Seattle-King County Immigrant Legal Defense Network

Have you or someone you know received a notice from immigration court or been detained by ICE?

If you are in need of immigration legal services and cannot pay for them, the Seattle-King County Immigrant Legal Defense Network may be able to help.

To see if you are eligible for free legal services, call one of these organizations:

To qualify for FREE Legal Defense Network assistance, you must:

  • Be an immigrant in detention, facing deportation, or at risk because of your immigration status;
  • Live or work in Seattle or live in King County; AND
  • Have a household income below 200% of the federal poverty level.

 

2019-23 Awards for Legal Services for Immigrants and Refugees Announced

On May 29, 2019, Seattle Mayor Jenny A. Durkan and King County Executive Dow Constantine announced the grantees of the Expanded Seattle-King County Immigrant Legal Defense Fund (ELDF). The ELDF grants $5.6 million to community-based organizations working to provide legal services to immigrants and refugees at risk of deportation. ELDF funding is divided into two categories:

1. Legal Services to Immigrants and Refugees - Total Awarded: $5,446,333

The majority of these funds are reserved for legal representation for low-income Seattle workers and King County residents who are in detention, facing deportation, or in danger of losing their status, with a smaller portion available for organizations to build their capacity to be able to offer legal services to this population.

  • Kids in Need of Defense (KIND): $860,000
  • Northwest Immigrant Rights Project (NWIRP) and Colectiva Legal del Pueblo joint application: $2,665,000
  • West African Community Council (WACC): $748,000
  • Asian Counseling and Referral Services (ACRS) - Legal Defense Team: $493,333
  • Entre Hermanos: $680,000

2. Mental Health Assessments - Total Awarded: $200,000

These funds will be used to provide mental health assessments that support legal services for immigrants and refugees who are facing or are at risk of facing deportation (or "removal proceedings").

  • Lutheran Community Services - Refugees Northwest: $200,000

Grantee organizations are expected to start offering services in June 2019.

 

Challenges and Results to Date

According to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) statistics, Washington State experienced a 25 percent increase in arrests and an 88 percent increase in deportations the year after Trump's election. This includes a 210 percent increase in arrests and a 29 percent increase in deportations of people without criminal convictions. From October 2017 to April 2019, Legal Defense Network partners utilized $1.8 million to:

  • Screen 1,072 individuals.
  • Conduct 885 intake assessments.
  • Provide direct representation for 357 individuals
  • Place another 12 individuals with pro bono attorneys.
  • Provide legal advice to an additional 339 individuals.

For any questions related to the RFP process, please contact Katherine Cortes at katherine.cortes@seattle.gov or (206) 733-9116.

For any media-related questions regarding LDN, please contact Joaquin Uy at joaquin.uy@seattle.gov or (206) 684-0155.

 

Banner photo credit: Alabastro Photography.