120 South LaSalle Street, Suite 900
For more than 50 years, LAF has provided people living in poverty in metropolitan Chicago with comprehensive free legal services to resolve non-criminal issues. Each year LAF’s full-time attorneys and staff help resolve civil legal problems, including domestic violence, consumer fraud, and unfair evictions. As advocates for people living in poverty, LAF witnesses how structural racism thwarts the health and stability of low-income communities and perpetuates the cycle of poverty. Free legal aid can and should be a tool to fight racism in all its forms.
Position: LAF is hiring a paralegal for its Public Benefits Practice Group. Specifically, the paralegal will assist people with disabilities who are homeless or at risk of homelessness in applying for disability benefits from the Social Security Administration. The paralegal will use the SSI/SSDI Outreach, Access, and Recovery (SOAR) methodology in the context of a Medical Legal Partnership (MLP). An MLP integrates legal services into health care settings and seeks to mitigate negative social determinants of health.
Responsibilities: The paralegal will be responsible for:
· Completing the online SOAR training and participate in periodic SOAR follow-up training;
· Assisting individuals applying for disability benefits from the Social Security Administration including
o completing SSA forms,
o obtaining and reviewing medical and vocational records,
o collaborating with medical providers to complete medical summary reports, and
o advocating with SSA field offices and Disability Determination Service;
· Assist individuals whose initial disability applications have been denied in submitting Requests for Reconsideration and supporting documentation to SSA;
· Conduct outreach to increase referrals and educate clients and social service and medical professionals about the SSA disability determination process.
Qualifications: Applicants must have a Bachelor’s Degree. Applicants should have lived or professional experience with low income populations and public benefits; Knowledge of and experience with the Social Security disability process; Knowledge of and experience with medical, social and vocational issues affecting people with serious mental illness or other disabilities; The ability to empathize with clients of different ages and from different cultural, socio-economic, racial and linguistic backgrounds; Experience reviewing medical records; Excellent written and verbal communication skills; Spanish language proficiency is preferred.
Minimum Education Required
How To Apply
To apply: Send a cover letter, resume, writing sample, and the names of two professional references by close of business on August 17, 2018 to:
Please type “Public Benefits Staff Attorney” in the email subject line.
NO PHONE CALLS PLEASE.
LAF values diversity, is an Equal Opportunity Employer, does not discriminate on the basis of disability and encourages candidates with experience working with our client population to apply.