If you are thinking of applying for immigration by yourself, it’s just a huge risk. If you make a mistake, USCIS, a governing body for these applications, has zero tolerance for any mistake. So once it gets denied, it’s denied. You may save a little bit of money, but you’re risking not being able to work in the United States. And that’s being penny wise, pound foolish.
There’s no one specific mistake that people make, because there are so many different areas of immigration law, from H1Bs to family-based, like somebody getting married to a US citizen.
The fundamental mistake, is they haven’t hired an immigration attorney.
And I see so many times when they try not to do it on their own and come to me when it’s too late. It’s already been rejected.
Another big mistake is just believing things on the internet.
Is it really worth a few thousand dollars in savings to take that chance that you might not get to live here and get deported?
So how can an immigration lawyer help?
There are many things, but generally, the thread connecting everybody in immigration law is to try to bring somebody who’s not a US citizen into the United States.
We in the Law Offices of Sung-Ho Hwang help:
- people by obtaining visas, green cards, or citizenship.
- corporations recruit people internationally and allow them to work in the United States. So there are lots of things.
You need to do some research and look at who you feel comfortable with in terms of somebody representing you.
The issue with immigration politics
The biggest surprise is that we still haven’t come up with comprehensive immigration reforms. So we’ve had this problem for a long, long time.
Since I’ve been practicing the law, and 15 years ago, we were close to having it with George W. Bush. It’s just something that I don’t know why we don’t have the political will to make these changes. That’s the biggest surprise.
With the new administration opening things up, I think it’s going in the right direction though I don’t think it’s going enough in the right direction. But unfortunately, the Senate still has a filibuster. So even though the Democrats control, they can stop any comprehensive immigration bill. And they’ve pretty much said that nothing is going to go through.
Are you a young Asian American considering a career in law?
When I started the law practice, I was basically the only Asian attorney. And when I started my law practice, I was a litigator. I mainly did trial work. So I would just show up in Court as the only Asian person there. And you have state Marshalls or clerks there asking me if I’m the interpreter. So that’s what I was facing. But I think it’s started to change now. You see that in areas like Connecticut, where Asians are not the primary group.
So it’s a little bit of an uphill battle. I think you have to work harder. And I think Asians have that work ethic to just work harder. So there’s a great opportunity. And now, a lot of my clientele are Asian. They feel more comfortable with somebody who speaks the same language.
There’re lots of opportunities as an Asian.
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