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Northwest Immigrant Rights Project | Seattle, WA

Northwest Immigrant Rights Project

Published 29 days ago




Northwest Immigrant Rights Project (NWIRP) is the only nonprofit organization providing comprehensive immigration legal services to immigrants with low income across Washington State. NWIRP promotes justice by defending and advancing the rights of immigrants through direct legal services, systemic advocacy, and community education.

NWIRP is seeking law student applicants for summer legal internships in its Seattle office. Internships are unpaid, but NWIRP will work with applicants to secure outside funding or academic credit.


Northwest Immigrant Rights Project is an equal opportunity employer committed to having a diverse staff, board, and volunteer base reflective of the communities we serve and that enhances our ability to create a vibrant environment where all members of the NWIRP community thrive. We strongly encourage applications from people of color, immigrants (including individuals who were formerly detained, undocumented, or who have navigated the immigration legal system), women, people with disabilities, members of the LGBT community, and other underrepresented and historically marginalized groups.

It is the policy of NWIRP to comply with all applicable federal, state, and local laws prohibiting employment discrimination. NWIRP is committed to providing a work environment free from discrimination and harassment. NWIRP does not discriminate on the basis of class, race, color, sex, marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity, veteran status, political ideology, age, creed, religion, ancestry, national origin, or the presence of any sensory, mental, or physical disability. Excepting any undue hardship, NWIRP will provide reasonable accommodations upon request for candidates taking part in all aspects of the selection process.


Under attorney supervision, interns will assist with case matters before the Immigration Court, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), and the Department of State consulates and embassies. Specific duties and responsibilities vary depending on office and unit placement. Generally, for all offices, interns’ responsibilities may include:

● Identifying legal issues and potential forms of relief for immigrants;

● Drafting legal briefs in support of applications for relief;

● Preparing applications, motions, and other filings with immigration courts and agencies;

● Drafting client declarations and gathering evidence in support of applications;

● Appearing in immigration court proceedings;

● Conducting intakes with individuals;

● Participating in workshops and other community education and outreach events; and

● Performing various administrative tasks as needed.


The internship is open to first, second, and third year law students. Applicants should have excellent written and oral communication skills, an interest in immigration law, an ability to work in a diverse and fast-paced work environment, and a commitment to advancing and defending the legal rights of low-income immigrants and refugees. Applicants proficient in secondary languages are strongly preferred.

Position are available in the following units:

● Asylum Unit: Helps people who face persecution in their home countries in applying for asylum, and assists asylees and refugees in applying for permanent resident status and petitioning for their family.

● Children & Youth Advocacy Program (CYAP): Serves immigrant children and youth to regularize their immigration status. A large percentage of CYAP’s clients are unaccompanied children from Central America and Mexico who are in removal proceedings. Attorneys with CYAP maintain diverse caseloads and assist young people to apply for various forms of immigration relief, including Special Immigrant Juvenile Status (SIJS), asylum, U-visas, T-visas, Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), and Adjustment of Status. CYAP attorneys also handle Washington state court proceedings related to a child’s eligibility for SIJS. Under the supervision of attorneys, an intern would manage a caseload, work directly with clients, assist with case preparation, and have the opportunity for court appearances in immigration or state court.

● Family Services Unit (FSU): Promotes family unity and stability by assisting with family visa applications and waivers. FSU focuses on the following types of cases: family-based visa petitions, adjustment of status, consular processing, waivers of grounds of inadmissibility, permission to reapply for admission, removal of conditions on residence, and general removal defense. FSU also hosts a monthly workshop, in English and Spanish, where we provide general information to the community about the family-visa petition process. The intern, under the supervision of an attorney, would manage a caseload, work directly with clients, and assist with case preparation. The legal intern may have the opportunity for court appearances in immigration court.

● Impact Litigation Unit: Works for systemic change through lawsuits in federal court. Attorneys in this unit maintain a diverse federal court caseload consisting of damages actions against state and federal officials, petitions for review, habeas corpus cases, and class-actions. Interns will typically conduct legal research, assist with document review, and help attorneys in the unit represent individuals in removal proceedings. Interns may also have the opportunity to draft a pleading (e.g., a complaint or motion) during the course of the summer.

● Naturalization Unit: Assists immigrants and refugees, particularly elderly and/or people with disabilities, as well as those with criminal convictions, obtain citizenship, including seeking disability waivers from the required English and civics tests.

● VAWA (Violence Against Women Act) Unit: Provides legal services to immigrant survivors of domestic violence, sexual assault, trafficking, and other crimes. Under the supervision of attorneys, summer interns will maintain their own caseload and provide direct representation to clients in petitioning for U visas, T visas, and other immigration benefits provided under the Violence Against Women Act. Interns may also assist attorneys representing clients who are in removal (deportation) proceedings.


Submit application (with cover letter, resume, and list of references) online at Full consideration will be given to applications received by January 3, 2020. All applications must be received by February 14, 2020. Offers are made on a rolling basis, so early submission is recommended. Transcripts and writing samples may be submitted upon request.

CONTACT: (Please do not submit application to this email.)




Northwest Immigrant Rights Project (NWIRP) is the only nonprofit organization providing comprehensive immigration legal services to immigrants with low income…

Details at a glance

  • On-site Location
  • Academic Credits


615 2nd Ave, Ste 400, Seattle, WA 98104-2244

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