For many, moving to America is a dream that can take many months or even years to achieve. Due to the complex immigration process, many foreigners applying for U.S. residency run into problems or delays when applying for a visa. To help streamline the process and reduce the risk of disruptions, many applicants choose to work with an experienced immigration attorney.
When seeking out an expert in the field, it is important to understand that not all attorneys are the same. Ideally, you want to find an attorney that will maintain a line of communication, deliver guidance, and diminish any concerns you may have. Here are just a few tips on how to find a good immigration attorney.
Get a Trusted Referral
While you can find a wealth of information on the internet about personal experiences with immigration attorneys, there is no better source of information than what comes from word of mouth. Speak with your friends, family, and acquaintances to see what immigration attorneys they have worked with in the past, and which they recommend and which they do not recommend.
Through word-of-mouth referrals, you can learn how the experience of working with a certain immigration attorney or law practice was firsthand. While a trusted referral should not be your only source of reference when choosing an immigration attorney, it can act as an effective starting point.
Look at References and Reviews
Once you have narrowed down your list to just a few potential attorneys, schedule a consultation with each option. An immigration attorney will get you in quickly for a brief consultation in which he or she will provide you with recommendations for visa options. The attorney will also go over the basic process of applying for and acquiring a U.S. visa.
After you meet with the attorney, you may search online for reviews from previous clients. Yelp, Google, Avvom, or a Bar Association reference check are just a few of the resources where you can find information about nearly any U.S. attorney or law practice.
Hire a Law Firm Who Speaks Your Language
When it comes to something as important as getting your visa, you do not want to run into problems simply due to language barriers. When choosing an immigration attorney, be sure to choose someone who speaks your language fluently, or who has staff that can speak your language fluently. This can help ensure that there are no miscommunications during the process and that you fully understand the various legal aspects of your case.
Choosing an immigration law firm that speaks your language not only improves communication and enhances the attorney-client relationship, but can also come in handy in other ways. For example, if you have legal documents that you have written in English from your native tongue, a qualified attorney and his or her legal staff can review these and ensure that your English is accurate and that there are no spelling, grammatical, or wording errors that could interfere with your ability to be approved for a visa.
Talk to More than One Attorney
While all attorneys are different, most will give you the same basic advice based on your unique case and the type of visa you are looking to obtain. If you find that an attorney is making claims that do not seem to be truthful or are far different than what others have told you, be wary. For this reason and others, it is important to speak with more than one attorney. Take this time to experience their personalities, demeanors, and ability to handle your case.
By talking to several immigration attorneys before making your decision, you can also create a basis for comparison. Even if an attorney is fully qualified to take on your case, you may feel like something is “off.” Trust your gut and opt for a different attorney whom you feel more comfortable with. As the process to obtain a visa can be long, you want to ensure that you are working with an attorney that you trust and can communicate with.
Speak with an Immigration Attorney Today
Choosing the right immigration attorney to represent you can be a very difficult decision. It is important to find a law professional that is not only qualified to take on your case, but also has the time, ability, and mindset needed to devote to your situation. The immigration process often involves a lot of paperwork, filing of petitions, and submission of important documents. Just one small mishap could result in weeks or even months of delays. The right immigration attorney can help ensure that the process goes smoothly and provide you with peace of mind. For more information or to speak with an immigration attorney, reach out to the legal professionals at Johnson & Masumi PC.