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Career Opportunity Details

Staff Attorney - Domestic Violence Victims Services/Immigration
Location: Waukegan
Hours: full-time

Prairie State Legal Services (PSLS) is a not-for-profit civil legal aid organization that provides civil legal aid services to the poor, elderly, and people with disabilities.  PSLS has 12 offices serving 36 counties throughout northern and central Illinois.  PSLS 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. 

JOB DESCRIPTION:  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.  The Staff Attorney will work with an attorney who has more than 10 years of legal experience in immigration law to assist immigrant victims of domestic violence and sexual assault, as well as other victims of domestic violence, to obtain the appropriate legal relief.  

RESPONSIBILITIES:  Among other duties as assigned, the Staff Attorney 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
  • 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
  • Represent clients for domestic violence orders of protection and related domestic case issues including U-visa, T-visa, VAWA-self petitions, and other family-based immigration relief
  • 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
  • Exhibit a high level of personal energy, organization, and commitment to the positon and the PSLS mission


  • Currently admitted to the practice of law in the State of Illinois, or admitted in another state and eligible for licensing within three months of the first date of employment with PSLS
  • Ability to prioritize and work with minimal supervision
  • Excellent time management, oral/written communication, and research skills
  • Strong interpersonal skills
  • Proficient in the use of Microsoft Office Suite and other computer applications as needed

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.

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.

APPLICATION DETAILS:  Please indicate “Staff Attorney – Waukegan” in the subject line and e-mail 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 and Program Administrator Connie Peterson at


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.

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