that will focus on partnering with community-based organizations and tenants to fight back against unlawful housing practices by providing legal support and direct legal services. This program will serve tenants in the South Los Angeles Area in partnership with tenant organizers. Public Counsel is adopting a community lawyering approach to reach and support tenants where they live with issues that require legal intervention, including but not limited to: eviction prevention, landlord dispute resolution, obtaining repairs, accessing and utilizing City and Government resources, Reasonable Accommodation, and disability access/discrimination.
This is a full-time position that will involve off-site clinic work in South Los Angeles communities and other parts of Los Angeles County. The position has the following responsibilities:
- Carry a high volume caseload that may include a mix of landlord-tenant counseling and eviction defense with attorney supervision;
- Provide support to Staff Attorneys and Supervising Attorney;
- Act as a resource for other Public Counsel staff and community partners;
- Participate in community outreach, including preparing and presenting trainings and special projects;
- Coordinate grant reporting, billing, and outcome tracking for case work as directed by the Supervising Attorney;
- Perform various clerical duties such as record-keeping, document copying, e-Filing, etc.; and,
- Other duties as assigned.
ESSENTIAL JOB SKILLS AND ABILITIES REQUIRED
Candidates must possess the following:
- Bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university and either: paralegal certificate/degree in paralegal studies from an ABA-approved institution OR bachelor’s degree and at least 3 years of experience in litigation support, ideally in one or more areas of poverty law outlined above in “Job Summary,” particularly housing and/or community organizing;
- Comfort with practicing trauma-informed legal advocacy: empathy, responsive listening, restraint from judgment, and demonstration of authentic care and concern;
- Ability to work with and have sensitivity to individuals in crisis and at-risk of homelessness;
- Commitments to race equity and community-centered work, and willingness to incorporate race equity principles and community-centered approaches in practice;
- Experience with data collection and creating reports;
- Work well as part of a team, but also be able to work independently;
- Strong written and oral communication skills;
- Detail-oriented and superior organizational skills; and
- Ability to commute throughout Los Angeles County.
Ability to read, write and speak fluently in Spanish is preferred.
START DATE AND COMPENSATION
This position is available immediately. Compensation is commensurate with experience. Excellent benefits package. This position is part of a special program created using designated funds. Please note that this position is contingent on ongoing funding.
Continuous until positions are filled.
We value lived experiences and experiences working with our clients across a range of settings. Please consider discussing such experiences in your cover letter, especially if they are not reflected in your resume. Email a cover letter, résumé, and list of references (in PDF format) to:
Lorraine A. López
Supervising Staff Attorney – HPLP
Please include “Paralegal” in subject line. No phone calls please.
Public Counsel is an Equal Opportunity Employer
All qualified applicants shall receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, national origin, ethnic group identification, ancestry, sex, age, marital status, political affiliation, condition of physical or mental disability, gender identity or sexual orientation, in accordance with requirements of Federal and State laws.
All qualified applicants with criminal histories will be considered in a manner consistent with the requirements of the Los Angeles Fair Chance Initiative for Hiring.