Legal Fellowships & Internships

Legal Fellowships & Internships


Equal Justice Works Crime Victims Justice Corps

Montana Legal Services Association will host a fellow over two years as part of the Equal Justice Works Crime Victims Justice Corps. The fellowship should begin on or about June 1, 2018 and end May/June 2020.

The Equal Justice Works Crime Victims Justice Corps is a legal fellowship program designed to increase capacity and access to civil legal help for crime victims. A cohort of approximately sixty fellows are placed at nonprofit organizations across the country to provide direct representation to victims of crimes, including human trafficking, fraud/identity theft, campus sexual assault, and hate crime, and immigrant victims of crime with meritorious claims for immigration relief, and outreach and education to community partners. All fellows will incorporate crime victims’ rights enforcement into their practice and will receive training from the National Crime Victim Law Institute and other training and technical assistance providers.

This program is supported by an award from the U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Justice Programs, Office for Victims of Crime, Award Number 2017-MU-MU-K131, and private funding.

The fellow will be supervised by the Deputy Director for Advocacy and will be based in Helena or Billings, Montana.

Fellowship Description
The Equal Justice Works Crime Victims Justice Corps Fellow will:

  • Provide direct legal services to crime victims/survivors across the state of Montana to address the range of civil legal issues that arise from the victimization.
  • Provide crime victims’ rights enforcement.
  • Conduct outreach and education activities, provide referrals, and leverage pro bono resources.
  • Contribute to programmatic reporting required under the federal award.
  • Compose correspondence, pleadings and other documents.
  • Research the law and prepare memoranda.
  • Handle all aspects of a client’s legal matter, including preparing pleadings, negotiation, mediation and trial work.
  • Develop and maintain specialized knowledge in the areas of law most relevant to crime victims, including: fraud and financial scams; identity theft; financial or material exploitation; bankruptcy or other financial problems related to fraud and exploitation; property crimes, probate, estates, taxes, exploitation, or theft by caretakers or others; deception to gain control of assets; consumer fraud in debt collection, imposter scams, telephone and mobile services, banks and lenders, prizes, sweepstakes, and lotteries; campus sexual assault; hate crimes needs such as housing, medical assistance, education, and employment; U-Visa and T-Visa needs of immigrant crime victims who are the survivors of domestic violence and sexual trafficking; and needs of other crime victims, including domestic violence, dating violence, and stalking.
  • Ability to travel, occasionally overnight.
  • Collaborate with other Equal Justice Works Crime Victims Justice Corps Fellows.
  • Actively participate in mandatory in-person training programs including two-day Crime Victims Justice Corps Victim Law Boot Camp training on June 28-29, 2018 in Washington, DC; learning event at the end of the Fellowship; annual three-day Equal Justice Works Leadership Development Training in October/November 2018 and 2019 in Washington, DC; and training calls with the National Crime Victim Law Institute.
  • Other duties as assigned by the Deputy Director for Advocacy or the Executive Director.

Qualifications

 The ideal candidate will possess the following qualifications:

  • JD Degree with above average academic achievement.
  • Licensed to practice law in Montana, or eligible for admission by transfer of a Uniform Bar Examination score. UBE transfer applicants must complete the Montana Law Seminar no later than July 26, 2018.
  • A demonstrated commitment to public interest work and desire to assist crime victims.
  • Strong writing, communication, interpersonal, and organizational skills.
  • An ability to provide victim-centered, trauma-informed, and culturally competent legal assistance to crime victims/survivors.
  • An ability to work collaboratively in a variety of contexts and with multiple organizations to facilitate comprehensive services to crime victims/survivors.
  • Ability to begin the fellowship by on or about June 1, 2018 and serve for 2 years
  • Those with legal experience in crime victims’ rights enforcement and victim service are strongly encouraged to apply.
  • Law school clinic, externship, summer or other relevant practice experience a plus.
  • Creativity and willingness to take on challenging projects.
  • Experience with using technology including document assembly, websites and video conferencing, preferred.

Salary and other support

The Fellow will receive an annual salary, as well as including health, dental, vision, and life insurance, retirement and educational loan repayment assistance.  Interested applicants should contact Krista Partridge at hiring@mtlsa.org with any follow-up questions.

Application Instructions:

Send a letter of interest, resume, three professional or academic references, and writing sample to hiring@mtlsa.org.

Application Deadline: May 9, 2018, but candidates are encouraged to apply as soon as possible.

Montana Legal Services Association is an Equal Employment Opportunity Employer and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, national or ethnic origin, age, disability or veteran status.


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.