Employment

Join Us and Make a Difference Every Day

Pine Tree Legal Assistance employs a diverse team of individuals, each committed to making our communities more just.

Pine Tree Legal Assistance is an equal opportunity employer and encourages applications from qualified candidates of all backgrounds.

Not convinced yet? This is what Legal Services Corporation President Jim Sandman has to say about PTLA:

“Since Pine Tree Legal Assistance opened its doors in 1967, it has developed a national reputation for leadership and innovation in the delivery of legal services to low-income people.  Pine Tree was the first legal aid program in the country to create a website to provide basic  legal information to people without a lawyer.  Pine Tree created statesidelegal.org, the go-to national website for veterans and  military families seeking information about their legal needs. In Maine, Pine Tree has had a huge impact: the abolition of debtors’ prison, the right to due process and a fair hearing in state welfare proceedings, the first successful employment discrimination lawsuits, improved housing codes and accessibility for people with disabilities, and nationally acclaimed foreclosure prevention work are all legacies of Pine Tree’s commitment to fairness and justice for all.  Pine Tree is a national standard-setter for excellence in legal aid.”

Pay and Benefits at PTLA

The salary range for PTLA attorneys and senior leadership in 2020 is $52,750 -$89,750, depending on experience.  The starting range for paralegals and administrative staff in 2020 is $38,750 - $60,750, depending on experience. All staff are eligible for a very generous benefit and leave package.  Pine Tree staff attorneys are eligible to participate in a LRAP program administered by the Maine Justice Foundation in addition to other loan forgiveness programs for which they may be eligible, including the Public Service Loan Forgiveness program.

Current Opportunities:

  • Bangor Paralegal Specialist
  • IT Support Specialist
  • Pro Bono Staff Attorney
  • Native American Unit Attorney

 

Bangor Paralegal Specialist

The Bangor office of Pine Tree Legal Assistance has an immediate opening for a full-time paralegal position.   The paralegal  covers a weekly shift on the PTLA Call Center handling requests for legal services in a wide variety of areas and provides some administrative support to staff in the Bangor office.  However, the position is primarily focused on support for two specialized units housed in the Bangor office:
 

The Low Income Taxpayer Clinic (LITC) provides free legal assistance statewide to low-income taxpayers with IRS disputes and handled 130+ cases/year for individuals facing serious financial consequences for tax problems. Many program clients have limited English proficiency and relied on others for tax preparation that was not done correctly. The LITC works with volunteer tax preparers and attorneys to help resolve these issues.


The Farmworker Unit (FWU) provides or supports free legal assistance to agricultural workers throughout New England. Estimates suggest that more than 60,000 agricultural workers and their dependents work in New England on a seasonal or year-round basis. Many come to New England on a seasonal basis from Mexico or other Central American countries, Puerto Rico or Jamaica.  Outside Maine, most workers are Hispanic or Jamaican; Maine has a significant Haitian Creole worker population. Many workers lack basic rights, face exploitation and live in fear of reporting abuses. Their legal needs range from enforcement of state and federal agricultural worker protections and related employment laws to protection from sexual harassment.   The paralegal will assist local staff attorneys and partners in other States with a range of different tasks.  While the current pandemic is limiting travel, it is ordinarily required in connection with outreach efforts to agricultural workers throughout the service area.


The starting salary for this position is $38,750+ depending on experience, with generous leave and insurance benefits, and the opportunity for ongoing professional development. A full job description is available upon request.
 

A bachelor’s degree and ability to track and document program services in Pine Tree’s computerized case management system are required. Previous experience as an advocate for low-income people and/or tax experience is helpful; language proficiency in Spanish or Haitian-Creole is preferred.   Applicants should demonstrate a commitment to the program’s mission and core values, the capacity to work collegially and effectively with local program staff and colleagues, and the desire to contribute to and maintain Pine Tree’s high standards for excellence.


Pine Tree Legal Assistance values an inclusive and diverse work environment and strongly encourages women, people of color, people who identify as LGBTQ, people with disabilities, and people who have experienced poverty or homelessness to apply. Pine Tree Legal Assistance is an equal opportunity employer and encourages applications from qualified candidates of all backgrounds. Pine Tree promotes an inclusive workplace both in its policies and practices.

Applicants should provide a letter of interest, current resume,  and contact information for three references via email to Bangor Managing Attorney Erica Veazey (eveazey@ptla.org), Intake Manager Maureen Boston (mboston@ptla.org) and Deputy Director Chet Randall (crandall@ptla.org.) Applications are encouraged by July 15,  but will be accepted until the position is filled.


IT Support Specialist

Pine Tree Legal Assistance has an immediate opening for a full-time IT Support Specialist in Maine. The ideal candidate will have 3+ years’ experience in this role, including administrative support with the LegalServer case management system.  They will also be excited and inspired by the opportunity to help staff and volunteers leverage technology to advance the goal of justice for all Maine residents.   The starting salary for this position is $38,750+ depending on experience, with generous leave and insurance benefits, and the opportunity for ongoing professional development.

Pine Tree Legal Assistance is Maine’s oldest and largest civil legal aid provider, with a current staff of 60 and offices in six locations around Maine. Since 2000, it has operated an Information Technology network for its own  staff and colleagues in several other nonprofit organizations.  Current technologies include Microsoft Active Directory, Microsoft Exchange Online/SQL/SharePoint Online, VMware, Cisco VoIP Telephony, Citrix, videoconferencing, and a shared computerized case management system (LegalServer.) With the upcoming retirement of the last original IT team member, Pine Tree seeks a full-time IT Support Specialist to work with its experienced Director of Information Technology in providing support and services to Pine Tree staff and volunteers, as well as Provider Network participants (currently, three legal aid providers, a law school clinic and a small nonprofit foundation.) The IT Support Specialist functions as the LegalServer local administrator and expert, handles daily requests for software-related technical support and troubleshooting, provides initial technology training and overview for new staff and volunteers, and is involved in database management, adaptations and reporting. The IT Support Specialist will also work on a daily basis with the IT Director on system needs and changes and collaborate on training needs and ways to strengthen user experience and improvements in the Provider Network.  To strengthen teamwork and a shared approach to the work, the Support Specialist will ideally work in the same PTLA office (Lewiston) with the IT Director, although PTLA will also consider work from its Portland office location.   While much of this support is provided remotely, in-person trainings and support will require some travel around the State.   A full job description is available upon request.

Essential Skills for the position include the following:

  • Bachelor’s degree with a focus on computer science or related field, or comparable work experience.
  • 3+ years of experience providing timely  and effective IT help-desk support to a wide range of users, including those with limited  technical skills or understanding.
  • Excellent critical thinking, communication and time management skills.
  • Extensive knowledge of database management and report-writing (including Microsoft SQL, Crystal Report, MS Access, and other applications).  Previous experience with LegalServer is highly desirable.
  • Extensive knowledge of Microsoft desktop operating systems (Windows 10) and desktop applications including Microsoft 365, such as Word, Excel, Outlook, QuickBooks and other common software programs.
  • Working knowledge of Microsoft Server operating systems.
  • Sufficient understanding of hardware and network equipment and connectivity issues to identify when they impact user experience and the ability to promptly engage the IT Director and/or vendor contacts as needed to address those concerns.
  • A positive approach and commitment to continuous learning about technologies that can improve individual and program wide job performance and client service.
  • A shared commitment to and enthusiasm for working  with colleagues and peers in a fast-paced nonprofit environment in support of improved access to justice for Maine residents.  

Pine Tree Legal Assistance values an inclusive and diverse work environment and strongly encourages women, people of color, people who identify as LGBTQ, people with disabilities, and people who have experienced poverty or homelessness to apply. Pine Tree Legal Assistance is an equal opportunity employer and encourages applications from qualified candidates of all backgrounds. Pine Tree promotes an inclusive workplace both in its policies and practices.

Applicants should provide a letter of interest, current resume,  and contact information for three references via email to IT Director Leonard Kimble (lkimble@ptla.org) and Executive Director Nan Heald (nheald@ptla.org). Applications are encouraged by July 15,  but will be accepted until the position is filled.


Pro Bono Staff Attorney

Working collaboratively with Maine’s other legal aid programs, Pine Tree is committed to a robust pro bono program designed to expand access to justice for low-income Maine residents.  To achieve this goal, it offers a menu of pro bono opportunities designed to appeal to Maine attorneys and law students and which are aligned with its core legal services and key client populations.  Pine Tree has an immediate opening for a licensed Maine attorney to join its three-person statewide Pro Bono Unit, based in its Portland field office. The position has been funded through September 2021 by the Legal Services Corporation and renewal funding for the position will be sought.  

The pro bono staff attorney is primarily responsible for the oversight of private attorneys that agree to take on full representation and advice only cases on behalf of Pine Tree. The attorney will work closely with other members of the Pro Bono Unit to develop projects that integrate private attorney involvement into PTLA’s priority areas of practice by coordinating and delivering training to volunteers, and supervising their work in court and at legal clinics. Additionally, the attorney will be expected to carry a caseload of their own, especially as relates to ongoing clinic coverage for which volunteers are unavailable. Pine Tree is closed approximately 150 pro bono cases in 2019 and anticipates that number will grow to over 300+ full representation cases in 2020 and additional advice only cases.

This position requires experience and skill in litigation, training and volunteer supervision and an ability to quickly develop comprehensive knowledge of various substantive areas of law and provide training and support to volunteers in those areas. While the position is based in Portland, where there is the highest volume of private attorneys, the attorney should expect to be in several courts in southern Maine and other clinic locations throughout the state on a regular basis to supervise a high volume of pro bono cases. The pro bono staff attorney must also work effectively with colleagues throughout Pine Tree as well as external partners and volunteers, and be responsive to grant and caseload expectations for the office.  In addition, the pro bono staff attorney shares responsibility with colleagues and Central staff for community outreach, development of client education materials and other program resources, and support of external activities that contribute to Pine Tree’s local reputation for excellent legal work and success in developing new funding partnerships.
 
Specific decisions about how to prioritize between these time commitments are made in consultation with other colleagues and the attorney supervisor. All work must be carefully managed and documented to meet funder expectations and must be delivered in a timely manner. The attorney is expected to be a valued contributor and supportive colleague to other members of the office and to the program as a whole, consistent with Pine Tree’s core values.   The complete job description for this position is available upon request.  Applicants must be eligible to practice law in Maine, with previous litigation experience.


To apply:
Applicants should provide a letter of interest, resume and contact information for three references  via email to Pro Bono Director Shannon Karam (skaram@ptla.org), Deputy Director Chet Randall (crandall@ptla.org), and Executive Director Nan Heald (nheald@ptla.org). Applications are encouraged by June 26, 2020,  but will be accepted until the position is filled. We encourage women, people of color, people who identify as LGBTQ+, people with disabilities, or people who have experienced poverty or homelessness to apply.  Pine Tree Legal Assistance is an equal opportunity employer and encourages applications from qualified candidates of all backgrounds.


Native American Unit Attorney

Pine Tree Legal Assistance seeks a full-time staff attorney to staff its statewide Native American Unit and provide services to tribal communities in CT. The position can be based in either PTLA’s Bangor or Machias office locations, with a preference for the Machias office. This is primarily a litigation position: the attorney should expect to be in court or appearing in administrative proceedings on a regular basis on issues specific to the client’s status as Native American and/or which raise Indian law issues, including tribal/state jurisdiction, tribal benefits, tribal housing, race discrimination, the Indian Child Welfare Act, the Indian Civil Rights Act, and/or border crossing issues. They may also involve general poverty law issues. Where funding allows, the attorney will also handle juvenile or criminal court appointments and/or civil cases in tribal court. The attorney is also responsible for community engagement and networking to strengthen Pine Tree’s reputation and access to legal services by eligible Native Americans, including regular outreach and work on newsletters and website resources for Native Americans in Maine and Connecticut. Pine Tree is also willing to consider exceptional third-year law students with a demonstrated commitment to this work, but a preference will be given to attorneys who are licensed in a state and eligible to work in Maine under M.R.Civ.P. 89(c), as well as preferring individuals with experience living or working within Native American communities. A copy of the full job description is available upon request.

To Apply:

Applicants should provide a letter of interest, resume and contact information for three references via email to Native American Unit Supervisor Lisa Chase (lchase@ptla.org), Deputy Director Chet Randall (crandall@ptla.org) and Executive Director Nan Heald (nheald@ptla.org). Applications are encouraged by June 26th, but will be accepted until the position is filled. We encourage women, people of color, people who identify as LGBTQ+, people with disabilities, or people who have experienced poverty or homelessness to apply. Pine Tree Legal Assistance is an equal opportunity employer and encourages applications from qualified candidates of all backgrounds.