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Staff Attorney for Family Defense Practice

Job Description

Brooklyn Defender Services Family Defense Practice (BFDP) seeks a staff attorney to begin immediately. BFDP represents low-income parents in child welfare and related family court cases in Brooklyn Family Court. Through holistic representation in an interdisciplinary setting, BFDP helps f amilies obtain the benefits and services they need to keep their families safe and stable. BFDP also advocates for parents' due process rights by fighting unwarranted state intervention in their lives. The office also advocates for systemic change in the family court and child welfare systems.

BFDP has a high volume and litigation-focused practice. Attorneys spend most of their days in court and frequently conduct hearings and trials, often on an emergency basis. Staff attorneys are expected to provide high-quality and vigorous representation at all court appearances and throughout the course of a case. Staff attorneys work closely with staff social workers and parent advocates to provide inter-disciplinary representation that includes assistance on related legal matters, such as housing, immigration, public benefits and domestic violence.

Candidates are expected to be admitted to the NYS Bar or awaiting admission and have excellent litigation and written and oral communication skills. Bi-lingual attorneys are encouraged to apply; in particular BFDP seeks Spanish speaking attorneys.

How to Apply

Please send a resume and cover letter to including Staff Attorney on the Subject Line.

Social Worker for Family Defense Practice

Brooklyn Defender Services is an interdisciplinary law office that represents almost 40,000 indigent clients arrested each year with specialized legal services for young clients and those with immigration issues.  The Family Defense Practice (BFDP) represents parents in child welfare cases in Brooklyn Family Court. BFDP advocates for clients who have diverse, complex and multi-faceted needs in a high volume and very face-paced setting.  BFDP seeks a social worker to become part of the out of court advocate team of social workers and parent advocates.

Social workers team up with attorneys and parent advocates to provide comprehensive legal representation to our clients.  They advocate for clients at agency case conferences, conduct client assessments, do crisis intervention management, develop service plans for clients, work closely with attorneys to determine case strategy, refer clients for services, communicate with service providers about clients’ needs, and conduct home visits.

Qualifications: Applicants must have a Master’s Degree in Social Work and be licensed or willing and eligible to become licensed.   Applicants should possess excellent interpersonal, analytical, writing, and organizational skills and be willing to work as part of a team in a very fast-paced environment.  Strong preference will be given to applicants who have experience in mental health issues, family court and/or the child welfare system.  Bi-lingual social workers are strongly encouraged to apply; in particular BFDP seeks Spanish speaking applicants. BFDP seeks applicants with 2-5 years’ experience.

How to Apply

Salary and benefits are determined based on years and level of experience.  Please send a resume and cover letter to Gittel Kagan at Please include social work position in the subject line.

Candidates selected for interviews will be contacted.

Brooklyn Defender Services is an equal opportunity employer and considers all applications without regard to race, color, religion, creed, gender, gender identity, gender expression, national origin, age, disability, socio-economic status, marital or veteran status, or sexual orientation.



Education Requirements


Level of Language Proficiency

Bi-lingual attorneys are encouraged to apply; in particular BFDP seeks Spanish speaking attorneys.

Employment Type

Full Time

Salary Details

Salary commensurate with experience