Two Paralegals, MLCP Unit (Maria de los Santos)

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Position: Two (2) Paralegals, MLCP Unit (Maria de los Santos), Full-Time Positions

Anticipated Start date: January 27, 2023

Hiring Timeframe: Rolling

Application requirements: Cover letter, resume, writing sample and references

Background:

The Medical-Legal-Community Partnership (MLCP), a program of Philadelphia Legal Assistance (PLA), seeks to hire two (2) paralegals to become part of a unique legal care team.  PLA is a non-profit organization primarily funded by the Legal Services Corporation.  In the MLCP, legal staff operate on-site at twelve community health centers.  They collaborate with the centers’ healthcare teams to address the legal aspects of patients’ medical and social services needs that so often undermine access to effective care. By working in partnership, medical, legal and social service staff can collectively address the host of issues that can impede vulnerable populations’ access to-- and ability to benefit from-- protocols to treat and prevent illness.

MLP teams address such issues as: health insurance access and income supports; housing safety and security; utility shutoff prevention; legal status; family stability and child welfare issues; domestic violence and other health-harming legal issues. We have had success at our existing partnerships and are currently pursuing additional health centers with which to partner.

MLCP staff members work closely with healthcare providers as part of a team approach to provide holistic care and improve community health outcomes. The team works collaboratively at different sites throughout the city. We are currently seeking two paralegals to be placed at Maria de los Santos located at 401 West Allegheny Avenue, Philadelphia, PA 19133. Maria de los Santos is part of the Federally Qualified Health Center of Delaware Valley Community Health.

Responsibilities:

The successful candidate will have a variety of responsibilities, serving the needs of health center patients through direct service and capacity building efforts. Although the candidate will have dedicated time to each activity, she or he should be flexible, dynamic, and able to allow both aspects of this position to inform the other.

Paralegal duties include: interviewing and advising patients who become clients via referrals from health center staff; working with healthcare providers to understand the relationship between clients’ legal, medical, and social circumstances; evaluating a client’s situation and making appropriate referrals; negotiating with local and state agencies to help clients access critical benefits; representing clients in administrative proceedings; researching, understanding and utilizing statutes and regulations (including those that fall under the Affordable Care Act); coordinating and managing case referrals; community outreach and education on legal rights.

Capacity building duties include: building partnerships with relevant community organizations, health centers, or other organizations to strengthen the MLCP, developing a nuanced understanding of the needs of our clients and their communities, planning for expansion to additional health centers, collaborating with all members of the MLCP team, and preparing funding progress reports.

Minimum Qualifications:

We seek a college graduate with a demonstrated commitment to community service, a high sense of empathy, and an eagerness to work on a collaborative team. This person is a resourceful problem-solver with excellent written and oral communication skills.  Academic background in public health, health policy, legal studies, or social services preferred but not necessary.  Attention to detail and ability to follow specific protocols are a must. Ability to speak Spanish is required.

Salary and Benefits:

Salary is dependent upon experience, starting at $40,000.  PLA offers a generous benefit package in addition to salary:  health insurance premiums paid in full for employee and family, cash incentives for health insurance opt out, vacation, personal, and sick leave, thirteen (13) paid holidays, 403(b) retirement plan with employer contribution based on years of service, life insurance and short and long term disability benefits.    

APPLICATION PROCESS:

Philadelphia Legal Assistance (PLA) is an equal opportunity employer. PLA values a diverse work environment and strongly encourages women, people of color, people who identify as LGBTQ, people with disabilities, people who have experienced poverty or homelessness, and people who have had prior contact with the juvenile, criminal, or child welfare systems to apply. PLA invites all applicants to include in their cover letter a statement about how your unique background and/or experiences might contribute to the diversity, cultural vitality, and perspective of our staff and legal services practice. 

Send a cover letter, resume, references, and writing sample, preferably in one PDF document, to work@philalegal.org.   

Application deadline is January 27, 2023.  Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis, and the positions will remain open until filled.  We encourage applicants to submit applications early.