When Should You Hire an Immigration Lawyer?
In the realm of law, there are numerous types of practice areas. Some lawyers focus their expertise on personal injury, while others make criminal defense their specialty. What you might not realize is that there are also law firms dedicated to helping immigrants who come to the United States in hopes of a better life.
Although immigrants make up around 13% of the entire U.S. population, that doesn't mean it's easy to obtain permission to live here. With so much recent emphasis on our country's immigration processes, many families may become overwhelmed with the prospect of coming to the U.S. -- even when it's done legally. In these situations, having help from experienced immigration lawyers can be of great comfort. Let's take a closer look at some of the scenarios wherein it might be wise to contact an immigration attorney.
When you have questions about your application or the visa process
Unfortunately, the visa application process is anything but straightforward. It's all too easy to make a simple mistake -- and that simple mistake could completely derail your hopes of being granted entry to the United States. However, you don't have to navigate this process alone. If you have a question about something you need to include in your application or about the process for applying for a particular type of visa, your immigration lawyer can be a highly valuable source of information. Every situation is different and with so many types of visa applications to choose from, you may understandably feel lost and confused. Immigration attorneys can help to guide you through the entire process and ensure that you're on the right path.
When you've received a deportation notification
Receiving a Notice To Appear (NTA) document can be extremely scary for someone who has already immigrated to this country. Essentially, it means that the federal government intends to begin removal proceedings against you. In many cases, these actions may be taken in error. Whether that's true or not, you still have a duty to appear in court. When you do, you cannot afford to give up your right to legal representation. Immigration attorneys have far more experience with this type of court system than you do; trying to go it alone is not likely to end favorably. If you've received this type of document, you should contact a well-regarded immigration lawyer immediately to discuss the next steps to take.
When your visa application has been denied
No one wants to think about having their visa or citizenship application denied. But the truth is that it happens fairly frequently. If and when this happens to you, you may not be completely out of options. In many cases, you may be able to reapply with help from your lawyer. It's possible that your denial is merely a result of missing paperwork or a misunderstanding; if so, your attorney may be able to rectify the situation -- particularly if the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) agency doesn't issue a direct denial.
When your petition has been delayed
Another reason many people choose to hire an immigration lawyer is if their petition to receive a green card has been significantly delayed. With so many people applying for permission to come to or stay in the U.S., it's no surprise that USCIS has a huge backlog to work through. This typically results in massive delays for those who apply. While your lawyer may not be able to exponentially speed up the process, they can gain access to certain information thanks to lawyer-only phone lines provided by USCIS. Your attorney may be able to obtain answers that you won't receive as a result.
The reality is that any issue that involves your immigration status (even indirectly) should be handled by an immigration attorney. Whether you've been charged with a crime or intend to apply for an investment visa, your lawyer can help to ensure you're protected and that no mistakes are made. To learn more, please contact our offices today.