This Staff Attorney will sit in Safe Horizon offices located in the Bronx Family Court. The Staff Attorney, using autonomy and independence, provides legal representation to domestic violence victims in matrimonial, family offense, custody, visitation and child support cases in Bronx County. The Staff Attorney represents victims in all stages of litigation. The Staff Attorney also conducts presentations and trainings to internal and external audiences including community-based organizations and other service based providers on domestic violence and the law.
Essential Job Functions:
· Works independently to litigate family and matrimonial cases in Bronx Family Court, Bronx Supreme Court, and Bronx Integrated Domestic Violence Court
· Conducts regular legal clinics at Safe Horizon’s Bronx Family Court and Community Programs
· Conducts in depth interviews with victims of domestic violence, compiles history and investigates to corroborate allegations.
· Drafts all legal documents and attends all court appearances with victims of domestic violence.
· Prepares witnesses and client for court appearances.
· Responsible for assisting clients with a holistic range of services, including advocacy on non-legal issues.
· Exercises complete decision-making authority over each client’s case.
· Provides legal information, advocacy and referrals to individual who reach out to the DVLP helpline.
· Maintains clients’ case files and all internal data logs. Responsible for their own clerical case-related work.
· Maintains monthly statistical reports documenting case representation, provision of legal advocacy and referrals.
· Provides statistical and narrative data to funder.
· Conducts presentations and trainings to community-based organizations and other service providers to promote the mission of the agency.
· Attends meetings to discuss policy issues affecting client population.
· Develops and maintains relationships with individuals, organizations and government agencies within the domestic violence and legal community in New York City.
· Participates in the Lawyer’s Committee against Domestic Violence and other advocacy/policy groups.
· Serves as an internal resource to Safe Horizon staff, answering questions and making educational presentations.
· Contributes to the employment, supervision and oversight of support staff, volunteers and student interns.
The Staff Attorney does not have any direct reports.
Safe Horizon court programs staff
External decision makers
Attorneys from other not for profit organizations, with related missions
Private and not for profit community-based service providers
District Attorney’s office
Family Justice Centers
Representatives from law schools
Representatives from the Bar Association
Prior litigation experience in family or matrimonial proceedings preferred. Must possess strong oral and written communications skills, including the ability to convey legal concepts to lay people. The ability to write routine reports, court documents, case notes, pleadings and correspondence in a clear, concise and effective manner is essential. Must be creative and have critical thinking skills. Must be a persuasive and effective public speaker. Prior experience organizing and executing group trainings and information exchanges is preferred. Must possess demonstrated appropriate communications skills with client populations, colleagues and court staff. Problem-solving, prioritizing, time management, team-building and organizational skills are also essential. Must be familiar with legal services, resources and procedures available in New York City. Must possess a knowledge and understanding of economic issues facing domestic violence victims, including but not limited to housing, public benefits and child support. Strong networking skills and the ability to develop and maintain relationships with various individuals, organizations and government agencies is essential. A strong commitment to working exclusively with victims of domestic violence is required.
Must have a Doctor of Jurisprudence degree from an accredited law school, be admitted to the New York State Bar and have two to four years of related experience. New graduates who have completed an approved fellowship or judicial clerkship may be considered. Must have prior experience in and/or thorough knowledge of family law, crisis intervention, criminal justice system, working with victims of domestic violence, sexual assault, stalking, family violence, poverty law, feminist law and/ social justice work. Bilingual oral and written skills strongly preferred. Demonstrated commitment to social justice, community empowerment, and anti-racism strongly preferred