Staff Attorney - Terra Frima

Job Description

Job Title: Staff Attorney 

FLSA Status: Full Time, Exempt

Classification: Professional

Department: Immigrant and Refugee Services 

Reports to: Supervising Attorney - Terra Firma 

Supervisory Responsibilities: No

Summary: Terra Firma is the first medical-legal partnership in the United States specifically for unaccompanied immigrant children. Terra Firma provides holistic and integrated legal services, medical care, mental health, and social and educational programming specifically designed for unaccompanied immigrant children released from federal immigration detention. Terra Firma is a programmatic partnership between Catholic Charities Community Services, The Children’s Hospital at Montefiore, and the Children’s Health Fund. The staff attorney position includes extensive contact with youth, including youth who have suffered abuse, abandonment, neglect, and other complex trauma. Core services of Terra Firma include: legal intake interviews; representation before the United States Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS), the Executive Office for Immigration Review (EOIR), and state courts. The provision of these legal services occurs in the context of the Terra Firma medical-legal partnership, including regular coordination and on-site collaboration with medical and mental health partners. 

Essential Duties and Responsibilities include the following. Other duties may be assigned. 


  • Provide direct representation to unaccompanied minors, including representation before the USCIS and EOIR in cases involving Special Immigrant Juvenile Status (SIJS), asylum, Voluntary Departure, U visas, and other relief, and representation in New York State courts to obtain orders necessary for SIJS.

  • Maintain strong working relationships with Terra Firma partners and other stakeholders, including funders; state and local social service providers; and USCIS, EOIR, and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS).

  • Comply with program reporting requirements, such as maintaining monthly statistics and case reports, and reporting to partners and stakeholders.

  • Maintain and update electronic files in LawLogix, as well as physical case files.

  • Train, mentor and supervise legal interns, fellows and volunteers for work on individual cases, presentations, legal screenings, and related work.

  • Provide in-house and outreach trainings, presentations, and workshops, as directed.

Position Type and Expected Hours of Work: 

The position requires willingness to travel to all five (5) boroughs. Days and hours of work are generally 9:00 AM to 5 PM Monday - Friday. Additional evening/weekend hours may be required to meet court and/or program deadlines or client needs. 

Working conditions and physical demands required:

The demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job.

  • Travel at least 25% of the time using public transportation or vehicle, traverse city streets, occasionally ascend/descend stairs, and be exposed to outside weather conditions.
  • Remain stationary at a work station, in court/meetings, and use a computer at least 75% of the time.
  • Remain stationary and/or ambulate to instruct and monitor during trainings and presentations.
  • Carry a laptop to offsite work locations.​

Education and/or experience required:

  • Juris Doctor.
  • At least one year of post-JD experience in immigration law, representing clients in affirmative benefits applications to USCIS or in removal defense, ideally with prior experience representing children.
  • Admission to New York bar strongly preferred. Will consider applicants actively working towards admission in New York.​

Skills, Licenses, and/or competencies required:

  • Bilingual: Fluency in English and Spanish.
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills.
  • Excellent interpersonal skills, maturity, and an ability to work both independently and in a highly collaborative team environment.
  • Excellent organizational, project management and computer skills.
  • Demonstrated commitment to public interest law, particularly to children’s issues and/or immigration.
  • Experience supervising paralegals or other staff.​



Job Summary

Staff Attorney - Terra Frima
Immigrant and Refugee Services Division
Juris Doctor

How to Apply

Applicants must submit a resume and cover letter highlighting relevant past experience and qualifications, and state their position of interest and desired compensation. Submissions without this information will not be considered.

Please send resume and cover letter to: