Elder Law Fellow

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Job location
101 Yesler Way
Suite 300
Seattle, WA 98104
United States
Organization information
Organization name: 
Columbia Legal Services
Street address: 
101 Yesler Way, Suite 300
Seattle, WA
Job type: 
Legal - Civil
Position Description: 

For many years, Columbia Legal Services has represented some of the most marginalized people in our community. We use every legal tool available on their behalf. Our role to serve people and use advocacy that might otherwise not be available makes our work an integral part of the Washington Alliance for Equal Justice. As a proud member of the Alliance, our vision of justice is when people have the necessary tools and opportunity to achieve social and economic justice, a more equitable and inclusive society is possible. Through large-scale litigation, policy reform, and innovative partnerships, our lawyers and staff work in furtherance of our mission. The ideal candidate for any position at Columbia Legal Services will be able to articulate their role in the achievement of that vision.

Columbia Legal Services seeks a one-year Elder Law Fellow to support its practice on behalf of low-income clients and to advance systemic reform. Areas of practice on behalf of seniors will include public benefits, guardianship, housing, and access to medical or mental health services. A willingness and ability to learn these areas is critical to success.

• Advocate for low-income seniors through community education, policy work, direct client representation (including potential class action work), and legal consultation for caseworkers and others. Work with a legal team on trial and appellate litigation and legislative advocacy.
• Foster relationships with other legal services organizations, service providers, and the private bar to identify opportunities and execute strategies to advance the law for low-income populations. Creatively investigate and identify practices and laws that adversely affect the rights and diminish the benefits of low-income seniors, and devise strategies to address these problems.
• Participate in the Elder Abuse Council, and provide research and writing support for the Elder Law Task Force on Public Guardianship.
• Assist with the development of campaigns and strategies to advance the goals of the project team.


• This one-year fellowship is designed for new attorneys with 0-2 years of experience.
• Law degree and licensed to practice in Washington (new attorneys welcome to apply).
• Proven ability to quickly develop expertise in various areas of law, as demonstrated by past employment and/or law school history.
• Ability to analyze complex problems and develop creative, practical systemic solutions.
• Excellent communication, research, and analytical skills.
• Enthusiasm for learning new areas of law, and for sharing that knowledge internally and externally, including presentations and trainings.
• Ability to work well independently and on a team, prioritize responsibilities, and meet deadlines on time-sensitive projects.
• Cultural competence; experience working with low-income client communities, or immigrant populations a plus.
This job description is not designed to cover or contain a comprehensive listing of activities, duties or responsibilities that are required of the fellow.

This job description is not designed to cover or contain a comprehensive listing of activities, duties or responsibilities that are required of the fellow.

CLS offers a competitive and comprehensive compensation package including generous holiday and paid time off, and excellent health care benefits. Salary scaled to experience, beginning around $50,000.

To apply: 

First round of applications will be considered by November 21, 2016. Due to the volume of applications received, CLS is unable to respond to every application. CLS will contact you if we decide to pursue your application. If e-mailed, please make Elder Law Fellow your subject line. Please send your letter of interest, resume, and a 3-10 page writing sample to:

Trisa Kern, Director of Program Administration
Columbia Legal Services
101 Yesler Way Suite 300
Seattle, Washington, 98104
[email protected]

Program Policy

Columbia Legal Services is committed to a policy of pluralism and equal opportunity in an environment free of barriers and discriminatory practices for its client communities, Board and staff. Pluralism refers to the active promotion of mutual respect, acceptance, teamwork and productivity among people who are diverse in work background, experience, education, race, color, national origin, sex, age, religious preference, marital status, sexual orientation, sensory, mental and physical abilities, veteran status, or any other perceived differences. The resulting diversity is both a source of program strength and a matter of fundamental human fairness. If you need a reasonable accommodation for the application process, contact Sharon Nyland at 206-464-1122 or [email protected].

Equal Opportunity Employer
Salary range: 
Salary scaled to experience, beginning around $50,000.
Submission deadline: 
Monday, November 7, 2016