Civil Survival organizes system-impacted people, provides legal representation, and advocates for policy reform to restore opportunity to communities harmed by the criminal legal system. We envision a world without incarceration, where people are not limited by their past and are valued for their humanity. Civil Survival’s work includes:
• Organizing mass assistance days that provide legal financial obligation relief to hundreds of clients in a single day. During Civil Survival’s mass assistance day in Pierce County, the courts waived over $2.3 million in criminal legal debt.
• Leading systemic advocacy to make reentry legal relief accessible and automatic. Civil Survival recently led a coalition of organizations to improve Washington’s mandatory legal financial obligations motion, allowing the motion to provide relief to thousands of additional Washingtonians. Civil Survival also led the effort to pass HB 1412, which allowed for restitution to be waived in tens of thousands of cases across Washington.
• Hosting weekly GameChanger groups that provide justice-involved individuals a place to learn how to advocate for systemic change, overcome their own reentry barriers, and provide peer support.
• Providing free criminal history reports for anyone with a criminal record in the state of Washington.
• Supporting bills that expand legal rights for justice-involved individuals. Civil Survival was closely involved in securing the passage of the New Hope Act, which made significant improvements to Washington’s criminal record vacation process.
The Legal Assistant will work under the direction of the attorney assigned to the case but will generally be supervised by the Senior Attorney. The legal assistant will work on a team of seven, which includes four staff attorneys, one senior attorney, and one paralegal. Responsibilities include, but are not limited to:
• Assisting with the client management system, including tracking service requests, client intakes, case management, and conflict check searches;
• Supporting the legal team in staying organized, including tracking tasks in project management systems and organizing electronic casefiles;
• Filing pleadings in municipal, district, and superior courts while ensuring proper service to all parties;
• Researching court filing rules and processes;
• Communicating with clients and other parties, as necessary, whether in-person, through email, or via phone/zoom, to assess legal needs, or otherwise gather information to assist in representation;
• Obtaining court records information through online court portals, including the Judicial Information System and Judicial Access Browser System;
• Coordinating with clients to collect other case documents that will be utilized in representation;
• Filing public disclosure requests for documents related to legal representation;
• Generating and sharing criminal history summaries with individuals interested in reentry legal relief;
• Working collaboratively with colleagues; and
• Assisting with special projects and other clerical duties related to litigation and policy advocacy work within the organization.
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