NYWBA Foundation Fellow Reports on her Experience at inMotion
By jacquelyn Bradford
I was fortunate to be selected as the NYWBA Foundation inMotion Fellow for Spring 2012. I spent this spring working in the Manhattan office of inMotion. inMotion serves low-income women throughout New York City by providing free legal services in matrimonial, family, and immigration law. Many of inMotion's clients have experienced domestic violence in the past or are currently in need of protection from the threat of violence. These clients do not have the means to afford an attorney and often find navigating the legal system to be not only a challenge but a barrier to enforcing their rights. InMotion helps to fulfill these needs for legal counsel and representation by connecting women in need with volunteer lawyers and providing inhouse legal services.
My work at inMotion focused primarily on matrimonial and family law. I answered inMotion's intake hotline, where I interviewed potential clients and provided referrals to callers who were in need of services that inMotion did not provide. Answering the hotline allowed me to develop interviewing and issue-spotting skills. I also worked on uncontested divorce cases. I had the opportunity to work with a client from the beginning of her case— interviewing her, explaining the divorce process, and drafting court documents and motions for her case. It was very rewarding to hear her story, including all of the challenges that she has overcome, and to know that I was helping her achieve closure by enabling her to legally sever the remaining ties she had to her abuser. Lastly, I had the chance to work on legal research questions, improving my research skills and deepening my substantive knowledge of matrimonial and family law.
InMotion has a friendly and supportive office environment. Everyone is committed to making a positive impact in their clients lives and to collaborating with one another to achieve this goal. I appreciated getting to know my supervising attorneys and the time they spent providing training, answering my questions, and providing feedback on my work. My fellowship with inMotion reinforced my commitment to a career in public service and desire to work with vulnerable populations. I would recommend volunteering with inMotion to both students and attorneys interested in family, matrimonial, or immigration law. I also thank the NYWBA Foundation for this valuable and fulfilling opportunity.
© 2012 NYWBA All Rights Reserved.