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Attorney (Temporary, Full-time)

Medical-Legal Partnership | Boston (MLP | Boston)


Boston, MA

Launched in 1993, Medical-Legal Partnership | Boston (MLP | Boston) equips healthcare, public health, and social services teams with legal problem-solving strategies that advance health equity. Informed by a public health lens and interdisciplinary approaches, we both anticipate and address health-related social needs, many of which have legal remedies. Our services improve the health and well-being of vulnerable people populations, thereby promoting health equity.

MLP | Boston supports 10+ partner sites in screening for and identifying patient/consumer’s health-related social needs that may be amenable to legal remedies; we prioritize upstream, preventive law strategies that detect and triage risks before they evolve into legal (and health) crises, including trainings, advocacy tools (such as our branded It Takes Two guides for patients and providers), and rapid access to problem-solving consultation for partner teams. In some cases, we facilitate free legal assistance for individuals/families with acute or complex legal needs through legal services programs and private bar volunteers (including over 20 law firm and in-house pro bono partners). In addition, we are engaged in several research studies seeking to measure the impacts of MLP interventions, in efforts to bridge healthcare reform and evidence-based practices that address health-related social needs (a core element of a health care, not a “sick care”, system); and in providing technical assistance on several projects calling for MLP best practices.

Our program is the founding site of the national MLP network. The MLP model has been endorsed by the American Medical Association, the American Bar Association, and a host of other professional organizations that evaluate emerging innovation and best practices. After 20 years of successful incubation at Boston Medical Center, in July 2012 MLP | Boston became a fiscally sponsored program of Third Sector New England, Inc. We seek to hire a full-time attorney whose primary responsibility will be to support core program services in the Department of Pediatrics at Boston Medical Center, our founding healthcare partner site. This temporary position currently is funded through June 30, 2017.

Key Responsibilities

Training and Workforce Development

• Support partner team(s) in their efforts to detect, triage, and address patient-consumers’ health-related social needs by:

  • Regularly attending team meetings (an essential component of MLP integration)
  • Developing and delivering advocacy trainings to clinical, allied professional, and pro bono audiences
  • Designing and disseminating advocacy tools appropriate for clinical and allied staff
  • Developing screening tools that equip team members to accurately detect patient-consumer’s health-related social needs that may have legal remedies
  • Supporting clinician-driven integration of MLP screening and response practices in the Electronic Health Record and other Quality Improvement contexts
  • Responding thoughtfully and creatively to a high volume of consults from clinical and allied staff on behalf of patients-consumers; in many instances developing a socio-legal care plan for the staff member to implement, including conveyance of legal information to the patient-consumer
  • In some instances, facilitating placement of patient-consumers’ legal cases with legal community resources (including our pro bono panel)

Quality Management

  • Maintain timely documentation of all activities on central case management database
  • Prepare regular reports on services and outcomes, identifying trends in patient-consumer needs and highlighting health equity implications
  • Cultivate and nurture relationships with professional networks that enhance our capacity to provide quality consultation as legal generalists
  • Bring a health disparities reduction lens (on behalf of all disparities populations) to the role, including collaboration with appropriate coalitions in the Commonwealth and nationally

Policy Improvement

  • Identify opportunities to influence policy in collaboration with partner teams in ways that will promote the health of vulnerable populations

Organizational Development

  • Support research and evaluation activities, including efforts to demonstrate impact on the Triple Aim
  • Support best practice dissemination, including participation in conferences and publications
  • Support fundraising through grant proposal and report drafting, participation in funder site visits, etc.
  • Supervision of interns
  • Miscellaneous / general non-profit “pitching in” – including but not limited to coverage of “legal triage” consults related to other projects as needed


  • JD required; MPH, MSW, RN, MPP or other public health/public policy-related credential highly valued
  • Massachusetts bar admission
  • Current BBO registration; disciplinary history in good standing
  • At least 4-6 years of legal practice experience relating to vulnerable populations
  • Demonstrated interest in working in the public interest sector
  • Ability to work independently
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills; specifically: versatility in communicating effectively with, and translating “legalese” for, a range of stakeholders
  • Enthusiasm for a generalist legal practice that accounts for the complex social context confronting many low-income, medically vulnerable patients
  • Appreciation of a non-traditional lawyering opportunity that places a premium on (a) interdisciplinary collaboration, (b) train-the-trainer approaches to legal information dissemination and socio-legal problem-solving, (c) allied professionals as the primary consumer, and vulnerable people and populations the intended beneficiaries of our work
  • Dedication to diversity- and trauma-informed advocacy practice
  • Consciousness of vicarious trauma and the challenges our clinical colleagues and we face in managing the stress of our work
  • Can-do attitude and commitment to contributing to a positive, collegial work environment

To Apply:

We strongly encourage online applications. Please include a resume and a cover letter. To apply visit

We also accept applications by mail or fax. Apply by mail to:

Third Sector New England, Attn: Employment Manager, NonProfit Center, 89 South Street Boston, MA 02111; or by fax to 617.523.2070.

As an EOE/AA employer, TSNE and Medical-Legal Partnership | Boston will not discriminate in its employment practices due to an applicant’s race, color, religion, sex, national origin, sexual orientation, gender identification, and veteran or disability status.