There is no situation which absolutely requires a personal immigration lawyer. Be careful not to misread that. I didn’t say that immigration lawyers aren’t valuable; they just aren’t required.
The fact is that hiring a good immigration attorney is a matter of preference. As an immigration attorney me personally, I can safely say that some immigration matters probably do not need the attention of an immigration attorney. If an individual must renew her green card, there’s a form for that can easily be seen on USCIS’s web site, and she can fill it out herself plus pay the fee. It’s that simple. Don’t waste your money on an immigration attorney to do this for you.
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Other immigration matters, while seemingly straightforward to the untrained eye, can turn into a good immigrant’s worst nightmare if the girl omits something in her documents or admits something that gets the girl into immigration trouble that she wouldn’t have otherwise been in. For instance , an individual with a criminal record (such as a conviction based upon shoplifting a group of gum five years ago! ) who applies for naturalization might be put into removal proceedings. Please don’t allow that happen to you.
Then there are the incredibly difficult immigration issues that individuals usually have absolutely no idea how to deal with, such as submitting complicated waiver apps, navigating all the different types of employment-based visa for australia categories, or (heaven forbid) being placed in removal proceedings which requires at least several hearings in Immigration Court.
That being said, there are several very good reasons why people hire immigration lawyers:
(1) Immigration law is complex. In 2005, the Congressional Research Assistance reported: “The statutory scheme defining and delimiting the rights associated with aliens is exceedingly complex. Tennis courts and commentators have stated the fact that Immigration and Nationality Act appears like ‘King Mino’s labyrinth in historic Crete, ‘ and is ‘second simply to the Internal Revenue Code in complexness. ‘
Finding someone who can get around the complicated immigration laws can mean the difference between being able to live and work in the U. S. plus being forced to leave. Legacy INS Spokesperson Karen Kraushaar stated that will “immigration law is a mystery and a mastery of obfuscation, and the lawyers who can figure it out are worth their weight in silver. ”
There are, however , some migration attorneys who either cannot or at least have not yet figured it out. In a legislation review article written by Judge Richard Posner of the Seventh Circuit Courtroom of Appeals and Northwestern School Law Professor Albert Yoon, it is noted that a panel of judges were asked which area of the law had the lowest quality lawyers. The judges “agreed that immigration legislation was the area in which the quality associated with representation was lowest. ”
The particular lesson from all of this? Yes, immigration law is complex, but it is important to find an immigration attorney who are able to figure it out.
(2) Migration lawyers can fend off future migration problems. Because of the complexity of immigration law, it’s difficult for individuals trying to handle an immigration case on their own to get up to speed on the immigration laws and regulations. This is especially important if time is running against you, which usually it almost always is in immigration issues. Retired U. S. Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens has stated in the context of jailed immigrants that “the need for lawful representation for immigrants has grown therefore acute and the consequences so extreme that something must be done. ” If immigration attorneys are useless, then the U. S. Supreme Court Justice would never have made such a remark.
Individuals sometimes think they do not need an immigration attorney because they don’t have any immigration problems. For a lot of people, that may be true. But for some people, it’s not that they terribly lack immigration problems, but it’s they don’t know that they have immigration problems. “Oh? You mean that if I leave the U. S. right now I won’t be able to come back for 10 years? ” Indeed, I am sorry. If that individual had observed an immigration attorney a year ago, generally there may have been something the attorney could have advised in order to prevent her present immigration predicament. Not seeing an attorney when in doubt can result in a lot of “could have, would have, should have” claims.
(3) Immigration lawyers do it much better (statistically speaking). Statistics can be dubious and misleading, so I don’t like with them lightly. However , the statistics which i is about to share with you are verifiable and are worth your attention. Lawyers cannot guarantee a successful outcome whatever the case. In fact , lawyers should specifically say to every new client that “I cannot guarantee a successful outcome to suit your needs. ” The lawyer can then provide these statistics:
In the context of removal proceedings (where the immigrant is not detained):
The immigrant is successful in immigration court 74% of times when represented by a lawyer;
The particular immigrant is successful in immigration court 13% of the time when NOT represented with a lawyer.
In the context of asylum cases:
Out of 37, 266 affirmative asylum cases, 36. 8 % of claimants who were represented had been granted asylum, compared to 4. zero percent who were not represented;
Out of 16, 180 defensive asylum situations, 25. 9 percent of persons who were represented were granted asylum, compared to 7. 4 percent who had been not represented.
These statistics are not meant to be used as a sales pitch to a client wondering whether or not she ought to hire an immigration lawyer, or even whether to hire you or I as her lawyer. Rather, they are meant to provide a wake-up call to the client, in essence saying, “Immigration regulation is complex. You can do this on your own you can also hire a lawyer to guide you. ” In case staying in the U. S. is important to the client, the choice is clear.
Migration lawyers do much more than simply complete immigration forms. We can spot immigration problems before they occur, and advise a client accordingly. When we believe the client does not have a good case, all of us tell them, and suggest ways in order to build a stronger case. When we have to fight the government, we get ready legal briefs in support of our justifications and make appearances in immigration and consular officers with our clients. We offer strategies for successful outcomes in immigration interviews, and inform customers of potential pitfalls to avoid at these interviews. As you can see, all the proof supports the case that immigration attorneys are invaluable.