Legal Assistant at Justice in Motion
Justice in Motion protects migrant rights by ensuring justice across borders.
In the face of overwhelming legal and practical barriers, many migrants who have suffered exploitation or abuse at the hands of employers or government officials give up their rights after leaving the United States. Other migrants who flee abuse, violence, and persecution are unable to remain in safety due to lack of evidence to support their claims.
These migrants need “portable justice” – the right and ability to access justice across borders. Justice in Motion is dedicated to ensuring portable justice through legal, educational, and policy initiatives in the U.S., Canada, Mexico, and Central America. Essential to this transnational model is our Defender Network, a unique partnership of on-the-ground human rights organizations in Mexico and Central America. Justice in Motion makes sure that wherever migrants go, their rights will follow.
The Legal Assistant role is a great opportunity for someone who enjoys working in key administrative roles to keep everything moving behind the scenes, and understands that others are relying on them for high-quality work. The Legal Assistant regularly interacts with members of the Justice in Motion Defender Network and as such the candidate we seek must have professional-level Spanish (written and spoken), but does not need a legal background. Other important elements are skills in task management and organization, facility with spreadsheets, a willingness to learn new things and systems, and excitement about the role of international collaboration in the pursuit of justice for migrants across borders.
Note: Justice in Motion does not represent clients directly.
Details: The Legal Assistant is a full-time, non-exempt position that reports to the Legal Director and begins as soon as possible, ideally in March. This is a union position, and will be covered by Justice in Motion’s collective bargaining agreement.
Location and Travel: This is a remote position and can be based anywhere in the U.S., with work hours aligned with the Eastern Time Zone. When safe to do so, travel to Central America/Mexico once or twice a year and occasional travel within the U.S. will be likely.
Salary and Benefits: Salary is based on a union scale, with a starting salary of at least $43,000, negotiable depending on experience. Justice in Motion provides a comprehensive benefits package and a generous amount of leave.
This is an important position on a small team, and the duties will evolve over time. The primary areas of responsibility include:
- Supporting the Legal Action team in facilitating case collaborations with our partners in the US and abroad, including:
- Entering case information in database
- Responding to email and text messages
- Editing and completing forms
- Communicating with lawyers in the US and members of the Justice in Motion Defender Network in Central America and Mexico
- Reviewing and processing time and cost records for invoicing
- Using a task management system to track tasks and complete them on deadline
- Making evaluation calls
- Taking notes and writing case summaries (in Spanish and English)
- Assisting with strategic and creative project-based work, aiming to design collaborations which meet migrants’ emergent needs for access to justice
- Administrative and General Support for the Legal Action program
- Supporting logistics for Legal Action activities and events
- Providing administrative support for both the Legal Director and the Legal Manager
- Managing and entering data in case management system, including running reports
- Scheduling meetings
- Creating forms, templates, and presentations
- Reviewing Excel documents and handling minor bookkeeping tasks
- Researching topics related to core work goals and objectives
- Attending external webinars on behalf of the Legal Action team and taking notes
- Collaborating with Finance Director on payments and invoices
- General Support for the Organization
- Providing logistical support on behalf of the Legal Action in cross-departmental projects
- Participating in organization meetings, trainings, events, and activities
Ideal Candidate Profile
- Spanish fluency in a professional setting: This person is either a native speaker, or has significant experience using Spanish professionally, especially in writing. Can easily switch back and forth between English and Spanish with comprehension nearing 100%
- Cross-cultural experience: This is someone who has lived or worked with people from many cultures and within diverse communities and thrives in those environments. They enjoy being able to connect with a wide variety of people, and easily demonstrate curiosity and empathy
- Loves working behind the scenes: This person gets the importance of following simple and effective systems that make everyone’s life easier, especially in a remote work environment, and making sure people are taken care of.
- Is an excellent manager of tasks and details: This is someone who is obsessed with meeting deadlines, uses simple tools to follow through on action items, and is able to multitask. They love keeping track of the smallest details and maybe even keep spreadsheets to stay organized in their personal life!
- Proactive communicator: This person excels at confirming what’s being requested, checking for understanding, communicating progress regularly, and raising potential issues before they become major problems. They welcome feedback, and are oriented toward the larger success of the work.
- Tech-savvy: This is someone who easily picks up and adapts to new technologies and systems, can quickly figure out their way around a database, and knows how to use video and chat apps to find the best way to connect. Must be great with Excel and Word, GSuite, Adobe Acrobat, and basic document management. Salesforce or database experience is a plus.
- Patience and adaptability: This is someone who knows people operate in different ways, and takes the time needed to work with each individual, and follow up appropriately. They are able to adapt to and thrive amidst changing circumstances, and have a demonstrated ability to learn new concepts. This person appreciates creative planning and adjusting to meet new needs.
- Skill with data management and math: This person has performed simple bookkeeping tasks and knows how to run basic Excel formulas and ensure a high degree of accuracy.
- Experience managing confidential information: This person has excellent judgment and has references who will attest to their high level of maturity, trustworthiness, integrity, and experience working with sensitive information. They may have worked in fields such as social work, medicine, law, or education.
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