How Catholic Charities Supports Pro Bono Volunteer Advocates

How We’re Different

Catholic Charities knows that you have a choice when it comes to pro bono partnership.  Our vision to increase access to immigration legal services throughout the state of New York relies on you, the pro bono volunteer advocate.  We take our commitment to you seriously!  Catholic Charities has the tools to ensure that you feel confident, competent and empowered to represent an immigrant client, regardless of your experience level.

  • Responsiveness.  We know that as a pro bono volunteer advocate, if you have a question, it’s our role to help you find the answer. Our team is committed to providing you with the best possible pro bono experience. We know that you have a choice when it comes to pro bono partners and we want to always be your first!

  • Immediate and Strong Mentorship.  Our pro bono team is one of the best in the country. Not only are our Pro Bono Supervising Attorneys specialists in their practice areas, we also are supported by more than 40 colleagues who are preeminent experts in every immigration-related subject area.

  • Expert Training and Practice Templates at your Fingertips.  We know that immigration practice is challenging! Collectively, our team has been at this work for more than 25 years. Our experience, resources and partnerships combine to ensure that you never feel alone or unsupported, whether this is your first immigration case or your fiftieth.

Finding the Right Case for You

Our primary goal is finding the pro bono matter that is perfect fit for you at this time in your life.  Catholic Charities serves only the most vulnerable immigrant clients with a wide variety of case types, including but not limited to:

  • Affirmative/defensive asylum (Help immigrants who are afraid to return to their home country.)
  • Affirmative/defensive special immigrant juvenile status (Help immigrant youth who have been abused, abandoned or neglected.)
  • Other types of removal defense (Help immigrants fighting for their right to remain in the United States.)
  • Relief for survivors of violence (Help women & children who have been crime victims gain stability and safety.)
  • Other affirmative applications (Help families to reunite and stay together.)
  • Our cases are both affirmative (non-adversarial) and defensive (meaning that they require appearing before the Immigration Court.)

Catholic Charities’ Pro Bono Legal Manager will work with you to determine which of our cases fit your volunteer needs, taking into account availability and time limitations, language skills, desire (or not) for court experience and geographic preferences.

Case Placement: What to Expect

The Catholic Charities Pro Bono Team will work with you to ensure that your experience is supported and successful.  After you have expressed interest in a pro bono matter, Catholic Charities' Pro Bono Legal Manager will contact you with information with which to run a conflicts check for your potential client.  After clearance, you should receive your formal case placement package within 7-10 days.  Your Pro Bono Supervising Attorney will contact you shortly after placement to schedule a case launch call.  


Once your case has been placed, Catholic Charities can provide support in a variety of ways:

  • Identifying client meeting space
  • Interpretation & other case support (think: how a legal assistant or paralegal might support an attorney)
  • Malpractice insurance
  • Training
  • Mentorship & technical assistance
  • Case strategy
  • Document & application review
  • Trial preparation