Bilingual Tenant Advocacy Paralegal


Employment Status: Full-time 
FLSA Status: Non-Exempt
Practice Group: Tenant Advocacy

I. Organization Information

Empire Justice Center, a diverse and highly respected, statewide legal services organization, seeks a Legal Administrative Assistant for our Rochester Office. This is an opportunity to join and grow in one of the most influential organizations serving marginalized low-income individuals and families in New York State.Empire Justice Center attracts and employs a diverse team of dedicated, determined, and passionate advocates who significantly impact the lives of low-income New Yorkers. We succeed through direct legal representation, high-impact litigation, and legislative and administrative advocacy. Additionally, the organization provides top-notch training and technical assistance to other advocates to ensure fairness and justice for New Yorkers. The organization thrives on our commitment to supporting justice for populations historically and currently experiencing high levels of oppression. These populations include racially diverse individuals and families experiencing poverty, housing insecurity, immigration issues, and domestic violence. Additionally, the organization advocates for people with disabilities, members of the LGBTQ community, and school-age children facing discrimination and violations of their civil rights in schools.

With offices in Rochester, Albany, Westchester County, and Long Island, our organization offers staff an exciting and dynamic inclusive working environment with a strong commitment to work/life balance, teamwork, diversity, wellness, and personal/professional development.

II. Position Summary

Empire Justice Center is pleased to announce the opening of a full-time Bilingual Tenant Advocacy Paralegal. The Bilingual Tenant Advocacy Paralegal will be a member of the Tenant Advocacy Practice Group, working with staff in our Hempstead Office to conduct outreach to Long Island immigrant communities and expedite client intake and case development.

III. Essential Duties and Responsibilities

  • Excellent communication skills.
  •  Provide litigation support to attorneys.
  •  Accompanying clients to the housing court
  •  Monitoring the status of high-volume cases.
  •  Flexibility and experience working as a team.
  •  Provide case support and document/data management.
  •  Conduct outreach to Long Island immigrant communities.
  •  Maintain client files, case records, and other legal documents.
  •  Ability to organize, plan, prioritize, meet deadlines, and work under pressure.
  • Provide in and out-of-court interpretation and document translation as needed.
  •  Administrative tasks associated with Tenant Advocacy Attorney’s responsibilities.
  •  Ability to respond to cultural differences among organizations, client population, and staff.
  • Fluency in Spanish and English and ability to translate documents into English and Spanish.
  • Schedule client meetings and conduct any necessary follow-up after client meetings.
  • Intake and screening of low-income immigrant tenants on Long Island who are at risk of eviction.
  • Collaborate with statewide tenant advocacy advocates and attorneys to develop strategies to strengthen and promote tenants’ rights and to formulate a broader response to the crisis of inadequate housing.
  • Other duties and responsibilities as assigned by your supervisor and/or to meet the organization’s needs.

IV. Minimum Qualifications (Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities)

  • Minimum of 3 years paralegal experience.
  • Successful completion of Spanish bilingual assessment.
  • Working knowledge of New York legal and court procedures.
  • Experience in interviewing and counseling clients, preferably in both English and Spanish.
  • Strong client communication skills including the ability to translate documents and provide translations.
  • Willingness and ability to travel to serve clients in a geographically wide-spread area on Long Island.
  • Familiarity with community resources, including housing, social services, and financial assistance programs.
  • Ability to work both independently and as a member of a team of attorneys, paralegals, and support staff.

V. Salary 

Salary is dependent on years of experience and based on the organizational pay scale. This position could be filled by a paralegal or a senior paralegal. The beginning salary for a paralegal with a minimum of 3 years of experience, is  $39,904 and the salary for a paralegal with 15 years of experience, is $57,376. The beginning salary for a senior paralegal with a minimum of 8 years of experience, is $48,744 and the salary for a senior paralegal, with 15 years of experience, is $58,936. This position will receive an additional $1,500 per year bilingual pay differential upon successful completion of a bilingual assessment.  

VII. Benefits 

We are an organization that supports and encourages a work/life balance. Empire Justice Center offers a generous benefit package including: 

  • Health insurance (employer pays 100% premium for a high quality, co-pay insurance plan). 
  • 403(b) eligibility with 1% employer match and additional employer contribution. 
  • 3% Non-Elective Annual Contribution made by Empire Justice Center. 
  • Benefit eligible after 12 months of employment. 
    • Generous vacation, sick, personal, and holiday time 14 Paid Holidays 
    • Vacation PTO: 10.5 Hours/Month; Sick PTO: 7 Hours/Month; Personal PTO: 5 Days/Year 
    • Bilingual salary enhancement for qualifying employees. 
    • Loan Repayment Assistance Program. 
    • Voluntary Supplemental Disability. 
    • Dental Insurance (employee paid). 
    • Vision Insurance (employee paid). 
    • $150K Group Term Life Insurance. 
    • Generous Bereavement Leave. 
    • 35-hour full-time work week.
    • NYS Short-Term Disability.  
    • FSA Eligibility. 

Empire Justice Center is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action employer and strongly desires a diverse and inclusive workforce. Empire Justice Center provides equal employment opportunities to all employees and applicants. It prohibits discrimination and harassment of any type, specifically – race, color, religion, age (40 or older), sex (including pregnancy and gender identity), national origin, disability status, genetics, neurodiversity, protected veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, or any other characteristic protected by federal, state, or local laws. 

TO APPLY: Please use the form on this page to complete and upload any attachments. Applications will be accepted until the position is filled. Please include

  • A resume
  • Writing sample
  • Contact information for three professional references aware of this application
  • No phone calls or hard copies, please.

If reasonable accommodations are needed, Empire Justice Center is committed to the full inclusion of all qualified individuals. As part of this commitment, Empire Justice Center ensures that persons with disabilities and/or communication barriers are provided with reasonable accommodations.