How To Find a Good Immigration Lawyer
If you need help with an immigration matter, you might be looking for an experienced immigration lawyer to help you with your case. Getting your visa, green card, or citizenship can be one of the greatest moments of your life, but there’s no doubt that the process to get there can be stressful and confusing, especially if English is not your first language. A good immigration attorney can help you navigate the system, explain your rights and responsibilities to you, solve problems, and help you get the outcome you’re seeking. But how do you find a good immigration attorney to help you? Read on to find out.
What to Look for In an Immigration Attorney
Before you start looking for a lawyer, it’s important to know what you’re looking for.
Immigration as a primary practice area. Law, like medicine, is a specialized field, and the majority of attorneys take cases in just a few main areas of practice. This allows them to get the experience and deeper knowledge they need to be more effective for their clients. Just as you’d go to a heart specialist for heart troubles, you should go to an immigration lawyer for help with your immigration case. This may sound obvious, but it can be tempting to ask a friend or relative who is an attorney to help you with your situation for free, even if they have no background in immigration. But think twice before doing this. Immigration laws are strict, and even something like filing paperwork too late can mean the difference between staying in the U.S. and being forced to leave. When it comes to immigration issues, you have too much at stake to work with an attorney with little to no experience in immigration law.
Years of experience. Experience in Immigration law matters. Ideally, you should work with an attorney who has at least 5-10 years of experience handling immigration cases like the kind you need help with.
Up to date. Immigration law is changing all the time. You only have to watch the news to know that immigration policies are subject to politics and can change suddenly. An attorney who dedicates a significant amount of their time to immigration matters will be current with the latest changes in policies, laws, and forms. They will know what’s on the horizon so they have an idea of what’s coming next. This kind of attorney is proactive about staying informed so they can best represent their clients. This is the kind of attorney you want representing you.
A problem solver. Many good lawyers are good problem solvers. But this skill is invaluable in immigration law. It’s not unusual for a client to seek help from an immigration attorney after they’ve already broken the law – maybe without even knowing it. In these situations, getting a successful outcome is not simply a matter of filing the right forms on time but a matter of figuring out the right strategy to achieve a desirable outcome. An immigration attorney who’s good at solving problems will review all the options, draw on past experiences, and be creative in coming up with new solutions. If your immigration issue is particularly complex, you should make it a priority to look for such an attorney.
Optional: language(s) other than English. It’s challenging enough to live daily life in a country where you don’t know the language well. Having to discuss legal matters in another language is even more difficult. That’s why you may want to find an attorney who either speaks your language or has people on staff that do. The process will be much less stressful if you can discuss it in your native tongue. Here at The Carolina Law Group, we have many Spanish speakers on our team to better help our clients in the Hispanic community with their immigration needs, and we offer Hindi and Gujurati translation services, too.
Good reputation. Work with an attorney who has a good reputation among your friends and family, their past clients, and/or the legal community. An attorney with a good reputation will have more favorable reviews than unfavorable ones online, may hold positions of responsibility in community or legal associations, and may have received recognition and accolades. For example, attorneys of The Carolina Law Group have been listed among the Legal Elite, the Million Dollar Advocates Forum, National Trial Lawyers Top 40 under 40, and Super Lawyers Rising Stars, among others. Accolades like these show that the attorney is recognized and respected by their clients, their peers, and their profession.
Good communication. One of the biggest complaints people have about their attorneys is how hard it is to get a hold of them. While you’re going through one of the most stressful experiences of your life, trying to recover from an accident and get much needed damages, you need to know that your attorney is concerned about you and moving your case forward. Look for a lawyer who makes it a priority to keep the lines of communication open. Here at The Carolina Law Group, we make sure to keep our clients up-to-date on the status of their case through regular contact with their case manager. Plus, we actually give our clients our personal cell phone numbers so they know they can contact us if they need to, which is very rare in our profession!
Good support staff. You shouldn’t expect to work exclusively with your attorney 100% of the time. It’s common practice to work closely with other members of the support staff, such as paralegals. That’s why it’s important to find a law firm with a team you like and trust, as it can make all the difference between a pleasant experience and a stressful one.
Schedule a Consultation with the Immigration Attorneys at The Carolina Law Group
Choosing an immigration attorney to represent you may feel like a daunting task but hopefully the information above helps. We encourage you to call us at one of the numbers below to schedule your free, no-obligation consultation with us. The immigration attorneys at The Carolina Law Group have helped individuals, families, and businesses in South Carolina with:
– Permanent resident status (aka “green card”)
– Adjustment of status (AOS)
– Change of nonimmigrant status
– Deportation/removal proceedings
– Family visa matters
– Visa extension
– Overseas consular processing
– B-1/B-2 Visa – Visitor
– EB-1 Visa – Employment
– EB-5 Visa – Employment creation/Immigrant investor
– F-1 Visa – Student
– J-1 Visa – Visitor and intercultural exchange
– K-1 Visa – Fiancé(e)
Our experienced attorneys are here to help you navigate the complex world of immigration law, and our bilingual staff is here to help the Spanish-speaking members of our community so the process is more productive and less stressful. Call us today at one of the numbers below to schedule your free, no-obligation consultation.
The Carolina Law Group has four offices in South Carolina for your convenience: Greenville (principal office; call 864.312.4444), Greer (principal office; call 864.757.5555), Spartanburg (principal office; call 864.757.5555), and West Columbia (principal office; call 803.881.1110).
Call us at one of our four offices or contact us online to schedule your free consultation with one of our attorneys. Our business hours are Monday – Thursday 8:30am – 5:30pm & Friday 8:30 am – 5 pm. Weekend and evening hours by appointment only.