Charleston Legal Access is seeking rising 3Ls, current judicial law clerks, or otherwise eligible fellowship applicants to work on wage theft issues in Charleston, SC.
CLA will work with fellows to obtain funding through Skadden, Equal Justice Works, Open Society Foundations, and other organizations and schools.
To Apply: If you would like to be considered for sponsorship, please send an application, including a resume, writing sample, and a cover letter that includes a brief description of your interest in this project. Applications may be emailed to email@example.com with “2019 Legal Fellowship” as the subject line.
The Organization: CLA is a non-profit 501(c)(3) law firm dedicated to expanding access to legal representation in South Carolina. We serve moderate and low income individuals, providing legal services on a sliding scale. We also engage in projects to expand access to justice in South Carolina.
The Position: The two-year fellow (2019-2021) will conduct litigation, research, and/or advocacy to lead a wage theft project at CLA. Wage theft is the denial of wages or employee benefits that are rightfully owed to an employee. Wage theft can be committed through various means such as: failure to pay overtime, failure to pay minimum wage, employee misclassification, illegal deductions in pay, working off the clock, not being paid a final check, or not being paid at all. Federal and state law provide remedies for victims of wage theft. Many victims of wage theft are low-income or undocumented; they may not know their legal rights and/or do not know how to enforce them. Furthermore, because the amount of money at issue may be (relatively) small, many private attorneys may turn down meritorious cases due to the small amount of money at issue. The fellow will plan and engage in grassroots outreach efforts to connect clients with our services, develop know-your-rights materials and conduct community education on wage theft and workers’ rights, and represent victims of wage theft in litigation.
The ideal candidate should have a demonstrated commitment to public interest law and access to justice. CLA is a young, innovative non-profit that seeks to bridge the justice gap in South Carolina, and there is room for growth within the organization for the right fellow.
Team Values: These values, developed by our collective staff, embody what we will expect from you and what you can expect from us.
Bring your voice.
Each team member has a unique perspective, and that perspective is valuable. You may see things the rest of us miss. So, speak up! We believe the best solutions are developed by diverse teams with a safe space to collaborate frankly and honestly. To do our best work, we need everyone to bring their voice.
Your cases and projects are yours. Own them. Educate yourself. Research it. Ask for advice. You may get a scenario that you haven’t seen before. That’s okay. You are capable and competent. You’ve got this. Dive in and figure it out.
Do it your way but do it well.
You can work where, when and how you want. Prefer to take your laptop to a coffee shop? Go for it. Do your best work at 2 a.m.? Awesome. Have a parkour class/home responsibilities/something else in the middle of the day? No problem. You work however you work best but you must deliver. You are responsible for ensuring that you and the team deliver top-notch, responsive legal services to our clients.
Don’t just say no.
We are a young, innovative organization working creatively to close the justice gap. To be successful in our mission, we’re going to have to try new things. So take a risk. Try something new. Entertain suggestions. Before saying no, take a breath and consider what “yes” might look like.
Take care of each other.
We value the individuals of our team and help each other in this work-life-community balance. If someone needs to step back for a little while, step up. If someone has a scheduling nightmare, cover a hearing/consultation/meeting. Pitch in where you can. Know that when life throws you a curve ball, you have a team behind you.
Stay on top of your sh*t.
When our attorneys show up at hearing/mediation/trial, they know their case, they’ve done their research, and they have prepared for contingencies. Because we tackle things early, we spot issues in time to resolve them and can ask for help before it’s an emergency. At some point, we all have a case/project/matter that we would really rather avoid, but that’s a recipe for disaster and not the way we roll. Eat the frog. Be prepared.
For our clients. Our clients have a variety of backgrounds, education and worldly know-how. Check your frustration and embrace your patience as you engage with clients from backgrounds different from your own. Have compassion for their story and meet them where they are.
For our team and yourself. We are an innovative organization taking risks and not everything we try will pan out. That’s ok. We learn, adjust and keep tackling the justice gap. Sometimes, we get it wrong or misstep. When that happens, have a little compassion for your teammate and for yourself.
Charleston Legal Access is an equal opportunity employer that recognizes the benefits of a diverse team. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, familial or veteran status, and we strongly encourage applications from persons of diverse backgrounds.
1630 Meeting Street Road, Suite 106
Charleston, SC, 29405