The Neighborhood Defender Service is a community-based, client-centered, holistic public defense office serving the residents of Northern Manhattan. NDS clients are represented by multidisciplinary teams providing criminal, civil, immigration and family representation. NDS is accepting applications for the position of Legal Advocate in the Immigration Defense Practice.

The Immigration Defense Practice works as part of NDS’s Civil Defense Practice to minimize the immigration consequences of contact with the criminal justice and child welfare systems and assist Northern Manhattan residents in accessing immigration relief. The practice provides removal defense, as well as assistance in submitting affirmative applications. The Legal Advocate will support the work of the practice through conducting community intake, screening clients for relief eligibility, filing and supporting clients with affirmative applications, assisting attorneys with clients in removal proceedings, and other duties as necessary to provide holistic immigration services to NDS’s clients.


  • Embrace NDS’ philosophy of client-centered, community-based, holistic representation and commitment to excellence
  • Conduct intake with clients seeking immigration assistance;
  • Screen clients for eligibility for immigration benefits and relief;
  • Work with clients to obtain immigration benefits such as adjustment of status, asylum, naturalization, work authorization, green card renewals, and more;
  • Represent clients in interviews before USCIS; and
  • Support the practice’s removal defense docket.

Desired Qualifications:

  • Bachelor’s degree or equivalent. Full or partial BIA accreditation required.
  • Demonstrated commitment to social justice.
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills.
  • Excellent organizational skills, including the ability to manage a diverse caseload.
  • Must be able to travel throughout New York City.
  • Must be able to work cooperatively with attorneys and other NDS advocates and problem solve
  • Fluency in Spanish is required.


Compensation is commensurate with experience and is in adherence to the NDS compensation scale. Full medical and dental benefits, as well as other benefits, are provided.

How to Apply:

Interested applicants should email a cover letter and resume as one PDF with the subject line, “Legal Advocate, Civil Defense Practice” to: We are looking to fill this position immediately.

Neighborhood Defender Service, Inc. is an Equal Opportunity Employer.