Given the current landscape of our immigration system, immigration law is a hot topic right now. In the wake of the president’s Executive Order, and the anticipation of the revised order expected this week, many immigrants have been seeking assistance to learn about their rights and to protect themselves. Unfortunately, there are a lot of people who will use this situation to prey on vulnerable immigrants. Before speaking to or paying anyone for legal assistance, please make sure that they are in fact a licensed attorney. In Massachusetts, you can verify whether someone is an attorney by entering their name here.
Secondly, please make sure that the person you are consulting about immigration issues has experience practicing immigration law. The U.S. immigration system is very complex, so the person who helps you should have adequate experience in this area of law. It is better to spend the money on a lawyer who knows what s/he is doing than to cut corners and risk having to pay more money to fix any problems that may come up; or worse, being denied a benefit because the person you hired incorrectly completed your paperwork.
Lastly, please make sure you get everything in writing. If you are hiring someone to help you with your immigration case, there should be a written agreement that clearly explains the services that the lawyer will be providing to you, what the lawyer expects from you, and how much it will cost for the lawyer to help you. Try not to pay your lawyer in cash. If you must pay your lawyer in cash, make sure you get a receipt. Having a paper trail protects both you and the lawyer.
Immigration issues are complex and emotional so make sure that you’re seeking advice and counsel from someone who is knowledgeable about the unique challenges that lie ahead.
If you have any questions about your immigration status, please don’t hesitate to contact us.