National Immigrant Justice Center

About National Immigrant Justice Center

Heartland Alliance's National Immigrant Justice Center (NIJC) is dedicated to ensuring human rights protections and access to justice for all immigrants, refugees and asylum seekers.

NIJC provides direct legal services to and advocates for these populations through policy reform, impact litigation, and public education. Since its founding three decades ago, NIJC has been unique in blending individual client advocacy with broad-based systemic change.

Partnering with the legal community
Thanks to the support of hundreds of pro bono attorneys from the nation's leading law firms, NIJC has made critical advances in the lives of hundreds of thousands of vulnerable immigrants, refugees and asylum seekers. NIJC provides legal services to more than 10,000 individuals each year and maintains a success rate of 90 percent in obtaining asylum for those fleeing persecution in their home countries. NIJC and its pro bono attorneys have been on the vanguard of federal impact litigation and advocacy, setting positive precedents for those seeking human rights protections within our borders.


Detention Project Intern

May 2019 - August 2019 Chicago, IL
“Excellent hands on experience: -conducting intake interviews with potential immigrant clients, both in person at a detention center and over the phone -translating immigration court documents -conducting country conditions research for asylum cases -chance to witness immigration court proceedings, client preparation for testimony, etc. -obtained a working understanding of immigration law Other advantages: -Wonderful location on Michigan Avenue right across from the Art Institute and the lake, super accessible via the Loop (public transportation.) -Amazing, kind coworkers and supervisors who treated me like an equal (not just an intern) and asked me what I wanted to get out of the experience and helped me achieve those goals. Very willing to get lunch and give career advice.”

Paralegal Intern

June 2018 - August 2018 Chicago, IL
“I enjoyed the legal research, interviewing clients, and helping clients to file legal documents to apply for visas and relief from deportation”
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