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Justice & Diversity Center: Legal Services Program

Attorney of the Day Program

About the AOD Program

Are you are an immigration attorney looking to take on pro bono work, gain valuable court experience, and support unrepresented families and children facing deportation? Consider joining the Attorney of the Day Program to provide counseling and same-day representation to individuals in detained-and non-detained removal proceedings before the San Francisco Immigration Court.
AODs provide an invaluable service to people unable to find or afford their own counsel. They conduct individual consultations, provide legal advice and referrals, help respondents navigate courtroom procedures, and advocate for them before the Immigration Judge. Whenever possible, JDC staff members conduct follow up with respondents and refer them to nonprofits for full-scope removal defense.
The AOD Program began nearly 30 years ago and was coordinated by The Bar Association of San Francisco until 2017, when JDC assumed management of the program.

Become an Attorney of the Day

Qualified applicants must have:

  1. At least two years* of current and active removal defense experience, AND
  2. The range of knowledge and skills required for the desired docket type, including:
    • Significant experience representing individuals at master calendar and merits hearings,
    • Significant experience conducting full-scope consultations regarding removability and relief,
    • Experience assessing immigration consequences of arrests/convictions,
    • Flexibility, tenacity, and a commitment to protecting the due process rights of pro se respondents.
  3. Ability to communicate with monolingual Spanish-speaking respondents. Whenever possible, JDC will arrange for volunteer interpretation for AODs who are not fluent in Spanish and not able to bring their own interpreters to court.

*Note: Attorneys with at least one year of active removal defense experience may apply to participate in a training program to become qualified AODs for the detained dockets. Candidates should complete and submit the application below. A training will be offered in early 2018.

Application and Recertification

November 2017 Update: We are excited to introduce updates and improvements to the AOD Program. Given these changes, we are asking all current AODs to re-certify and attend an in-person orientation. To be considered for an orientation date in January 2018, please submit your application by December 15, 2017. An additional orientation will be offered in April 2018, and all AODs must complete recertification by May 30, 2018.

Download and complete the AOD Application.

Both new applicants and current AODs should follow these procedures for application and recertification:

  1. Complete and submit the AOD Application by email, mail, or fax:
    • Email:
    • Fax: (415) 477-2390
    • Mail: Immigrant Legal Defense Program
      The Justice & Diversity Center
      301 Battery Street, 3rd Floor
      San Francisco, CA 94111

  2. Interview with the Justice & Diversity Center by phone.

  3. Attend an in-person orientation:
    • January 25, 2018, 4:30 – 7 PM (San Jose, CA)
    • January 31, 2018, 4:30 – 7 PM (San Francisco, CA)
    • April 2018 orientation dates forthcoming

Become a Volunteer Interpreter
If you are fluent in Spanish and English and interested in gaining experience interpreting in an immigration legal setting, we invite you to become a volunteer interpreter for the AOD Program. A volunteer shift involves spending approximately 2-3 hours at the San Francisco Immigration Court to interpret during AODs’ free consultations with unrepresented respondents.
To learn more, please contact

AOD Program Materials

Materials for Unrepresented Respondents

* Hard copies of these materials are available in the pro bono rooms at 100 Montgomery Street on the floors 4, 8, and 9.