DEPENDENCY STAFF ATTORNEY
East Bay Children’s Law Offices, Inc. (EBCLO), a nonprofit organization, provides court-appointed legal representation to children and youth who are the subject of abuse and neglect proceedings in Alameda County Juvenile Dependency Court.
The mission of East Bay Children’s Law Offices, Inc., is to protect and defend the rights of children and youth through effective, vigorous and compassionate legal advocacy. EBCLO strives to provide a voice for children in the juvenile dependency system and to promote positive outcomes for them.
EBCLO seeks an experienced dependency attorney with leadership ability. This is a full time attorney position. The Staff Attorney will be responsible for a full caseload representing children at all stages of juvenile dependency proceedings pursuant to Welfare & Institutions Code § 300. The position requires extensive court appearances, trial work and regular client contact. Representation includes client interviews; providing ongoing evaluation and investigation of the cases; preparing for and participating in all hearings; participating in mediations, team decision making meetings, and other alternative dispute resolution efforts. The attorney will participate in frequent trainings to build legal knowledge, strengthen courtroom skills and develop a deeper understanding of relevant issues, as well as participate in EBCLO regular team meetings. It is also expected that the attorney will provide advocacy for juvenile dependent clients in other legal areas, including education, as appropriate.
Dependency attorneys perform a variety of specialized legal practice functions, including some combination of the following: Law and motion court appearances, including writs in the Court of Appeal; independent legal research and writing, law library and legal database management; performance of support tasks requiring special knowledge and training; client and witness interviews, performance of other legal practice tasks and all related work.
- On assignment by East Bay Children’s Law Offices, represent clients in dependency matters under Welfare & Institutions Code § 300.
- Interview clients, advise clients on legal rights, legal proceedings, and appropriate decisions regarding child placement; make preliminary evaluation of conflict.
- Take appropriate legal steps to best represent clients; advise clients on the proper course of action; represent clients at all phases of dependency proceedings, engage in client, lay witness and expert witness contact.
- Order investigation of the case and subpoena witnesses determined to be helpful to the case; analyze facts in light of relevant legal considerations; conduct legal research; prepare litigation strategy, prepare legal memoranda, motions and briefs, and argue specific legal motions and pleadings; litigate evidentiary hearings; examine and cross-examine witnesses and challenge their qualifications; argue their case.
- Conduct contested and non-contested appearances, hearings, and trials for parties in juvenile court proceedings, and seek appropriate appellate relief from decision of the Juvenile Court by preparing and arguing writs and notices of appeal.
- Visit homes and other placements for children, evaluating and reporting on the same as required; correspond and communicate with interested parties such as relatives, judges, and social services personnel with regard to placements, the status and legal rights of clients; and handle all legal steps needed to protect client’s interests.
- Participate in regular meetings with EBCLO staff and participate in general office upkeep duties, including computer data entry of case information.
- Appear before public and private groups to make presentations and answer questions on the functions of EBCLO.
- Active Member in good standing of the State Bar of California.
- Strong written and verbal skills.
- Demonstrated interest and ability in working with children and youth, and with low-income diverse ethnic communities.
- Ability to work independently and be self-motivated.
- Ability to drive with valid driver's license, auto insurance, and access to use of an automobile as needed.
- Minimum of three years experience in juvenile dependency law or equivalent litigation experience. At least five years of experience in juvenile dependency law desired.
Knowledge and Abilities:
- Philosophy and practice of indigent defense.
- Scope and character of California statutory and constitutional law, including California Welfare and Institutions Code, Code of Civil Procedure, Evidence Code, and related case law.
- Legal principles and procedures followed in the handling of dependency and juvenile cases, including rules of evidence, rules of court, trial litigation, and appellate procedure.
- Basic personal computer systems.
- Research from published and electronic legal source materials.
- Terminology common to forensics, psychology, substance abuse, child development, family law, and juvenile law.
- Legal source materials.
- Perform legal research quickly and with initiative.
- Work effectively with colleagues and representatives of other agencies.
- Follow written and oral instructions.
- Prepare written legal arguments in a logical and concise manner.
- Legal research, including the interpretation of codes, statutes, procedures and forms.
- Summarize and evaluate complex documents and factual situations.
- Understand and apply legal principles to factual situations.
- Communicate effectively with clients, lay witnesses, expert witnesses, child welfare workers, and other lawyers and Judges.
- Analyze situations accurately and adopt an effective course of action.
- Elicit, analyze, and apply legal data and evidence.
- Perform in a stressful environment.
- Appropriate decision making.
- Interpersonal sensitivity and flexibility.
- Establish working relationships with clients of diverse racial, cultural, socio-economic and age backgrounds and inspire their confidence.
- Utilize advanced litigation techniques, preserving the trial record by making timely and appropriate objections and motions, with demonstrated facility in writ procedures.
- Present legal arguments clearly, logically, and effectively in oral and written form.
- Handle legal correspondence and procedures with tact and accuracy.
- Maintain records, logs, and case files and prepare reports.
Commensurate with experience
December 19, 2014, at 5:00 p.m. (Inquiries will be accepted until position is filled).
Send cover letter, resume, and a list of three references to:
East Bay Children’s Law Offices
7700 Edgewater Drive, Suite 210
Oakland, CA 94621
Or email to
email@example.com (Please specify “Attorney” in subject line)
The East Bay Children’s Law Offices is an equal opportunity employer, a drug-free workplace, and an ADA accessible facility. The East Bay Children’s Law Offices values and promotes diversity. Applications invited regardless of race, gender, national origin, sexual orientation, age or disability.