About California Indian Legal Services

We are one of the oldest not-for-profit law firms in the country that specializes in matters of Federal Indian Law to protect the rights of Tribes and Tribal peoples.

Our History

CILS has provided free and low-cost legal services to California Tribes, Tribal organizations, and Native American individuals throughout the State since 1967. Get to know us and the work we do.

Individual AIANs

CILS understands the legal needs of individual Native Americans and provides services that reflect the diverse experiences of our clients.

The Three Pillars
Of Our Service


CILS has strong partnerships with Tribal governments and organizations, demonstrating a shared understanding of the the needs and goals of their citizens and governing bodies.

Community Education

CILS is dedicated to advancing Indian rights through education We are at the forefront of bringing relevant and meaningful training and community education to tribal communities and the organizations who serve them.

Our Mission

The mission of CILS is to protect and advance Indian rights, Indian self-determination, and Tribal nation-building.

Our Vision

The vision of CILS is to ensure all Native Americans have access to services and resources to thrive, where their civil rights are protected free from discrimination in all areas of their lives. All Tribal Nations are strong independent governments that provide for their members, determine their own laws, and are governed by them without interference from local, state, or federal governments.

Our Strategic Plan

We are dedicated to improving our organization and community through our five-year Strategic Plan, which outlines our four major goals through 2028.

Our Service Area

With field offices in Bishop, Escondido, McKinleyville and Sacramento, we are able to offer comprehensive services to individuals and tribes in every California county. Each of our offices work closely with the individuals and Tribes in their respective service areas to build relations and nourish cultures.

Annual Reports

Each year we compile the successes we are proudest of from our work across California. See where we’ve been, who we’ve impacted, and how everything we do fits together to contribute to the strength and longevity of Tribes throughout the state.

Proudly Supported By California Tribes