Legal Internships

Legal Internships


Position Title:  Agricultural Worker Outreach Summer Intern

Location:  Based in Missoula, Helena, or Billings with extensive travel required

Term:  7 to 10 week Internship, between May 31 and August 31

Montana Legal Services Association (MLSA) is a non-profit, public interest law firm that provides free civil legal services to low-income people, including indigent agricultural workers and their dependents throughout Montana.

Working as a team, two Agricultural Worker Outreach Interns will conduct outreach with community partners, and with agricultural workers throughout Montana.  The interns may also develop outreach materials and provide legal assistance to agricultural workers under the supervision of experienced poverty law attorneys. Our clients may include foreign agricultural workers with federal H-2A visas and any other workers whose income derives from agricultural labor in Montana. Agricultural workers may experience a wide variety of legal problems, including wage disputes, unsafe working conditions, inadequate housing, and denial of access to public benefits and services. We will provide training to interns.

This position will require travel and frequent overnight, possibly multi-night, stays at outreach locations within Montana.

Specific Duties

  • Communicating with local organizations and businesses regarding MLSA services for agricultural workers.
  • Planning outreach events in local communities, in conjunction with other service providers
  • Participating in outreach events at county fairs, and other similar events
  • Developing, coordinating and making educational presentations in English and Spanish for agricultural workers, community members and service providers.
  • Communicating in oral and written Spanish with agricultural workers and service providers.
  • Conducting client interviews and assisting in client application processes.
  • Investigating legal claims.
  • Legal research and writing, including drafting outreach materials for future use.
  • Supporting attorneys with delivery of client services, pending litigation and projects.

Requirements

  • Interest in the provision of legal services to low income people and a commitment to protecting the legal rights of agricultural workers.
  • Confidence in speaking with various persons in various communities in Montana (such as local food bank staff, state employment office staff, clergy, community service providers, and potential clients) about the services that MLSA offers.
  • Ability to work effectively without daily contact from a supervisor.
  • Students or people with outreach experience preferred.  Includes law students, as well as undergraduate or graduate students.
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills.
  • Ability to work effectively and cooperatively with the other outreach intern.
  • The motivation and ability to be self-directed in advancing advocacy on behalf of agricultural workers in Montana.
  • High level of proficiency in oral and written Spanish.
  • Ability to work and travel on weekends.
  • Must have valid driver’s license, access to a reliable vehicle, and willingness to travel extensively throughout Montana.

To Apply:  Send a resume, three references, and a cover letter indicating level of Spanish competency to hiring@mtlsa.org. Video interviews, a portion of which will be conducted in Spanish, are available to applicants who are not within driving distance of an MLSA office.

Salary: $15.00-18.00 per hour DOE, plus reimbursement of approved work-related travel expenses. We will also welcome applicants who have outside funding and we are willing to consider internships for course credit in lieu of pay.

Submission Deadline:  Screening of applicants will begin on March 27, 2017. The positions will remain open until filled. The start date and length of the internship is negotiable, and will be coordinated between the two successful candidates for the intern positions.   The term must occur between May 31 and August 31, 2017.

Montana Legal Services Association is an Equal Opportunity Employer.


Law School Clinic

MLSA is proud to coordinate with the Alexander Blewett III (University of Montana) School of Law to provide a clinical educational opportunity for third year law students.  Students are placed in a MLSA office under the supervision of experienced attorneys and receive school credit for their work.  Follow this link to the law school website for more detailed information and requirements:

http://www.umt.edu/law/academics/clinics/mt-legal-services.php


Unaffiliated Internships

MLSA law student interns will work side by side with MLSA staff in an effort to provide, protect and enhance access to justice. MLSA law student interns will be exposed to various areas of poverty law and gain experience through:

  • Interviewing clients seeking advice or assistance.
  • Counseling and advising clients.
  • Negotiating with opposing parties and counsel.
  • Undertaking direct assistance and responsibilities to clients.
  • Drafting petitions, motions, pleadings, and other court documents.
  • Engaging in investigation and formal discovery.
  • Researching case-specific legal issues.
  • Making court appearances, including trials and appeals (if the intern is qualified under student practice rules).

Interns may be placed in Missoula, Billings, or Helena, depending on MLSA's current needs and available office space.  Projects may relate to housing, consumer law, self-help legal assistance, or other areas of law.

Qualifications:

Law student seeking an internship after his or her first or second year of law school.

Application materials:

  • Letter of interest
  • Resume
  • Three references
  • Writing sample

To Apply:

Submit a letter of interest, résumé, three references, and a writing sample to hiring@mtlsa.org.

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Please know that Google Translate may not translate correctly. Please ask MLSA about our translation and interpretation services.

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