Immigration Legal Assistant
IRC's immigration legal services program serves more than 14,000 individuals in 23 sites throughout the U.S. each year, providing accessible and critical legal representation and advice to immigrants and their families in order to acquire the highest level of immigration status available, keep families together, access their full rights, and successfully integrate in the U.S.
The position supports legal practitioners (attorneys and/or Department of Justice (DOJ) accredited representatives) in representing clients before United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) and conducting community-based orientations and workshops. IRC is a lead agency responding to the Afghan evacuation and will be serving thousands of Afghan parolees this year. This position will focus on supporting legal services for Afghan parolees, which will include a range of services such as orientations and individual screenings, family-based immigrant petitions and adjustments of status, Special Immigrant self-petition-based adjustments of status, and affirmative asylum, as well as other avenues for seeking permanent status that may become available. It is encouraged that staff hired in this role will work towards DOJ accreditation with support from IRC’s Immigration Technical Unit based at IRC Headquarters.
· Under the supervision of a licensed or accredited legal practitioner, provide clients with information about immigration benefits available through USCIS, work with clients to gather documents, and assist clients to complete applications.
· Respond to inquiries from clients regarding case status and submit inquiries on case status to USCIS and/or Department of State (DOS).
· Process correspondence from USCIS and DOS, including notifying clients, assisting clients to prepare responses to notices or evidence requests as appropriate, and following up with relevant parties.
· Maintain accurate and up-to-date physical and electronic files and detailed case notes, enter required data in a timely manner, meet all case reporting requirements within established timelines and standards, and assist in the completion of statistical, narrative, and financial reports.
· Represent the IRC with clients, community members, and partners by receiving and returning phone calls and emails, scheduling appointments, supporting events (including group processing events), and conducting outreach for legal services.
· Maintain strict client confidentiality and observe all other ethical practices/obligations as outlined in IRC’s Immigration Program Policies Manual.
· Pursue Department of Justice accreditation by successfully completing all vital training.
· Manage intern and volunteer support as needed.
· Bachelor’s degree in relevant field.
· Demonstrated success working and communicating effectively in a multi-cultural environment and with Limited English Proficient populations.
· Able to work effectively in a team environment, as well as take independent initiative
· Excellent attention to detail and strong organizational skills
· Proficient in Microsoft Office applications (Word, Excel, Outlook) and comfortable utilizing online software and programs.
· Excellent communication skills with proficiency in written and spoken English is required.
· Proficiency or fluency in Dari, Pashto, Farsi, Russian, and/or Ukrainian strongly preferred.
· Demonstrated dedication to immigrant rights, social justice, and/or human rights based on work experience, volunteer service, or educational activities.
Preferred experience & skills:
· Previous experience with immigration legal or social services is strongly preferred.
· Familiarity with immigration software and experience with data entry and management are a plus.
· Community-based outreach and/or work promoting immigrant rights experience is preferred.
· Standard office environment with occasional opportunities to participate in community outreach and legal assistance events.
· May require occasional weekend and/or evening work.
COVID-19 Vaccination Requirement: In accordance with IRC’s duty to provide and maintain a workplace that is free of known hazards and our commitment to safeguard the health of our employees, clients, and communities, IRC requires candidates who are selected for interview to furnish proof of vaccination against COVID-19 in order to be considered for this position.
Commitment to Diversity and Inclusivity: IRC is committed to building a diverse organization and a climate of inclusivity. We strongly encourage applications from candidates who can demonstrate that they can contribute to this goal.
Equal Opportunity Employer: We are an equal opportunity employer and value diversity at our company. We do not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, color, national origin, sex, gender, gender expression, sexual orientation, age, marital status, veteran status, or disability status. We will ensure that individuals with disabilities are provided reasonable accommodation to participate in the job application or interview process, to perform essential job functions, and to receive other benefits and privileges of employment. Please contact us to request accommodation.
We offer a comprehensive and highly competitive set of benefits. In the US, these include: 10 sick days, 10 US holidays, 20-25 paid time off days depending on role and tenure, medical insurance starting at $120 per month, dental starting at $7 per month, and vision starting at $5 per month, FSA for healthcare and commuter costs, a 403b retirement savings plans with immediately vested matching, disability & life insurance, and an Employee Assistance Program which is available to our staff and their families to support counseling and care in times of crisis and mental health struggles.