Founded in 1990, NYLAG is a leading civil legal services organization combatting economic, racial, and social injustice by advocating for people experiencing poverty or in crisis. Our services include comprehensive, free civil legal services, financial empowerment, impact litigation, policy advocacy, and community partnerships. NYLAG exists because wealth should not determine who has access to justice. We aim to disrupt systemic racism by serving individuals and families whose legal and financial crises are often rooted in racial inequality. NYLAG goes to where the need is, providing services in more than 150 community sites (e.g. courts, hospitals, libraries) and on our Mobile Legal Help Center. During COVID-19, most of our services are virtual to keep our community safe. NYLAG’s staff of 300 impacted the lives of nearly 90,000 people last year.
New York Legal Assistance Group uses the power of the law to help New Yorkers experiencing poverty or in crisis combat economic, racial, and social injustice. We address emerging and urgent needs with comprehensive, free civil legal services, financial empowerment, impact litigation, policy advocacy, and community partnerships. We aim to disrupt systemic racism by serving clients, whose legal and financial crises are often rooted in racial inequality.
Values that guide us
- We reduce the effects of poverty by providing high quality, effective civil legal services.
- We strive to serve individuals and communities through a race equity lens to counteract systemic racism.
- We work to create a welcoming and inclusive work environment that reflects the communities we serve.
- We achieve systemic change through class actions, impact litigation and by advocating for just laws and policies.
- We partner with our clients to help them transform their lives and strengthen their communities.
- We address our clients ’multiple legal needs by collaborating across our practice areas.
- We are at the forefront of identifying and understanding New Yorkers’ most pressing legal needs, rapidly adapting to meet these needs with innovative programs and partnerships.
- We assess need broadly, recognizing that need is not a function of income alone.
- We collaborate with community organizations and engage pro bono attorneys and volunteers to serve a greater number of people with unmet civil legal needs.
- We teach and train the next generation of legal service professionals.
NYC’s Universal Access initiative has fully expanded the right to counsel to all New Yorkers facing eviction in communities burdened by systemic socioeconomic barriers. NYLAG’s Tenants’ Rights Unit (“TRU”) has multiple Staff Attorney positions available for bilingual attorneys who speak Spanish on its Manhattan team. About a third of TRU’s clients speak Spanish, so we are looking for attorneys who speak Spanish fluently to provide language-accessible legal services.
TRU is an integral part of NYC’s Right to Counsel Coalition to ensure New Yorkers in under-resourced communities who are at risk of eviction have a right to an attorney to represent them in Housing Court and certain administrative proceedings. TRU is looking for admitted attorneys or recent bar-exam takers who are passionate about public interest law and social justice and want to work closely with communities burdened by systemic socioeconomic barriers to prevent eviction and homelessness. Because the COVID-19 pandemic has disparately impacted the communities we represent, eviction prevention legal services are more critical now than ever. Through virtual proceedings that put tenants’ apartments in jeopardy, NYC Housing Court is reopening at an increasing clip and limited in-person appearances in select cases are beginning. TRU, which has an extremely committed, collegial, and hard-working team of about 60 staff attorneys, 12 paralegals, and 12 supervisors, is a great place to start or build your legal career and gain valuable litigation skills while combatting the threat of eviction and homelessness.
Duties and Responsibilities:
- Handle a full caseload of full representation non-payment and holdover proceedings in Housing Court (predominantly virtually for now), which involves extensive communication with clients, intense negotiations with opposing counsel, frequent motion practice, discovery and depositions, and significant advocacy with outside agencies on behalf of clients.
- Handle litigation before administrative agencies as necessary, including NYCHA termination of tenancy proceedings, DHCR matters, and proceedings where clients’ Section 8 vouchers are being terminated.
- Participate in court-based intake (which occurs by phone and/or Microsoft Teams during the pandemic) and client and community outreach initiatives.
- Admission to New York Bar or passage of a recent NY Bar Exam or its equivalent.
- Demonstrated commitment to public interest law and social justice.
- Excellent legal research and writing skills.
- The ability to speak, read, and write Spanish fluently.
- Litigation experience, including experience gained in law school clinics, internships, and externships.
- At least one year of experience representing tenants in NYC Housing Court.
NYLAG’s Commitment to Diversity and Inclusion
NYLAG is proud to be an equal opportunity employer. People of color, women, people with disabilities, immigrants, veterans, lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer people, and those with lived experiences in the communities we serve are strongly encouraged to apply.
$71,576 - $80,771, commensurate with experience, pursuant to collective bargaining agreement.
Benefits: Excellent benefits.
How to Apply: Please attach your cover letter and resume as a single PDF and name the file “Your Last Name, Your First Name NYLAG TRU Staff Attorney.”