When do you really need an immigration lawyer?
Just because you or your loved one are going through an immigration process, that doesn’t mean that you’re in dire need of an immigration lawyer.
If you’ve got a straightforward case with no criminal record, health issues or any other issues that may affect your eligibility for immigration benefits, you’re likely good to go on your own.
That is, of course, unless you’d like someone to save you time and money, as well as provide you with a stress-free immigration process nevertheless. We get that convenience is important, as it allows you to devote your time and effort to other, more-pressing or enjoyable activities.
So, on what occasions would it be worth investing in a really good immigration lawyer, then? Let’s take a look at a few that we’ve gathered from the prior and current experiences of immigrants:
You’re uncertain about eligibility
Whether you’re applying for a Green Card, government assistance, asylum, waiver or any other immigration benefit, you’ll need to meet certain criteria. These will differ depending on your needs.
If you’re looking to get a Green Card that is based on employment, you may need to go through labor certification and fill out a petition with the U.S Citizenship and Immigration Services. Your employer will also need to sponsor you.
For example, you might’ve been offered a once-in-a-lifetime employment opportunity in the U.S, which means the stakes are high. Unfortunately, oftentimes your employer is not interested in assisting you with the immigration process.
In instances like these, consulting an immigration lawyer can help you with choosing the right Green Card for you, checking whether you’re qualified for it and completing all the necessary steps to increase your chances of successfully finalizing your immigration process.
You might also be interested in bringing your immediate relatives and loved ones into the immigration process.
As the family-based immigration process can also result in an application denial, which might prevent you from reuniting with your family for years to come, you might want to consult a legal expert to make sure your application isn’t denied due to incomplete documentation or errors.
Ultimately, hiring an immigration attorney to tell you whether you’re eligible for a certain immigration benefit and which one you should opt for can end up saving you a lot of money. Even if your attorney tells you you’re ineligible, that’s going to end up saving you a lot of resources.
The paperwork load is overwhelming and confusing
One of the top issues immigrants face when they come to the U.S is the inability to communicate in English, as it is not their native language.
If this is an issue that you have, you’re likely going to be confused by all the application forms you’re supposed to fill out, considering that they don’t come with any translations (or directions!).
Hiring a translator to have them on-site when filling out these forms may not be as cost-effective as hiring an immigration lawyer, as the lawyer will also be able to answer all the questions you have about the legal requirements tied to the immigration process and give you actual legal advice.
Not to mention, it’s really easy to make seemingly insignificant mistakes that might have serious consequences.
For example, you might end up sending documentation to the wrong address, filling out a wrong form, paying the wrong fee or forgetting to pay one at all, misunderstanding the question, providing a troublesome answer and so much more.
In fact, did you know that many deportations result from immigrants filling out applications they shouldn’t have been filing in the first place?
If you want to avoid being drawn into this long and complex process just to have your application denied because it’s missing a crucial element, check out here for some help and a sense of security along the way.
Things get lost and they get delayed whenever bureaucracy is involved.
A simple thing such as moving to another state, after applying in a different one, might result in a complication due to not having your documentation transferred accordingly.
Furthermore, immigration authorities are notorious for being slow and hard to reach, so you might want to have a seasoned immigration attorney by your side, handling these calls.
They could save you the trouble and the waiting time, considering that they usually know the ins and outs of these bodies and frequently have connections within them too.
Sometimes, reputation, influence and status encourage people to work more efficiently and responsibly, so it’s good to have a person of power in your corner.
You’re unsure how to handle grey areas and emergencies all by yourself.
Immigrants are usually not guaranteed legal counsel in the U.S, meaning that in case of an emergency immigration matter, you’re either left to deal with it on your own or to search for an attorney that can help you.
An example of an emergency matter would be if you’ve received a notification that removal or deportation proceedings have been started against you. In the event of this, you have the right to a lawyer and a chance to be heard.
Authorities will often try to get you to sign something quickly without consulting a professional, but if you truly believe you have the grounds to stay in the U.S, you should insist on legal representation.
An immigration attorney can help you gather evidence, present your defense, bring witnesses to testify, ask you the right questions and handle your appeal, if necessary.