5 Things to Consider When Vetting Immigration Lawyers
Immigration laws in the United States are very specific. Most general lawyers lack experience with immigration law, so if you need that specific service, you must find a specialist. But not all immigration lawyers are the same. If you are in an area with several immigration lawyers, how can you narrow things down? These five tips will help you pick the best immigration lawyer for you.
The best immigration lawyers have experience with cases just like yours. Immigration law is a big field; some immigration lawyers may specialize in asylum, family law, or another section that does not apply to your situation. Choose an experienced immigration lawyer that fits your situation. Word of mouth can also help you find a lawyer who specializes in cases just like yours. Being multilingual is a huge bonus!
Along with experience, you also want an immigration lawyer to be available whenever you need them. It is usually best to hire an immigration lawyer in your area for multiple reasons; different places have slightly different laws, and you want to contact them easily in case something goes wrong. That said, monitor how long it takes them to get back to you about scheduling a consultation; it can be a good indicator of whether they will be ready to help you when you need it the most.
Money will inevitably be a factor when vetting immigration lawyers. Ask about all the fees you can before deciding. Some lawyers charge hourly rates and others charge flat rates. There may also be extra fees depending on what forms your case requires. The more transparent lawyers are about these fees, the better.
No matter how much a good lawyer costs, remember that investing in the wrong lawyer could cost much, much more. Always check with two or more lawyers before deciding.
The law can be a long, messy process. But if you need a legal document by a certain date, time may be of the essence. Finding an immigration lawyer as soon as possible will save you some time, but it cannot hurt to ask how long it will take the immigration lawyer to process your case. Anyone who says it will be “easy” is probably not experienced enough to handle your needs; ask for a timetable.
People seeking an immigration lawyer may be relieved to know that the American legal system has ways of punishing bad actors. Check that your attorney is still qualified to practice before scheduling a consultation. And if someone you know had a good or bad experience with a given lawyer, take that to heart.
Finding a good immigration lawyer depends on several pieces of information. If you are in an area with lots of immigration lawyers, it may be hard to choose. Experience and location should be your two biggest deciding factors, but consider reputation, cost, and the time it takes them to get back to you as well. Do not try to fight through immigration law yourself; contact an experienced immigration lawyer near you today!