This position can be filled in Washington, DC or Baltimore offices.

The Capital Area Immigrants’ Rights (CAIR) Coalition is the only non-profit organization in the Washington, D.C. area with legal services programs focused exclusively on assisting immigrants detained by Immigration and Customs Enforcement in Virginia and Maryland, and unaccompanied immigrant children held in the custody of the Office of Refugee Resettlement in Virginia. We are seeking a attorney to join our Detained Adult Program and assist our team provide quality legal services to adults detained in the DMV. We seek a committed advocate who will enhance our team’s ability to provide empathetic legal services to detained immigrants hailing from a wide variety of countries and who speak many different languages. Responsibilities will include providing know your rights and intake services to adults detained in custody as well as providing direct representation.


Description of Position

Direct Representation

CAIR Coalition is hiring an Attorney to represent and safeguard the rights of detained immigrants found mentally incompetent by an Immigration Judge.  Through the National Qualified Representative Program (NQRP), CAIR Coalition has been appointed counsel for detained immigrants determined to be legally incompetent in immigration court.  Incompetency is a legal standard that an Immigration Judge determines after reviewing indicia that an immigrant has mental health disability that affects her ability to represent herself without counsel in court.   

Once appointed, the attorney would represent clients on a range of defenses from asylum, cancellation of removal, voluntary departure, and even deportation. An attorney in this position provides direct representation to detained adult men and women with mental health conditions and/or intellectual disabilities in immigration removal proceedings. 

Duties Include

  • Representation in removal proceedings before the Arlington or Baltimore Immigration Courts on requests for custody redetermination (bond) and/or individual merits hearings;
  • Representation may also include appellate proceedings before the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA) and case-related work involving the services described above before United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS);
  • Representation may also include pursuing post-conviction relief directly related to the above services;
  • Advocacy and assistance with other holistic services reasonably necessary to prepare a “post-release plan” for release from Department of Homeland Security (DHS) custody (ex., efforts to connect the respondent to community-based mental health care, housing, or other community resources once out of DHS custody);
  • Comply with data and program reporting requirements to keep track of case progress;


  1. Juris Doctorate degree required;
  2. A valid driver’s license;
  3. Proficiency in Spanish is preferred, but applications for non-Spanish speakers will be considered;
  4. Experience working with detained immigrants or other incarcerated populations;
  5. Experience and/or interest working with individuals with mental disabilities preferred, our organization will also provide training on working with this population;
  6. Strong litigation experience and/or oral advocacy skills;
  7. Strong legal research and writing skills;
  8. Demonstrated ability and/or willingness to zealously pursue new and untested legal theories; and
  9. Demonstrated ability to take initiative and work under pressure.

Salary & Benefits

Salary commensurate with experience. A generous benefits package that includes medical, dental and vision insurance, four weeks vacation plus all federal holidays. We are an LRAP eligible employer.

How to Apply

Please send resume and cover letter to with the subject "NQRP Attorney". Applications will be considered on a rolling basis, early submissions are encouraged as the position is open immediately. No phone calls please.

Job Type