Public Interest Law Initiative

Participating Agencies

Below is the complete list of the 30 public interest law agencies in Illinois that have been approved to participate in PILI’s Law Student Internship Program. Please do not contact the agency directly to apply for a PILI Internship as all applications must be made through PILI’s online application system. Most positions are located in the Chicago area, and we also currently fund Internships in Alton, Bloomington, Champaign, East St. Louis, Peoria, and Rock Island, Illinois.

Access Living of Metropolitan Chicago

Interested in disability rights and working with attorneys who specialize in disability rights? Want to learn about the disability rights movement? Access Living is a disability rights organization that uses advocacy and litigation to promote the full integration of people with disabilities into the fabric of society. The Civil Rights Team focuses on discrimination – instances in which people with disabilities confront barriers to housing, government services and programs, and public accommodations (i.e. businesses open to the public). Interns and Fellows get to do real legal work. Under the supervision of attorneys, they interview clients, investigate cases, analyze documents, write demand letters, draft complaints and other legal pleadings, conduct legal research, and manage their own caseload. Interns and Fellows are integrated into the day-to-day operations of the Team. They attend staff meetings, legal strategy meetings, and other relevant events.

Read More »

Ascend Justice

Ascend Justice (formerly known as the Domestic Violence Legal Clinic and the Family Defense Center) provides free legal assistance to survivors of domestic violence and families impacted by the child welfare system.

Read More »

Business and Professional People for the Public Interest (BPI)

BPI is a public interest law and policy center that has worked for almost 50 years on compelling social justice issues in the Chicago region. Our current efforts focus on justice reform and police accountability, housing and community development, and public education and early childhood learning.

Read More »

Cabrini Green Legal Aid

Cabrini Green Legal Aid (CGLA) provides high-impact, free legal services to low-income Chicagoans in four areas of law: family, housing, criminal records, and criminal defense. We actively integrate legal and social services in order to improve our legal outcomes and extend our impact beyond crisis support.

Read More »

CARPLS

CARPLS is a legal aid hotline that provides advice, information, and referrals to low-income residents of Cook County. Our mission is to increase access to the legal system for low-income people through our hotline work, as well as through Self-Help Projects, which include written and web-based pro se and client education materials, and our court-based advice desks, which prepare clients to represent themselves on pro se matters.

Read More »

Center for Conflict Resolution

The Center for Conflict Resolution (CCR) is a Chicago-based organization founded in 1979. In the past three decades, CCR has grown to become one of the nation’s premier not-for-profit providers of mediation services and training.

Read More »

Center for Disability and Elder Law (CDEL)

The Center for Disability & Elder Law (CDEL) is a not-for-profit, pro bono Chicago law firm, serving low-income elderly and disabled persons since 1984. With 1,100 volunteer attorneys from throughout Chicago’s distinguished legal community, CDEL handles cases in many practice areas, including estate planning, housing, consumer claims and dissolution of marriage.

Read More »

Chicago Appleseed Fund for Justice

Chicago Appleseed is a social impact research and advocacy organization which uses multidisciplinary research to identify community injustices, and to develop and advocate for practical solutions. We focus on the areas of Criminal Justice Reform, Judicial and Lawyer Ethics, Immigration Court Reform, and Family Law.

Read More »

Chicago Coalition for the Homeless

The Law Project of the Chicago Coalition for the Homeless is the only legal organization in Illinois solely dedicated to providing legal representation and advocacy to homeless or at-risk individuals, youth and families. Our team of six attorneys and intake specialist provide assistance in the areas of education, civil rights, access to health care and public benefits and other civil legal services.

Read More »

Chicago Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights

The Chicago Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights is a non-profit law and advocacy organization, whose mission is to promote and protect the civil rights of poor, minority, and disadvantaged people in order to facilitate their participation in the social, economic, and political systems of our community and nation.

Read More »

Chicago Legal Clinic, Inc.

Founded in 1981, the Chicago Legal Clinic, Inc. provides free or low-cost legal consultations and representation to disadvantaged individuals in the Chicago region from advice desks located at the Richard J. Daley Center: Foreclosure Advice Desk and Parentage and Child Support Pro Se Advice Desk.

Read More »

Chicago Volunteer Legal Services Foundation

With more than 44 years of experience, Chicago Volunteer Legal Services (CVLS) is the first and pre-eminent pro bono civil legal aid provider in Chicago. With its pool of nearly 2,500 volunteer attorneys, CVLS is unique in its ability to offer a wide range of totally free civil legal aid to the poor and working poor on an individual basis.

Read More »

Citizen Advocacy Center

The Citizen Advocacy Center builds democracy for the 21st century by strengthening public participation in community affairs. The Center believes in developing self-government.

Read More »

Environmental Law and Policy Center of the Midwest

The Environmental Law and Policy Center (ELPC), the Midwest’s leading public interest environmental advocacy and eco-business innovation organization, seeks to hire PILI Fellows. Our Fellows support ELPC’s state and federal litigation and policy work throughout the Midwest.

Read More »

Equip for Equality Law Student Intern – Chicago

Equip for Equality, Inc. is a private nonprofit, statewide organization whose mission is to advance the human and civil rights of people with disabilities by promoting the principles of equality, self-determination, and dignity. The five substantive priority areas of Equip for Equality are discrimination, community integration, safety from abuse and neglect, special education and self-determination.

Read More »

Illinois Legal Aid Online

Illinois Legal Aid Online (ILAO), is a non-profit organization that uses technology to help people understand their legal options, make informed decisions and represent themselves in court when a lawyer is out of reach. ILAO evens the playing field for millions of Illinois residents with legal problems by offering 24/7 access to free, reliable legal information and tools on IllinoisLegalAid.org. ILAO serves as the central nervous system for legal aid in Illinois.

Read More »

Lambda Legal

Lambda Legal is a national organization committed to achieving full recognition of the civil right of lesbians, gay men, bisexuals, transgender people and those with HIV, through impact litigation, education, and public policy work.

Read More »

Land of Lincoln Law Student Intern – Alton

Land of Lincoln Legal Assistance Foundation provides free civil legal services through five regional offices to low income individuals and senior citizens in 65 counties in Illinois. The Western Regional Office located in Alton, IL, provides legal services to individuals in 12 counties, ranging from rural to urban, including Madison County, IL, which is in […]

Read More »

Land of Lincoln Law Student Intern – Champaign

In its Eastern Regional Office, located in Champaign, Land of Lincoln Legal Assistance Foundation’s lawyers provide a full range of civil legal assistance to low-income residents of 14 counties in central Illinois, including providing advice and counsel, litigation, and community education.

Read More »

Land of Lincoln Law Student Intern – East St. Louis

In its Central Regional Office, located in East St. Louis, Land of Lincoln Legal Assistance Foundation’s lawyers provide a full range of civil legal assistance to low-income residents, including providing advice, counsel, litigation, and community education.  The Central Regional Office provides legal services to individuals in 7 counties, ranging from rural to urban, including Saint […]

Read More »

Lawyers’ Committee for Better Housing

The Lawyers’ Committee for Better Housing (LCBH) believes that every individual and family is entitled to decent housing as a basic need and human right. LCBH promotes the rights of tenants to safe, accessible, and affordable housing on a non-discriminatory basis through education, outreach, supportive services, advocacy, and legal representation. LCBH has been providing legal services to low-income renters in Chicago for over 37 years.

Read More »

Legal Aid Chicago

Legal Aid Chicago handles a wide spectrum of civil cases on matters of core social and economic importance. Case handlers work in one of five practice groups: Consumer, Family, Housing, Immigrant and Workers’ Rights, and Public Benefits.

Read More »

Legal Aid Society

The Legal Aid Society was established in 1886 and works with its seven social service centers to bring a variety of legal services to Chicago’s most vulnerable citizens in the communities where they live. The Domestic Violence Team focuses on issues related to family law, including domestic violence, divorce, and child custody and support issues.

Read More »

Legal Council for Health Justice

Legal Council for Health Justice (formerly known as the AIDS Legal Council of Chicago) uses the power of the law to secure dignity, opportunity, and well-being for people facing barriers due to illness or disability.

Read More »

Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund

The Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund (MALDEF) is a national Latino civil rights advocacy organization dedicated to preserving and expanding civil rights of Latinos in the areas of immigrant rights, education, political access, employment and public resource equity.

Read More »

Prairie State Legal Services Law Student Intern – Peoria Office

Prairie State Legal Services is a not-for-profit law firm that provides civil legal services at no fee to the poor, elderly, and people with disabilities in 36 counties in northern and central Illinois. In almost all of those counties, Prairie State is the only source of civil legal aid for low-income, elderly and disabled residents. This summer Internship position is available in our Peoria service office, which assists clients in 10 counties in central and western Illinois.

Read More »

Prairie State Legal Services Law Student Intern – Bloomington Office

Prairie State Legal Services is a not-for-profit law firm that provides civil legal services at no fee to the poor, elderly, and people with disabilities in 36 counties in northern and central Illinois. In almost all of those counties, Prairie State is the only source of civil legal aid for low-income, elderly and disabled residents. This summer Internship position is available in our Bloomington office, which assists clients in 3 counties in central Illinois.

Read More »

Prairie State Legal Services Law Student Intern – Rock Island Office

Prairie State Legal Services is a not-for-profit law firm that provides civil legal services at no fee to the poor, elderly, and people with disabilities in 36 counties in northern and central Illinois outside of Cook County. In almost all of those counties, Prairie State is the only source of civil legal aid for low-income, […]

Read More »

The Shriver Center on Poverty Law

The Shriver Center on Poverty Law fights for economic and racial justice. Over our 50-year history, we have secured hundreds of victories with and for people living in poverty in Illinois and across the country. Today, we litigate, shape policy, and train and convene multi-state networks of lawyers, community leaders, and activists nationwide. Together, we are building a future where all people have equal dignity, respect, and power under the law.

Read More »

U.S. Department of Health & Human Services’ Office of Civil Rights

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), through the Office for Civil Rights (OCR), promotes and ensures that people have equal access to, and opportunity to participate in, and receive services from all HHS programs without facing unlawful discrimination. OCR also ensures that the privacy and security of individuals’ health information is protected while ensuring access to care. Through prevention and elimination of unlawful discrimination, and by protecting the privacy and security of individually identifiable health information, OCR helps HHS carry out its overall mission of improving the health and well-being of all people affected by its many programs.

Read More »

U.S. Department of Health & Human Services’ Office of General Counsel

With over 400 attorneys nationwide located in nine headquarters offices and ten regional offices, the Office of the General Counsel (OGC) of the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services (HHS) provides a full range of legal services to HHS, the federal government’s principal agency for protecting the health of all Americans and providing essential human services, especially for those who are least able to help themselves. Our work presents complex and challenging social, economic, scientific, ethical and legal issues, issues that affect the lives of virtually all Americans

Read More »

Stay Connected. Sign Up For Our Newsletter: