Economic Justice - Consumer Protection Staff Attorney

Description:
Bay Area Legal Aid (BayLegal) works with our clients to advocate for their legal rights and remove legal barriers to health, safety, and stability through representation, legal advice and information, referrals, community education, and advocacy for low-income individuals and families throughout seven Bay Area counties.

As a regional anti-poverty civil law firm that has been serving our local communities since the 1960s, we are committed to working alongside our clients and community partners to address inter-generational poverty and social inequality. We have built upon our origins as separate neighborhood legal services organizations into a regional non-profit law firm with over 150 employees. We practice in multiple legal substantive areas to help our clients protect their livelihoods, their health, and their families. BayLegal works to prevent domestic violence and sexual assault, increase economic stability, protect consumers, expand access to healthcare, and prevent homelessness. Our clients include the working poor, families with children, foster youth, seniors, immigrants, veterans, individuals impacted by the criminal and juvenile legal system and persons with disabilities. By serving clients at a wide range of access points, including our six regional county offices, mobile advocacy, community-based clinics and service sites, and nationally recognized legal hotlines, BayLegal has a unique viewpoint to identify patterns of illegal practices and barriers to our clients’ rights in need of broader advocacy and potential impact litigation. BayLegal strives to create equitable access to resources and services to build a foundation from which our clients can thrive.

BayLegal strives to address the immediate crisis an individual or family may be experiencing and the underlying and compounding legal issues that create barriers to long-term stability and opportunities. We believe that all people should be treated with respect and have the resources they need to meet their goals. To that end, we engage in civil legal representation, social work, community collaborations, and systemic advocacy, in partnership with the communities we serve.

BayLegal’s Consumer Law Practice focuses on halting unfair and deceptive business practices in consumer financial products and protecting the rights of low-income consumers. Our Consumer Team targets its advocacy efforts on urgent issues identified by the community we serve. Post-pandemic, this includes addressing the impact of ballooning family debt incurred from COVID’s financial fallout, including court enforced debt collection and credit barriers to obtaining housing. The position is part of BayLegal’s regional consumer practice and will require limited travel throughout the Bay Area. We will consider the applicant’s convenience in deciding the primary location for the position at one of BayLegal’s Bay Area Offices. See Temporary COVID-19 Remote Work described below.

As a BayLegal Attorney, you will have the opportunity to:
  • Learn and assist with the diverse legal needs of underserved and vulnerable communities in the Bay Area;
  • Represent low-income consumers in state and federal court in consumer law cases at every stage of litigation, including motions, discovery, ADR, and trials;
  • Staff community-based clinics to provide assistance with consumer protection issues, including unfair or abusive debt collection and credit reporting, student loan relief, and foreclosure.
  • Identify systemic problems that affect our clients’ rights and address these challenges through affirmative litigation and policy work;
  • Collaborate with the local and national consumer justice community.
  • Provide workshops and technical assistance to community partners and client community on consumer and economic rights.
  • Develop relationships and engage in collaboration with a range of public and private community partners, including governmental agencies, courts, and community-based organizations, to ensure integrative services and address systemic barriers facing BayLegal’s client community.
  • Work with BayLegal’s development, grants and contracts, and communications team to promote BayLegal’s mission and resource development; and
  • Engage in other tasks and projects that further the interest of furthering BayLegal’s mission and operations as a non-profit.

Requirements/Qualifications/About the Successful Candidate:
  • Humility in working with colleagues and clients across the spectrum of diversity, including race, ethnicity, gender identity, sexual orientation, socio-economic status, immigrant status, religious identity, physical and mental disabilities, and/or limited English proficiency.
  • Membership in good standing in the California State Bar or eligible for the Multijurisdictional Practice (MJP) Program and willing to sit for the California Bar.
  • Bilingual ability in Spanish, Mandarin or Cantonese preferred.
  • Strong personal work ethic and ability to organize time, manage diverse activities, and meet critical deadlines with minimal supervision.
  • Excellent writing, editing, and proof-reading skills.
  • Strong interpersonal skills and an ability to work collaboratively with a dynamic team.
  • Curious and self-directed with an ability to anticipate what needs to be done.
  • Ability to simultaneously manage multiple projects while maintaining a firm grasp of individual project details.

Temporary COVID-19 remote work:
Due to the COVID-19 Pandemic, all BayLegal employees are primarily working remotely. While BayLegal has implemented detailed health and safety protocols to minimize risk of exposure and has an evolving plan for reopening our local offices, we anticipate remaining primarily remote throughout much of 2021. All employees are expected to be available to travel to BayLegal offices and services locations as needed and in compliance with public health advisories. Employees are expected to reside in California and must be able to commute to the physical BayLegal base location or service delivery location within the San Francisco Bay Area.

While BayLegal remains primarily remote, all employees are issued BayLegal computers and provided appropriate supplies. BayLegal has implemented and continues to explore additional technologies to make working remotely as efficient and connected as possible. All employees receive a flat-rate monthly amount to reimburse for work-related use of personal IT equipment, including internet, and home. BayLegal is open to providing flexibility regarding work schedules and part-time or full-time employment to the extent feasible for the position.

Compensation and Benefits:
We offer a diverse, family friendly environment, and compensation based on competitive public interest salaries along with a generous benefits package. BayLegal’s benefits package includes 100% employer-covered medical, dental, and life insurance for employees and up to 40-50% for dependents; long-term disability insurance; stipends for bilingual employees whose language skills are used in the provision of work tasks; student debt repayment program; dependent childcare employer contribution program, and 401k retirement plan following first year. Paid leave policy includes: sick leave; parental leave; 14 holidays each year and vacation (starting at 13 days and increasing with additional years of employment). This is a union position (Bay Area Legal Aid Workers “BALAW”), and the salary scale can be found on our website https://baylegal.org/get-involved/employment-opportunities/.

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