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How to Choose the Best Immigration Attorney in New York

November 10, 2021

A good relationship with an immigration attorney is important both for those already in the United States and those looking to enter the country. An experienced immigration attorney is your best defender when your right to live and thrive on American soil is challenged.

Attorneys with expertise in their field have years of training and practice, giving them the tools needed to fight for and protect your rights and legal status. They will also be able to guide you through every step of the immigration process, monitoring immigration applications and courtroom proceedings. This knowledge, expertise, and dedication to your case will allow you to avoid mistakes that can lead to unnecessary delays or denials.

The right immigration lawyers can offer you assistance with a variety of immigration cases including green card applications, naturalization, business immigration, work visas, deportation defense, applications for asylum & refugee status, and more.

Finding the immigration attorney who will best suit your needs can be a daunting task, but one that can make or break your immigration process. We list a number of factors you should consider when looking for your immigration lawyer in this article.  

If you are considering opening your own immigration case, or need legal advice on a current one, the Law Office of Joseph A Dennis is here to help.  Our team has immigration law experience managing a wide range of issues, including visa applications, securing green cards, citizenship and naturalization processes, deportation hearings, and even asylum seekers, and we will work your case with the professionalism and dedication you deserve.  Contact us today for a free initial consultation!

Look for Quality First

Take some time to consider your options when looking for the best immigration lawyer, rather than hiring the first one you find. A high-quality lawyer who manages your case professionally is far more likely to get you the best result possible, while a bad immigration lawyer can ruin your chances. Take your time to research any New York immigration attorneys you consider to be sure you make the right decision for your case. If they can't convince you that they have the ability to secure your immigration benefits, find someone else.

Look at Referrals

Personal recommendations can be a great place to start.  If you know anyone who has experience with an immigration attorney, ask them who they worked with and how they feel about the job that was done.  Word-of-mouth can be a great way to find recommendations for attorneys.  

If no one you know can give you a quality recommendation, or even if they can and you still want to weigh all your options, the internet is an invaluable resource.  Look around and be sure to search review sites to see what others have to say about their experiences with different attorneys.  You should be able to find a plethora of information to help you narrow your search.

Verify Their Credentials

It's crucial to make sure the potential attorney is the real deal when it comes to your case. Find out how much relevant experience they have and what their credentials are. Any attorney should have this information listed on their website, but other resources exist that you can use to verify their credentials. For example, you can contact the state bar association and search their database.  Pay particular attention to any complaints or malpractice suits that may have been leveled against them.  

How to Choose the Best Immigration Attorney in NY

You can also check with the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA).  They maintain a database of lawyers that practice and teach immigration law throughout the country.  

Interview any Lawyers You Are Considering

As you narrow down your list of potential attorneys you should contact them personally. Set up a brief phone call to decide if they are the right fit for you and your needs. 

When you interview them, be sure to ask about their past cases.  Experience with immigration law and cases similar to yours should be your main point of interest. Take the opportunity to learn what their expertise is and be sure it aligns with the needs of your case. 

Some other attributes you should make note of during this process include:

  • Honesty. They should answer your questions directly without ducking around or avoiding providing answers. Make sure the information they provide you with aligns with what you already know, or that they can provide an explanation for the difference. The attorney should also be up front about their costs and fee structure, you shouldn't face any financial surprises at the end of your case.
  • Dedication and compassion. They should show interest and attention to your case in all it's details.  A lawyer who shows compassion and respect for their clients is much more likely to put in the time and attention to make a real difference in your case. 
  • Professionalism. Pay close attention to their bearing during your meeting. They should be prepared with the necessary paperwork, references, and answers to your questions. If they cannot present themselves professionally you would do well to look elsewhere. 
  • Open and clear communication. The attorney should answer any questions you have clearly and directly, and explain any points that you don't understand in simple terms. If there is a language barrier between the two of you, they should be able and willing to come up with a solution. If they aren't able or willing to communicate with you clearly, you will likely run into issues with your immigration case.

Ask for References

When you meet with a potential attorney be sure to ask for references. An experienced and successful immigration lawyer should be able to provide you with a list of references from clients who were happy with their work on past cases. Check for references and you should be able to move forward with confidence that the lawyer you choose will deliver the results you are hoping for.

Related: Reasons to Hire an Immigration Lawyer

Accessibility

Immigration lawyers, and especially good ones, are busy.  Between consultations, court dates, and client meetings they can quickly fill up their schedules. You will want to be sure that the lawyer you work with has time for you.  If you have trouble reaching the attorney or another worker for the law firm if an urgent situation comes up, you could easily find yourself in a tough spot.

You should also consider the location of their office. Odds are you will need to visit them in person several times throughout your immigration process. You will want your attorney to be located somewhere that is convenient. Make a note of this before making your final decision. Immigration cases can be stressful enough without adding unnecessary problems into the mix. 

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Know Their Fees

Hiring a lawyer is a business transaction like any other.  You will want to know exactly what you are paying for before you commit to anything. Find out if they charge an hourly rate or at a flat rate. If necessary, discuss possible payment plans. Take the time to work out any fees ahead of time and know what services they cover and what they don't. Compare fees between different lawyers to find the one that will fit your budget.

Find a Lawyer You are Comfortable With

You should also look further than their achievements and credentials when hiring an immigration attorney. Even if a lawyer is great on paper, if you do not feel comfortable working with them you may want to pursue a different option.

This could be as simple as personal preference, for example, you may prefer working with a male or female attorney. It is important that you can develop a good working relationship with your lawyer, make sure it is someone you will be comfortable working with throughout the entire process.

Take Notes

Make sure you take detailed notes throughout your immigration process. Having all of the relevant information readily accessible will make it easier to make your final decision. If you are going to meet with several attorneys this is even more important, as it can quickly become difficult to remember who said what. Look back over your notes when you sit down to make your decision and weigh your options fully. 

How to Choose the Best Immigration lawyer in NY

You may want to consider bringing a close friend or family member with you during meetings with your attorney. This can free you up to pay attention to what you discuss and focus on addressing your questions and concerns while they take notes that you can reference later. 

Make Your Final Decision

The last step in the process is choosing your attorney. Once you have done so, develop a strong working relationship with them. If you find yourself in need of an immigration attorney in the future it can be beneficial to know one who understands you and your immigration history. 

Look back over the notes you collected during your research process and review all the information you have. Choose a lawyer who will be accessible to you, has a convenient office location, displays professionalism and compassion for your situation. Remember that they should be able to communicate clearly with you regarding your case and any issues you may face. 

Once you have taken your time to research your options, carefully thought them through, and made your decision you will feel confident that the lawyer you have chosen will be the right one for you and your case.

If You are Looking for the Best Immigration Lawyer in NY Contact Jason A Dennis

It's important to have an experienced and reliable immigration lawyer to help you through any legal matters that may come up.  Immigration law is among the most complex in the United States and having legal representation with extensive experience in immigration law can help you avoid common mistakes as well as navigate complex legal issues that may threaten your legal status.

As one of the fastest-growing immigration law firms in the country, the Law Office of Joseph A Dennis has the combination of knowledge and experience to help you through any immigration matter you might face.

We dedicate ourselves to the values of integrity, professionalism, and respect our clients deserve while providing legal counsel at the highest level of professionalism. Our top-rated immigration lawyers are ready and willing to help you prepare for your green card interview, prepare a defense for removal proceedings before an immigration judge, file applications to secure your legal immigration status, or navigate any other immigration services. Call today or schedule an appointment online for a free case consultation to find out what legal services we can offer you.

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