Michigan Legal Help Program

Location: Ann Arbor, Michigan


About: The Michigan Legal Help website and affiliated local self-help centers are part of the Michigan Legal Help Program. The Program works with judges, courts, lawyers, bar associations, nonprofit legal aid agencies, legal self-help centers, libraries and many others to promote coordinated and quality assistance for persons representing themselves in civil legal matters in Michigan.

Fellowship Overview

Michigan Legal Help Program seeks a full-time, 10-week fellow to be part of the team responsible for the Michigan Law Help Website. MLHP was created to help people who have to handle simple civil legal problems without a lawyer. One primary product of the MLHP is MichiganLegalHelp.org, an interactive, statewide website that provides legal information and referrals to self-represented litigants. Legal information includes Articles, Common Questions, procedural instructions, and Do-It-Yourself interviews that enable litigants to complete their own legal forms. The website also contains jurisdiction- and topic-specific referrals to legal services offices, lawyer referral services, and community organizations.

Fellows Duties

The Fellow will assist with content development and maintenance for the Michigan Legal Help website (reviewing & updating existing legal information content according to Quality Assurance Protocols; conducting research and drafting new legal information content for the website; learning plain language writing skills; etc.); participate in the drafting and testing of new Do-It-Yourself document assembly form interviews; assist with staffing LiveHelp (chat-based to website visitors); and engage in other projects that are active during the course of their fellowship, which in 2018 will focus on testing interviews migrated from A2J 4 to A2J 6, and possibly participating in the process of migrating the interviews or creating new interviews in A2J Author. The Fellow's duties will be determined in part by the Fellow's areas of interest and relevant skills.

Competencies Include

  • Excellent oral and written communication skills.
  • Excellent legal research skills.
  • Commitment to the mission and vision of Michigan Law Help.
  • Ability to prioritize and manage projects and tasks to meet deadlines.
  • Self-motivated and able and work independently.
  • Creativity and willingness to take on challenging projects.
  • Experience with using technology including document assembly, websites and video conferencing, preferred.