Prairie State Legal Services, Inc. is part of a statewide movement to prevent a surge in homelessness as a result of the pandemic and is seeking to add three new full-time attorneys to expand our legal services for low income renters as part of this unprecedented effort. The attorneys hired for this project will be part of an internal taskforce of more than 20 attorneys addressing rental housing issues within PSLS’s 36 county service area.
Under this program, PSLS staff are preparing and distributing legal information resources for renters, holding virtual presentations to inform residents and social service providers about the laws surrounding evictions and the special protections in place from State and Federal moratoriums, working with local courts to establish coordinated eviction responses in many communities including courthouse based services, reviewing and responding to proposed Illinois Supreme Court rules related to evictions, and are participating in defenses to legal attacks on the legality of the eviction moratoria. The COVID Housing Stability Project will initially focus exclusively on rental housing issues but may expand into home ownership issues in the future as foreclosures are expected to surge in 2022.
Among other duties as assigned, the Staff Attorneys in this project will:
- Provide a full range of 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
- Interview and provide services to applicants on-site at courthouse sites, outreach locations and the office
- Develop and maintain networking relationships with community agencies that serve the client population in targeted communities and with other local stakeholders
- Assist in developing community legal information and training
- Provide accurate and complete information for grant reporting to funders including documenting services in client case records
- Exhibit a high level of personal energy, organization, and commitment to the position and the PSLS mission
Salary and Benefits
The COVID Housing Stability Project Staff Attorney positions are full-time positions at 37.5 hours per week. PSLS offers a salary competitive with similar organizations. Our Staff Attorney salary scale starts at $50,000 per year for newly licensed attorneys and increases with each year of relevant experience. PSLS is committed to providing an excellent, comprehensive benefits package to its full-time employees that includes:
- Health insurance, including the opportunity to qualify for a wellness credit
- Dental insurance
- Vision insurance
- 403b Retirement Plan including employer contributions
- PTO that starts at 3 weeks/year and increases with additional years worked
- Paid sick leave
- 6 weeks of paid parental leave after one year of employment
- Extensive training and education program
- Currently admitted to the practice of law in the State of Illinois, or admitted in another state and eligible for reciprocity in Illinois. Consideration will be given to applicants who sat for the February 2021 Bar Exam.
- Experience with trial advocacy and negotiation strongly preferred
- Excellent oral/written communication, research skills, and computer competency
- Organizational and case management skills
- Strong interpersonal skills
- Ability to work effectively as a team member
- Demonstrated commitment and passion for serving disadvantaged populations, knowledge of poverty law, and experience providing services to low-income individuals preferred
- Some travel is necessary; valid driver’s license and/or reliable transportation is required
Please indicate “COVID Housing Stability Staff Attorney” in the subject line and email a letter identifying your office preference and explaining your interest and experience, resume, three references, and a short writing sample (no more than 10 pages) to [email protected].
Resumes accepted until positions are filled.
Prairie State Legal Services is committed to creating a diverse and inclusive working environment and is proud to be an equal opportunity employer. We recruit, employ, pay, and promote qualified applicants and employees without regard to race, ethnicity, color, religion, gender, gender identity, expression, or presentation, sexual orientation, national origin, genetics, disability, age, or any other legally protected status.
Prairie State Legal Services is a not for profit civil legal aid organization that has served northern and central Illinois for more than 40 years. We have a staff of over 175 persons including training and litigation staff with extensive experience. The COVID Housing Stability Project staff will be part of their local offices and will benefit from the expertise and community connections of the local staff along with program-wide resources. PSLS encourages its staff to use their creativity in developing strategies for reaching our client population and in working with other community agencies. We strive to provide an array of services responsive to the needs of our clients. More information is available on our website at www.pslegal.org.