If you are considering immigrating to the United States then typically the first step is hiring a lawyer. The immigration process can be complicated and having someone by your side that knows the laws can help you immensely.
You might be nervous when meeting with an immigration lawyer. Immigrating to the U.S is a big deal! Whether you have a problem that you specifically need the help of a lawyer to solve, or you simply want guidance through the process, hiring a lawyer is never a bad idea.
Before you hire an immigration lawyer, there are a few key questions to ask in order to ensure that they are the right lawyer to be hiring. This will help you to know how to prepare for your future, ensure they are the right lawyer for you and know what to expect overall.
1. Are You a Member of The AILA?
AILA stands for the American Immigration Lawyers Association. All lawyers can legally practice immigration law, but being a member of the AILA ensures you that your lawyer specializes in it.
2. What Experience Do You Have?
The most important question you should be asking your lawyer is what kind of experience they have. This should be specified to the type of immigration law that you need.
Find out if they have worked on similar cases if they understand immigration bonds and the length in which they have been practicing immigration law. Are they experienced in court proceedings?
Whether it is marriage-based immigration, asylum-seeking, or other forms of immigration. Your lawyer should have experience in that area.
3. How Can You Help Me?
Although simply asking a lawyer how they can help you is broad, but it is essential that they understand this. You are fully involved in your process of immigration, so you will also play a part in the outcome. Despite this, your lawyer will be the one to bring all of your information together and present it cohesively.
Lawyers should be able to answer any question without hesitation in order to represent you. When searching for a lawyer you need someone who can reiterate your story to a judge properly, so them understanding how to help you is essential.
Overall, all you should need to do is follow the instructions of your lawyer, and they should be able to help you prevent a strong case.
4. What Timeframe Should I Expect?
Immigration is typically a lengthy process that requires a lot of work on your behalf. This means that your lawyer should be able to prepare you for the timeline. Immigration means you will be going through complete life changes.
You will also need to ask what to expect after the initial steps. Typically an immigration case takes a long period of time, and you may need to jump through several hoops before awaiting a judgment. Understanding the timeline of your immigration will allow you to make preparations financially, and also emotionally.
5. How Does My Case Compare to Others You Have Seen
Before you begin the entire immigration process, you will want to understand what has happened in cases in the past that are similar to yours.
You may be nervous while preparing for trial, and your lawyer should provide you with facts. Referencing previous cases they have worked on that are similar to yours can be helpful. Your entire future will be decided by this hearing, so being as prepared as possible is essential.
Although you want a lawyer who can comfort you, you do not need to be told that things will go smoothly if they might not. They should be able to prepare you for what can go wrong, and explain how you plan to mitigate those issues. Overall, learning from previous cases they have seen will help to make your case even stronger.
6. How Will I Be Charged?
Anytime you sign on with a lawyer you need to be prepared for the fees. Lawyer rates are not cheap, and although it will depend on where you live, most lawyers charge a premium. Prepare to pay hourly, or a flat rate for a series of activities related to your immigration case.
Because there is a sliding scale when it comes to lawyers, it can be tempting to go for a cheap rate. In the end, it is better to go with a well educated and gifted lawyer who knows what they are doing, rather than a cheap lawyer that sacrifices quality.
If you are worried about paying for their services you can ask about payment plans. Often lawyers allow you to pay in installments, hourly, or per service.
7. Do You Have References?
The outcome of an immigration case is not something to take lightly. This is why it is essential that you hire a lawyer who has good references from people with similar cases to yours. Any reputable lawyer should be able to offer you references before you use their services, so feel free to ask before hiring.
One good thing to keep in mind though is that a lawyer will always provide you with their best references. Another method of finding references is to look online. This might be found somewhere as simple as Yelp, or Google. But you should also look on the website of the Better Business Bureau to see if they have any complaints against them.
Are You Ready to Hire a Lawyer to Help You With Your United States Immigration?
If you began reading this article then you may already be considering immigrating to the United States. Whether you are ready to do so or looking for a bit more guidance, hiring a U.S immigration attorney is a wonderful choice.
At Tower Immigration, we have licensed attorneys that can help you achieve your goals of immigrating to the United States. Contact us today, and hopefully, we can help you achieve your dreams of becoming an immigrant of the United States of America.