CLD Legal Assistant II

Metropolitan Public Defender Service Inc

Job Description


MPD has been on the cutting edge of public defense since our inception in 1971 as a non-profit law firm. MPD is the largest single provider of trial level public defense services in the state of Oregon, with offices in both Multnomah and Washington counties. For more information on MPD and our work visit:

Community Law (CL) is the civil law division of MPD. CL’s specialty is diminishing the downstream effects of criminal justice system involvement. We serve people from the community who have previously encountered the criminal justice system, as well as other vulnerable populations in Portland and Multnomah County, to remove barriers to housing and economic stability. We also advocate for systemic changes to help Oregonians previously involved in the criminal justice system. Some of our efforts include developing county-wide programs to reduce court debt and legislative advocacy to widen statutory access to criminal record clearing.

In working with our clients, we evaluate their circumstances for other legal issues posing barriers to opportunity and stability. When beneficial, we will provide a fuller range of civil legal services. We partner with government agencies and organizations to serve our clients, working together to help clients navigate the legal system, remove barriers to economic opportunities, and deliver justice.

CL is currently searching for a Legal Assistant II to join our Civil Team. The ideal candidate will demonstrate a commitment to civil rights and a dedication to address systemic injustices within the immigration and criminal systems.

The legal assistant’s responsibilities will include:

  • Drafting immigration petitions
  • Communicating with clients, helping coordinate appointments, and conducting intakes
  • Drafting declarations and motions
  • Compiling evidence
  • Compiling and mailing letters and immigration applications
  • Maintaining electronic client files
  • Entering data in our management database
  • Requesting records and communicating with outside agencies
  • Translating documents and interpreting with clients as needed
  • Assisting with fine and fee reduction via our Legal Services Day program
  • Preparing expungement paperwork
  • Other duties as assigned

This position pays $34,845.98 - $47,988.46 per year. Staff are members of a union. This is a full time (1.0 FTE) non-exempt position. In addition to compensation, MPD also offers:

  • Medical (choice of PPO or HDHP), Dental and Vision – 100% employer-paid-for employee-only coverage
  • Flexible Spending Account (FSA) or Health Savings Account (HSA)
  • Basic Life, STD, LTD and AD&D – 100% employer-paid
  • 401(K) – MPD will contribute 6% of annual salary with full vesting after the completion of 5 years of service
  • PTO – 24 hours upon hire. Accrue 80 hours/year and increase to 120 hours/year starting at 24 months.
  • 10 paid holidays + 2 floating holidays (summer & winter)
  • 4 Mental Health Days per year
  • Sick Leave – 48 hours upon hire + 48 hours after the completions of six months of employment and 96 hours each service anniversary

Position Qualifications

  • Ability to work independently and problem solve.
  • Strong organizational skills and attention to detail;
  • Ability to work well under pressure and as part of a team;
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills.

Position Preferences

  • Experience working and interacting with immigrant communities and/or children.
  • Demonstrated commitment to immigrants’ rights and serving low-income persons;
  • Prior experience in nonprofit legal services;
  • Experience working with individuals of diverse cultural, geographic, and economic backgrounds, including individuals with a history of incarceration/immigration detention and/or trauma.

Work Environment:

  • CL fosters a work environment that is friendly, cooperative, and respectful.
  • CL has a hybrid work environment, with the option to work in our downtown Portland office if the legal assistant desires or if required for court filings, meeting clients, and/or other administrative tasks.
    • Applicants must reside in Oregon or be willing to relocate.

Diversity and Inclusion: At MPD, we do not just accept difference; we value it and support it to create a culture of dignity and respect for all our staff.

MPD is proud to be an Equal Opportunity Employer. Qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, age, disability, military status, national origin, or any other characteristic protected under federal, state, or applicable local law.

Accommodation under the Americans with Disabilities Act: We gladly provide reasonable accommodation to anyone whose specific disability prevents them from completing an application or participating in this recruitment process. Please contact Human Resources in advance to request assistance.

Under Oregon Law, qualifying veterans may apply for veterans’ preference.

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