Why should I have a lawyer?

Immigration law is very complex and can seem unfair if your immigration case is denied. A wrong answer on a form or not including the right documents may cause your application to be denied. When you hire a lawyer, you are buying peace of mind. You are hiring someone to help you who is trained in immigration law and knows how the immigration system works. They can help you avoid problems and put your best case forward. You have someone on your side to explain the process and help you.

To be on this website, AILA members must meet certain requirements. Don’t be fooled by an immigration consultant or someone who claims they are as good as a lawyer. They don’t meet these tough requirements:

All AILA members listed on AILALawyer.com:

  • Are licensed lawyers in good standing in at least one state, 
  • Have been an AILA member for two years or more, 
  • Have professional liability insurance coverage of $100,000 or more, and 
  • Took at least nine hours of classes in the last year to stay up to date on immigration law.

Ask your consultant or lawyer if they meet these standards. Don’t you deserve that peace of mind?

Protect yourself, your family, and your business!

Only a U.S.-licensed lawyer or accredited representative is authorized and qualified to help with your immigration case. Unlike consultants, lawyers get education and training and must get a special license before they can represent clients. Lawyers must act honestly and do their job well. If they don’t, you can file a complaint against them.

When an immigration consultant promises to help, they can make mistakes that you may not be able to fix, and there may be no place to complain.

By promising too much and knowing too little, immigration consultants can damage your chances. Many are scam artists, taking your money and never having to answer for the results.

It is against the law for “public notaries” to provide immigration advice—even just filling out forms is something that only a licensed, properly trained lawyer or accredited representative should do.

An accredited representative works for a nonprofit community or religious group and has the skill and training to help people with their immigration cases. Accredited Representatives must be supervised by a licensed lawyer. You can find a list of accredited representatives at the U.S. Department of Justice.

Be careful who you listen to

  • Be smart! If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.
  • Don’t believe anyone who tells you about a secret law or claims to have special connections or an “in” with a government agency.
  • Never sign an application that has false information and never sign blank forms. If you must sign a blank form, make sure you get a copy of the completed form and check that it’s correct before it is submitted.
  • Always get proof your form was submitted. You should get a receipt or a copy of one when anything is turned in for your case.
  • Ask for a written contract that explains all the fees and expenses and make sure you receive a receipt, especially if you pay cash. If something in the contract has to change, get a written explanation.
  • Don’t let anyone find you a sponsor or spouse to get you a green card: It’s illegal and can make it so you can never get a green card.