Temporary Staff Attorney

New York, NY
Consumer Protection Unit
Entry Level
About NYLAG:
Founded in 1990, NYLAG is a leading civil legal services organization combatting economic, racial, and social injustice by advocating for people experiencing poverty or in crisis. Our services include comprehensive, free civil legal services, financial empowerment, impact litigation, policy advocacy, and community partnerships. NYLAG exists because wealth should not determine who has access to justice. We aim to disrupt systemic racism by serving individuals and families whose legal and financial crises are often rooted in racial inequality. NYLAG goes to where the need is, providing services in more than 150 community sites (e.g. courts, hospitals, libraries) and on our Mobile Legal Help Center. During COVID-19, most of our services are virtual to keep our community safe. NYLAG’s staff of 350 impacted the lives of nearly 130,000 people last year.

Job description
NYLAG has an immediate opening for a temporary staff attorney in the Consumer Protection Unit to staff the Consumer Debt Volunteer Lawyer for the Day Program (VLFD), in the Bronx, Staten Island, and/or Queens.  The position is expected to be for a period of up to six months. VLFD is a limited representation court-based program, wherein attorneys and other volunteers represent debtor defendants in court for that day/appearance only. VLFD pairs the defendants with a volunteer attorney who can advocate on their behalf and prevent additional abuse and misrepresentations by creditors. The attorney hired for this position will have the unique opportunity to make a strong impact in an innovative, court-based program designed to increase pro se litigants’ access to justice in an important and evolving area of law.

Duties and Responsibilities
The attorney will primarily provide services on-site in the Personal Appearance Part of Bronx, Queens and/or Richmond County Civil Courts to directly handle consumer credit cases and provide direct oversight of attorneys and law students serving as volunteers in the Court for the Consumer Debt VLFD. Responsibilities include: Representing pro se litigants on a limited appearance basis for the day; providing support for all aspects of the litigation for the cases calendared in the court part for the day on behalf of consumer credit defendants including but not limited to: negotiating with opposing counsel, making oral arguments, reviewing stipulations negotiated by volunteers for VLFD, drafting and reviewing answers, orders to show cause, and other motions, affidavits and discovery demands prepared by the self-represented litigant and/or the volunteer lawyers. The attorney will also mentor and advise volunteer lawyers participating in the VLFD program. The attorney will work closely with the Bronx, Queens and Richmond County CLARO program, as well as local bar associations’ pro bono programs, to coordinate services, and will meet at least once weekly with the Project staff to review cases and strategy. The Staff Attorney will also work with NYLAG’s Special Litigation Unit in order to identify patterns and practices ripe for class action lawsuits in order to make a larger community and systemic impact.

When not working on the VLFD Project, the attorney will support other CPU staff and projects to expand access to services to consumers across New York City. This includes but is not limited to staffing intake sites, providing advice and representation, conduct research,  and provide community educational workshops.

  • Admission to the New York State bar. Those who passed the Bar and are only waiting admission to the Bar may apply but must indicate this on the cover letter, with an estimate on their admission date.
  • Demonstrated passion for social justice and public service, including a commitment to advance the rights of communities who have been historically oppressed and targeted.
  • Experience litigating in the Consumer Part, practicing consumer law, and with general litigation experience is highly preferred.
  • Federal court admission preferred.
  • Applicants must be willing to litigate in adversarial and charged environments and be fully prepared and understand the relevant law and court procedures needed to be successful.
  • High attention to detailed and organized.
  • Excellent communication, research, and writing skills.
  • Enjoy collaborating with others.
  • Commitment to and passion for serving vulnerable New Yorkers and populations of diverse backgrounds.
  • Able to manage multiple cases and projects at one time; excellent time management skills.
  • Applicants should be self-directed, dedicated to the work, and be committed to ongoing growth and learning.

NYLAG’s Commitment to Diversity and Inclusion
NYLAG is proud to be an equal opportunity employer. People of color, women, people with disabilities, immigrants, veterans, lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer people, and those with lived experiences in the communities we serve are strongly encouraged to apply.

Employment type:


Professional Level:

Entry Level

Salary Range:
NYLAG is a unionized workplace, and salaries are set pursuant to a collective bargaining agreement. The current salary range for this position is between        $75, 199 and $89,320, dependent on previous legal experience.
Benefits: Medical, dental, vision, 401k, life insurance, long term disability, commuter benefits, flexible spending accounts (FSA) for Medical and Dependent care.

Application Instructions: Please save resume and cover letter on one pdf. Applications without a cover letter will not be considered.

Covid Vaccination Policy: Please note, to safeguard the health and well-being of our employees and clients, NYLAG requires all employees to be fully vaccinated for COVID-19, unless a medical or religious exemption is approved.

NYLAG is committed to a hybrid work policy for staff whose work does not require their full-time presence in the office. NYLAG’s current policy is that most staff are required to work in NYLAG’s offices or do other in-person work at least two days each week. This policy is subject to change.

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