Paralegal (Litigation)

Title: Paralegal (Litigation)

Location: Los Angeles or Washington D.C. (preferred), Remote considered

Type: Full-Time

Workplace: remote

Category: Legal


Founded in 1979, the National Immigration Law Center (NILC) is a leading non-profit organization (501(c)3) in the U.S. exclusively dedicated to defending and advancing the rights and opportunities of low-income immigrants and their loved ones. NILCs mission is grounded in the belief that everyone living in the U.S. regardless of race, gender/gender identity, immigration status, or economic status should have equal access to justice, resources, and educational and economic opportunities that enable them to achieve their full human potential. Together, NILC and the affiliated NILC Immigrant Justice Fund (IJF), a 501(c)4 organization, work to advocate more directly for federal immigration reform policies. NILC is committed to advancing its mission which intersects race, immigration status, and class through racial, economic, and gender justice and equity orientation.

Headquartered in Los Angeles with an office in Washington, DC, NILC seeks to achieve just laws and policies that address systemic inequities, create narrative and culture change for an inclusive and equitable society, and build a healthier and more powerful movement. For more information, please visit

NILC is at an exciting moment in its organizational trajectory, supporting our five-year strategic framework and scaling the organization and its work through influencing systems, policy advocacy at the federal and state levels, engaging in movement and power building, and narrative and culture strategies in addition to continuous improvements to our operational model. We are looking for entrepreneurial, results-driven, relationship builders who are committed to NILCs mission and values of racial justice & equity, valuing diversity, fostering partnerships & collaboration, encouraging respect & personal well-being, and striving for transparency, integrity, and honesty.

About the Position

The Paralegal provides administrative and litigation support for the Legal team. At the direction of the Paralegal Manager and attorneys, the Paralegal works on all aspects of litigation, including intake, preparation of initial drafts of lawsuits and exhibits, discovery, preparing trial binders, settlement, and executing federal and state court filings, administrative complaints, and immigration documents and applications.The Paralegal works with the Paralegal Manager and Legal Management Team to improve efficiency and productivity for the legal team, including working to manage software systems and the case docket.

The ideal candidate exhibits a strong commitment to NILCs mission which concentrates on the applied principles of diversity, equity, inclusion, and justice, and includes strong strategic mindset with progressive movement organizations and strong communication skills.

This role is a member of the Bargaining Unit.

The Paralegal will be responsible for driving success in the following key areas:

Specific Position Responsibilities

  • Act as the lead paralegal in high-impact legal cases, advocacy, and related campaigns.
  • Manage the lifecycle of assigned cases, and advise on best practices relating to document production, workflow management and the case team.
  • Participate in multi-strategy litigation, media and advocacy campaigns with internal teams and external partners.
  • Draft and finalize complaints, summons, substantive briefs, motions, [proposed] orders, exhibits, excerpts of record, appendices, transcripts, declarations, pro hac vice applications, responses to e-Discovery, etc., and coordinate document production in accordance with rules of the Federal, Appellate and U.S. Supreme Courts. (TOA, TOC and secondary authorities).
  • File briefs, motions, etc., in accordance with rules of the Federal, Appellate and U.S. Supreme Courts. (TOA, TOC and secondary authorities) and ensure timely and proper service.
  • Manage and maintain digital case files, ECF admissions and various charts/credentials, case management, (e.g., CLIO, FOIA, Everlaw, DocketBird, MS Teams, etc.)
  • Manage litigation docket and calendars for court deadlines, collaborating with the Legal Coordinator on weekly litigation calendar updates, various compliance charts, MCLE, and other calendaring.
  • Conduct factual research for the development of cases and related campaigns, including client intake, witness interviews, and drafting client declarations.
  • Conduct legal research using tools and resources such as WestlawNext, WestlawNext Drafting Assistant, Federal Rules of Civil Procedure (FRCP), The Bluebook: Uniform System of Citations, jurisdictional local court rules, appellate and U.S. Supreme Court procedures.
  • Assist with court hearing and trial preparation: by preparing exhibits, coordinating with witnesses, and assisting with the preparation of hearing/trial binders/digital documents in collaboration with the Legal Coordinator.
  • Support all aspects of discovery including preparation of drafts and final copy of discovery responses and coordination of document production in accordance with rules of the Federal and Appellate Courts.
  • Collaborate with legal team members (lead attorney) to draft materials for settlement of fees and costs and fees petitions and compile supportive documentation such as researching attorney and paralegal rates, recommending rates to lead attorney, and preparing Lodestar billing records and cost reports.
  • Outreach/establish rapport with potential individual and organizational plaintiffs.
  • Maintain solid working relationships with colleagues, counsel, clients, court staff, etc.
  • Conduct client communication/outreach by phone, writing, and in-person to share case progress, strategy, and developments.
  • Partner on amicus brief work including outreach, tracking and communication with potential amici, drafting statements of interest, and finalizing and filing briefs.
  • Attend court hearings including, but not limited to, status conferences and oral arguments, depositions, client meetings, and meetings with opposing counsel.
  • Draft and execute Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests in collaboration with attorneys: review and index documents; chart, and manage calendars, serve as corresponding agent.
  • Maintain professional growth and development through seminars, workshops, and professional associations to keep abreast of the latest developments in applicable law and other related areas per California Code, Business and Professions Code – BPC 6450.
  • Co-manage legal department calls, messages, voicemails, emails, and faxes including but not limited to technical assistance calls and calls from counsel and court employees, providing technical assistance on a rotating basis as needed.
  • Lead technical support for Legal team: Maintain, support, and troubleshoot existing Litigation Support applications and databases including MS Teams/Sharepoint, Clio and Everlaw, etc; manage data conversion into and out of litigation support systems; maintain and consult with internal and external IT professionals regarding VOIP phone system, emails, practice management software, and legal department files, and perform ongoing quality checks.
  • Design, maintain, and coordinate set-up and use of practice management software including Clio and Everlaw including developing support materials and training other staff members as needed in collaboration with Legal Coordinator, monitoring changes in litigation software & making recommendations to the Legal Management Team as appropriate.
  • Collaborate with project managers to research and recommend changes to litigation input processes such as case file management and practice management software that may be useful for attorneys and legal support staff.
  • Collaborate and maintain relationships with outside vendors such as translation services, process server services, court reporters, interpreters, and relevant IT Support.
  • Scan and process documents, data, images (including OCR images) and related material into litigation databases, case management applications, and practice management systems.
  • Participate in bi-weekly team and/or departmental meetings, case team meetings, rotating facilitator and notetaker roles.
  • Collaborate in cross-departmental teams of staff in integrated legal, media and advocacy campaigns, including with the Operations department.
  • May be a part of a larger cross functional project using the MOCHA framework/methodology

Supervisory Responsibilities:

  • May manage outside vendors, third party administrators, and consultants as needed.

Shared Organization Responsibilities

  • Champions NILC & IJFs mission of advancing the rights of immigrants with low income by demonstrating a commitment to human rights, and racial, economic, and social justice.
  • Attends and actively participates in NILC meetings at the organization, department, project, and individual level.
  • Develops relationships and supports NILC and IJF colleagues across all teams, recognizing that each individual brings a unique background and perspective to the work and assuming good intent from each other.
  • Follows through on commitments acting with a clear sense of ownership individually and collectively by taking personal responsibility for decisions, actions, and failures, establishing clear responsibilities and processes for monitoring work and measuring results, and designing feedback loops into work.
  • Learns quickly when facing new situations by experimenting to find fresh solutions, taking on the challenge of unfamiliar tasks, and extracting lessons learned from failures and mistakes.
  • Acts with integrity by following through on commitments, being direct and truthful, keeping confidences, and showing consistency between words and actions.
  • Commits to centering NILCs values of racial justice & equity, valuing diversity, fostering partnerships & collaboration, encouraging respect & personal well-being, and striving for transparency, integrity, and honesty in all decisions and actions.

In recognition of the fluidity of the work and ecosystem that NILC operates in, other duties may be assigned depending on organizational need.

What Were Looking for in This Role

  • Commitment to NILC & IJFs mission of advancing the rights of immigrants with low income and a demonstrated commitment to civil rights, human rights, racial, economic, and social justice, and equity, diversity, inclusion, and justice for all.
  • Collaborative, proactive, and action oriented working style with a strong service mentality promoting mutual accountability and inspiriting trust and confidence from colleagues, other NILC team members, and NILC leaders alike.
  • Commitment to a plaintiff-focused and community-based orientation to litigation that centers the lived experiences, voices, and perspectives of immigrants at the forefront of policy and legal campaigns.
  • Sound judgment in decision-making, high integrity, and utmost respect for confidentiality.
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills: ability to read, analyze, and interpret as well as draft documents such as reports, correspondence, and presentations for various audiences.
  • Self-starter with a strong ability to move daily tasks forward in alignment with NILCs broader organizational needs and goals.
  • Work collaboratively in a team, promoting mutual accountability and inspiriting trust and confidence from colleagues and business leaders alike.

Qualifications Required

  • Bachelors degree and paralegal certification required
  • 3 5+ years of paralegal and/or trial preparation at the federal district and appellate court levels
  • Advanced knowledge of PACER, NextGen e-filing systems, FRAP, and FRCP, and Supreme Court of the United States local rules.
  • Strong experience with and knowledge of practice management software and discovery software such as Clio and Everlaw.
  • Experience in social justice, civil rights, immigrants rights, or progressive social change preferred
  • Demonstrated ability to adapt to changing priorities, strategies, and circumstances.
  • Proficiency with in-office and virtual environments and software such as Outlook, MS Office, internet and legal research tools, and virtual collaboration tools.

Preferred Qualifications

  • 7+ years of paralegal and litigation experience at the federal district and appellate court levels
  • Experience in social justice, civil rights, immigrants rights, or progressive social change
  • Masters degree and paralegal certification a plus
  • Proficiency in non-English languages spoken by Latinx, Asian, Pacific Islander, African, Caribbean, and Arab communities preferred. Fluency in more than one language is desirable.

At NILC, we know that talented people may have different backgrounds or experiences, and if your education and experience doesnt exactly align with the above thats okay! NILC believes that diversity in all dimensions of the organization supports and bolsters the innovative thinkingessential to its successandis committed to providing equal employmentopportunityto allqualified applicants.NILCsgoal is for our people to reflect the communities in which we live and serve and to ensure representation of people of color,women,veterans, and individuals with disabilities in our organization.We encourage you to apply and let us know in your cover letter why you are qualified and the right fit for this role and NILC.

Work Environment

  • Location & Travel:
  • NILC’s offices are located in Washington, D.C. and Los Angeles, California. For this role, up to 25% of overnight interstate travel may be required; travel is typically quarterly to the NILC Washington, DC office or another location within the US for 3-5 nights at a time.
  • Compensation & Benefits:
  • NILCs compensation and benefits philosophy is to provide a competitive offering in the nonprofit sector and ensure equity across the organization. The salary range for this role is $64,864 – $72,072 a year.
  • Physical Demands:
  • Remaining in a stationary position, often standing, or sitting for prolonged periods
  • Communicating with others to exchange information.
  • Repeating motions, like typing or answering a phone, that may include the wrists, handsand/or fingers.

NILC is an equal opportunity employer; people of color and individuals from diverse backgrounds areencouragedto apply. NILC does not discriminate based on race, color, national origin, citizenship status, ethnic background, religion, political orientation, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, age, disability, or any other protected class. We consider all qualified applicants with criminal histories in a manner consistent with the requirements of the Los Angeles Fair Chance Initiative.