Staff Attorney—Aging & Disabilities Unit, Community Legal Services of Philadelphia
Community Legal Services, Inc. of Philadelphia is the largest provider of free civil legal services in the Philadelphia area. CLS is locally and nationally renowned as a premier legal services provider dedicated to ensuring access to justice for all low-income individuals and communities. CLS has eight legal units covering a wide range of civil legal services. The Aging and Disabilities Unit is located at our North Philadelphia office.
Community Legal Services is seeking an attorney who will represent clients in cases involving home and community-based services, nursing home and personal care home issues, Medicare, guardianship, SSI non-disability issues, and other elder law concerns.
The Aging and Disabilities Unit helps low-income older adults (ages 60+) and younger people with disabilities to get public benefits that provide essential income and health coverage, including Medicaid, Medicare services and SSI. Many of our clients come to CLS for help accessing in-home long-term care services so that they can remain independent in their own homes instead of having to enter a nursing home. The Unit also represents clients who live in nursing homes or boarding homes that are violating their rights or providing poor quality care. Other clients seek our help because of disputes with the Social Security Administration concerning their SSI or Social Security benefits. The unit also handles cases to protect the rights of individuals subject to guardianship actions. Many of our clients are frail, and they are among the most vulnerable residents of the City.
This position will involve representation of individual clients in administrative hearings and court action as well as systemic advocacy involving litigation, policy advocacy and legislative advocacy.
The staff attorney will work collaboratively with others in the unit to identify systemic issues, and develop strategies to address them, as well as to zealously represent individuals. This position may also involve some supervision of interns and other staff, depending on experience.
Substantive knowledge and experience in elder law, guardianship, and/or health law is helpful but not required. Experience in representing and/or advocating for issues affecting people with disabilities and the older adult population is helpful, but not required. An understanding of the importance of advocacy for the needs of older adults and people with disabilities is essential.
CLS seeks applicants with the following qualifications:
- Demonstrated commitment to working with diverse populations
- Excellent negotiation and analytical skills
- Excellent client interviewing skills
- Litigation experience
- Experience and interest in policy and other forms of advocacy
- Excellent legal research and writing skills
- Excellent work ethic, organization, and communication skills
- Demonstrated commitment to public interest work
- Illustrate a high level commitment to racial justice advocacy
- Exhibit sound professional and legal judgment
- Experience supervising others
What to Include in your application:
Please include a cover letter, resume, three professional references and one brief writing sample (10 pages or less). Community Legal Services values a diverse work environment and strongly encourages women, people of color, people who identify as LGBTQ, people with disabilities, people who have experienced poverty or homelessness and people who have had prior contact with the juvenile, criminal, or child welfare systems to apply.
CLS invites all applicants to include in their cover letter a statement about how your unique background and/or experiences might contribute to the diversity, cultural vitality, and perspective of our staff and legal services practice.
CLS will accept applications on a rolling basis until the position is filled but applicants should apply as soon as possible. You can submit your application on CLS’s website online at:
- https:///www.clsphila.org/about-cls/available-positions/ OR
This is a full-time position covered by the collective bargaining agreement between Community Legal Services, Inc. (CLS) and the Philadelphia Legal Services Union N.O.L.S.W./Local 2320/UAW. The current minimum entry-level salary is governed by such agreement and is subject to change according to the provisions of the current collective bargaining agreement. Raises and benefits are also governed by that agreement. CLS offers a very generous and comprehensive benefits package.
Community Legal Services, Inc. is an equal opportunity employer. CLS, Inc. does not discriminate in the selection of employees on the basis of race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, sexual identity, genetics, age, national origin, disability, or veteran status. In addition to federal law requirements, CLS complies with all applicable state and local laws governing nondiscrimination in employment. This policy applies to all terms and conditions of employment, including recruiting, hiring, placement, promotion, termination, layoff, recall and transfer, leaves of absence, compensation and training.