This Staff Attorney position will provide poverty law services to domestic violence victims throughout the state of Montana, concentrating their work in Carbon, Stillwater, Sweet Grass, Park and Meagher counties. Poverty law services will primarily be in the area of family law and orders of protection, although other areas of law, such as housing, public benefits and consumer, will be addressed as appropriate to the client.
- Interview, meet with, advise, and represent eligible clients on civil matters.
- Handle all aspects of legal representation including client contact, pleading preparation, research, file maintenance, hearing and trial work.
- Work primarily in the area of family law, but may also assist with other poverty law issues including consumer, housing, employment, public benefits, and probate.
- Develop law-related educational programs and materials directed to the client community or agencies regarding the legal rights and responsibilities of domestic violence victims.
- Develop and maintain specialized knowledge of the legal needs of domestic violence victims, and of general poverty law issues.
- Provide services ranging from brief counsel and advice, to more extended representation on core legal issues affecting MLSA clients.
- Work with other MLSA staff to recruit, train and support pro bono attorneys when appropriate.
- Participate in MLSA’s statewide initiatives and impact work, and implement grant and contract requirements through casework.
- Other duties as assigned by the Supervising Attorney, Deputy Director, or Executive Director.
- Law Degree and current license to practice law in Montana.
- Prior legal services experience preferred, particularly experience working with domestic violence victims.
- A willingness to assume a varied case load.
- An understanding of the civil legal needs of low-income people, including the unique needs of populations that experience particular barriers to access to justice systems.
- Knowledge of substantive legal areas affecting low income people.
- Ability to effectively communicate, to motivate others, and to work collaboratively with diverse groups of people with varying perspectives, and experience and expertise.
- Ability and willingness to learn and integrate new technologies and methodologies to efficiently perform responsibilities.
- A willingness to establish and maintain effective relationships with clients, the public, judges, court personnel and the bar.
- Ability and willingness to work cooperatively and collegially within a decentralized statewide law firm.
- Excellent written and verbal communication skills.
- Excellent attention to detail.
- Ability to work independently in a deadline-oriented environment.
- A “can do” attitude and a willingness to pitch in where needed.
- Strong commitment to insuring equal access to justice.
- Proficient at the use of technology, including, but not limited to, word processing, spreadsheets, internet-based programs and computer-based legal research.
- Overnight and day travel is required, both in and out of the state of Montana.