STAFF ATTORNEY Full-time Limited Term Positions available in the following Legal Action locations: Milwaukee, Madison, Oshkosh, Green Bay and Racine

You are here

Job location
United States
Organization information
Organization name: 
Legal Action of Wisconsin, Inc.
Street address: 
230 West Wells Street, Room 800
Job type: 
Legal - Civil
Position Description: 

Full-time Limited Term Positions available in the following Legal Action locations:
Milwaukee, Madison, Oshkosh, Green Bay and Racine

Legal Action of Wisconsin, Inc. (Legal Action) has applied for multiple sources of funding to expand our services and increase our capacity to meet the COVID-19 related legal needs of low-income people in Wisconsin. We expect the greatest legal needs will be eviction defense, unemployment insurance appeals, bankruptcy, workers’ rights, and unpaid wage claims. If funding is secured, positions may be available in our Milwaukee, Madison, Oshkosh, Green Bay, or Racine offices for a limited term. The Madison office attorney positions are represented for collective bargaining and new employees may voluntarily join the United Legal Workers (ULW) union, a unit of the National Organization of Legal Services Workers, UAW 2320. Applicants should state their office preference(s) in their cover letter. Much of the work may be remote, as not all offices are currently open to the public. We anticipate the term of employment for this position will end December 31, 2020.

With six offices and 128 staff members, LAW is the state's largest civil legal aid firm and the state’s largest public interest law firm. LAW is a non-profit law firm serving low-income people in 39 counties of southern Wisconsin. Legal Action also serves farmworkers statewide. Each year, the firm provides legal aid in about 10,000 – 12,000 cases. Our primary practice areas are housing, family, consumer, barriers to employment (restoring or obtaining drivers licenses and occupational licenses and improving inaccurate or misleading criminal background, arrest, or other records), and public benefits. LAW receives funding from numerous sources and donations.

Equal justice under law can only be achieved through the collaboration of a diverse staff. When we utilize our differences, we effect positive change for the communities we serve. We are committed to equitable inclusion across gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, age, ability, sex, religion, economic circumstances, ethnicity, national origin, and culture. We are striving to transcend the construct of race and be an anti-racist law firm. We encourage staff to bring their whole selves to work each day and pledge to celebrate every aspect of who they are.

Suitable training will be provided, but applicants are expected to demonstrate a sense of reasoning and resources that are necessary to perform these duties and responsibilities:

• Represent low-income clients in state and federal court, with expected needs in eviction defense, unemployment insurance appeals, bankruptcy, consumer rights, workers’ rights, and unpaid wage claims.
• Provide information, referral, advice and/or brief service to clients who do not receive representation in court.
• Utilize LAW’s case management system and all its required components.
• All Legal Action staff attorneys are responsible for providing high-quality and aggressive legal services, including representation of clients in individual service cases and to undertake impact work (that which has impact on groups of low-income persons or the systems that have the most effect on the low-income community), and for performing all duties associated with such legal services and representation as outlined in the firm’s attorney performance standards.
• Stay current with new developments in the areas of law that pertain to the low-income community.
• Share responsibility for the development and maintenance of good working relationships with community groups and with state and local bar associations and others.
• Provide training and other assistance to volunteers who participate in Legal Action's Volunteer Lawyer Project.
• Serve on at least one of our Priority Committees: Housing; Employment; Consumer; Public Benefits; and Family law. These priority committees are comprised of Legal Action attorneys practicing in those areas of law. They meet quarterly to discuss trends in the law and practicing in that area of law and to strategize the firm's work.
• Participate in all firmwide and unit-wide staff meetings and trainings.
• Other duties as assigned.

Starting salary depends upon experience and qualifications, with a minimum starting salary of $45,727; $52,347 for a candidate with five years of legal experience; $58,967 for a candidate with ten years of legal experience for a 100% full-time position. Each year, Legal Action’s Board of Directors determines the amount of salary increase for non-represented attorneys. Though not guaranteed, for many years the Legal Action Board has provided an annual $2,000 step increase.

Legal Action attorneys receive a full fringe benefit package which currently includes employer-paid health, dental, life, and long-term disability insurance; a retirement plan contribution; four weeks of vacation leave per year; four days of personal leave per year; and paid parental leave for eligible employees. The position is subject to a probationary period of up to one year. If the attorney works from LAW’s Green Bay, Milwaukee, Oshkosh, or Racine office, the position is governed by LAW’s personnel policies. All personnel policies and salaries and benefits are subject to change by Legal Action’s Board of Directors. There is no guaranteed period of employment and employment is “at will,” subject to termination at any time. If the attorney works from LAW’s Madison office, the position is governed by the terms and conditions of the collective bargaining agreement between LAW and ULW. Legal Action of Wisconsin’s personnel policies will govern where no provision is covered by the collective bargaining agreement.

This position reports to the Managing Attorney of the physical office where the attorney is located.

This position involves sedentary work, including sitting at a desk on a computer for an extended period. Exerting up to 10 pounds of force on a regular basis to lift, carry, push, or otherwise move objects. While performing the duties of this job, the employee is regularly required to stand, sit, talk, hear and use hands and fingers to operate a computer and/or laptop keyboard and use a telephone. Specific vision abilities required for this job include close vision requirements due to computer work. Drives a motor vehicle while seated for extended periods of time occasionally. Occasional reaching, bending, kneeling and stooping involved to retrieve various items and materials. If working at a LAW office, the attorney will work in an environmentally-controlled office with moderate noise from phones, printers and light office traffic.


• Prior experience in civil legal aid or other relevant experience is preferred.
• Experience and knowledge of the court systems in Legal Action’s service area is preferred.
• Legal Action requires a personal commitment to civil legal aid and to providing quality and aggressive representation to low-income people.
• Attorneys must be knowledgeable in state and federal law and procedure.
• Attorneys must meet high standards of written and oral advocacy.
• Because this is a limited term position, admission to the Wisconsin Bar is required upon hire.
• While academic training and performance and the nature and extent of prior legal experience are considered, we will also consider the applicant's knowledge and understanding of the legal problems and needs of low-income persons and commitment to providing civil legal aid, prior legal work in the client community or in other programs to aid the poor, ability to communicate with persons in the client community who speak a language other than English as their principal language (e.g., Spanish or Hmong), and cultural affinity with the client community.
• Proven ability to communicate both orally and in writing in a clear, concise, and effective manner.
• Ability to work harmoniously and cooperatively with clients, colleagues, and others.
• Experience or willingness to learn to work with empathy with vulnerable persons, individuals who are experiencing poverty, and persons experiencing trauma.
• Proven ability to handle and prioritize many pressing matters in various locations is needed.
• Ability to work with a database (electronic case management system) and Office 365 and other Microsoft products.
• Ability to travel occasionally throughout Legal Action’s service area is required.

Legal Action values a diverse staff and work environment. LAW strongly encourages applications from women, people of color, people who identify as LGBTQIA, people with disabilities, and people with life experiences or education that add to the firm’s diversity and our capacity to provide high-quality legal aid. LAW encourages applicants to include a statement about the ways that their unique background and personal, professional, and life experiences contribute to the diversity, cultural vitality, and perspective of the firm’s staff and our law firm’s mission along with their other application materials.

To apply: 

Persons interested in applying for this position should submit the following items in one PDF file to Attorney Stacia Conneely at [email protected]:
- Cover letter summarizing qualifications and interest in the position
- Resume
- Law school transcript (only required for applicants who graduated in 2015 or later)
- Writing sample
- Names and contact information for three references
- Optional, but highly encouraged: statement about the ways your unique background, and personal, professional, and life experiences contribute to the diversity, cultural vitality, and perspective of our staff and our law firm’s mission and this position.

Please indicate “Staff Attorney” in the subject line.

The Madison Office Managing Attorney is the hiring manager for these positions.

Legal Action of Wisconsin is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer
Salary range: 
Starting salary depends upon experience and qualifications, with a minimum starting salary of $45,727 for a 100% full-time position.
Submission deadline: 
Thursday, June 18, 2020