The US immigration process can be highly taxing and difficult. When you are navigating through the thorny process, you will want the best lawyer to guide you through all steps.
The best way to kick off the immigration process for you and your loved ones is to have exploratory consultations with a number of immigration attorneys. But what guidelines should you keep in mind as you go through the process of interviewing immigration attorneys?
Here check out these seven pointers to take into account as you evaluate which attorney is the best one to help you reach your goal of immigrating to the United States:
1. Don’t Look for a Bargain
Don’t just blindly choose an immigration lawyer. There are a lot of terrible and mediocre immigration attorneys out there. Some may be juggling too many cases at once, making it tough for them to dedicate quality time to your case. Others don’t have enough experience in specific areas of immigration law. Still others are only looking to make as much money as possible from their current portfolio of clients.
So, do your research and truly look into the reputations of all the lawyers you evaluate. Don’t be afraid to splurge a few thousand dollars on a quality lawyer. It’s not worth it to risk wasting months of a delayed or rejected process because you want to save money.
2. Get a Trusted Referral
Tap into your network of friends and acquaintances to find other individuals who have dealt with immigration attorneys in order to acquire a green card residency visa. Word-of-mouth referrals are the best to consider as you can learn firsthand about the kind of experience the visa recipient had when working with the immigration attorney.
3. Ask for References
Once you are referred to a good lawyer, arrange to have a consultation wherein the lawyer gives his or her best recommendations for visa options. Be sure to ask for references. A good immigration lawyer should suffer from no shortage of happy former clients ready and willing to recommend the law firm’s services.
4. Negotiate Fees
Immigration law firms typically charge by the hour. However, some law firms charge fixed fees for the standard preparing and filing of your case. Opt always to pay a fixed fee for a law firm’s services or else require that they give you an estimation of how much time it will take to file your case so that you know how much their services will cost you in terms of time and money.
5. Upload the Process to the Cloud
Adopt a cloud file storage for the documents you need to submit with your case file. Sign the documents electronically and employ a project management system to manage the process such as Asana and Google Drive.
Asana can be especially helpful — your attorney will assign you tasks to complete relevant to your application to become a US immigrant. When you use the online ticketing software, you can be 100 percent sure you’re not dragging out the process yourself.
6. Hire a Lawyer Who Speaks Your Language
Pick a lawyer who speaks your language fluently. This greatly streamlines the process and ensures that you and your lawyer are always on the same page in terms of understood legal nuances. The lawyer would also be able to make sure that the certified translations of your documents from your native tongue to English are accurate.
7. Build a Relationship with your Attorney
Your visa is the first step to being able to legally live in the United States. It is also the first, but, more likely, not the last time you’re dealing with USCIS office.
If all goes well, you will soon be applying for U.S. citizenship. This is why it is important that you build a good relationship with your attorney, so that he or she can serve you to the best of his or her ability in the future when you are ready to take that step forward.
Filing for your legal papers to live in the United States can be a tough process. But having the right professional by your side makes all the difference. Taking into account these seven tips should help you find a quality attorney to expertly handle your case.
Image credit: Olegdudko