The 3 Things Your Team Should Know About Immigration Law, But Doesn’t
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Transcript of Video 3
Woohoo! You made it to part 3, and we are going to get into some substantive law today. We started off talking about the acronyms, which are really important to know. Then we talked about the overview of the federal system. And now, let’s get our hands on some of the work.
The news and movies have made things sound so different than they actually are when it comes to immigration. You often hear people say, “I want my husband to get citizenship,” or that they want someone to “get citizenship.” But it’s a misconception- citizenship is not the first step. In the majority of cases, a person has to first obtain a “green card,” which is also called Lawful permanent residence, or “permanent residence,” or “residency.” They are all ways to express the same idea.
There are many different ways to obtain a “green card,” too many to go into here. So I want to start off with two of the main ways: Adjustment of Status and Consular Processing.
In any immigration law firm that does family-based immigration, you will come across both of these processes.
It is important that you understand that the goal of each of these processes is to obtain lawful permanent residence. If all goes well, at the end of each of the processes, the client will get his or her “green card.” That is the goal.
It’s important to remember this because when clients hear these phrases, they often get confused. They will ask, “Okay so we apply for adjustment of status and then when do we apply for my green card?” That is why, regardless of what type of case you are doing in the firm, whether it’s adjustment of status or a U visa, you need to know what benefit the client will receive when the case is completed. This is what the clients need to know, so that’s what you need to be able to tell them. Lawyers often like to use the proper, technical terms to clients, and there are many times where clients feel embarrassed or don’t want to ask what it means. And that’s when they ask the legal assistant assigned to the case. And that’s when you have to be able to articulate the benefits to them.
Lawyers focus on the processes, but clients are focused on the outcomes. In other words- lawyers focus on the how while clients focus on the what. It’s important that you are able to articulate what it is the client will achieve or obtain as a result of the process.
So let’s talk a little bit about Adjustment of Status and Consular Processing. If approved, they both have the same outcome: lawful permanent residence. However, the processes are 100% different.
Adjustment of Status is completed inside the United States.
Consular Processing is completed outside of the United States.
Those are the major differences.
And it’s a complicated difference, too, because consular processing is a process that you sometimes start inside the United States, yet you have to leave the United States to finish it.
Understandably, clients have a lot of questions about this process.
For example, Why would someone inside the United States leave to get a green card if they are already in the US? Why wouldn’t they just apply for Adjustment of Status?
There are a lot of legal reasons why it’s this way. And the reasons are complicated, but extremely important. The determination of whether a client can/ should consular process outside of the United States v. adjust status inside the United States is something that can only be made by an attorney.
However, as a legal assistant, it is important to understand the “why.” Clients will ask over and over, “Why can’t I just get your green card here if I’m already here?” You need to be able to know the basics to be able to tell them why, and without having to ask the lawyer over and over and over.
Also, when someone is applying for Adjustment of Status, s/he gets to apply for a work permit as well. A person who is applying for Consular Processing doesn’t. There are no benefits until the case is done.
Other questions you will receive are, “When do I get my work permit?” “When will I get my green card?” “Can I travel outside of the united states?” “Can I travel domestically within the united states?’
And so much more…. So, so, so much more.
While it feels overwhelming and like there is a lot to learn, these are actually the basics, and they can be learned very quickly.
That is why I am excited to announce the launch of:
Introduction to Immigration Law- An Overview for New Lawyers and Legal Assistants.
What we have discussed here barely scratches the surface! All of the questions that I mentioned to you here will be answered, and more!
Here’s what the Introduction to Immigration Law- An Overview for New Lawyers and Legal Assistants includes….
This is a true training course, and you will have lifetime access! It is a course you can use over and over for your staff as you grow and hire your team of legal assistants and new attorneys.
There are 11 units that cover topics such as:
• Family-Based Petitions
• Adjustment of Status
• Consular Processing
• Humanitarian Immigration Options such as VAWA, U Visa, and T Visa
• Introduction to Removal Proceedings
• Defenses against Removal
Each unit has quizzes to test your knowledge on each and every major concept that we cover. This is key to make sure that information is retained and that your team can understand difficult concepts, such as how to read the visa bulletin. We teach how to do things such as schedule an infopass appointment and call the EOIR 800#, that way you’ll never have to answer these questions again from your staff!
What is great about this course is that it is accompanied by the e-book of Introduction to Immigration Law: An Overview for New Lawyers and Legal Assistants, so that way the book can be used as a reference guide in addition to the course. This can be the “go to” for your law firm.
I consult with lawyers throughout the country and the biggest problem that I see in firms is that the lawyers are the center of everything. They are like the sun in the middle of the solar system, and the whole firm will fall apart without them. Their assistants come to them with every single question, even with questions that they could find the answers to on their own. So many lawyers can hardly complete work during the work day because of all of the interruptions.
So we are stuck in this neverending cycle where we don’t have enough time to train staff, but at the same time since we can’t give them training, then we have to live with months (or years!) of interruptions because they have endless questions. Let’s break that cycle!
And not only that, I want to help you empower your team and your office with great information that is basic, boiled down, and to the point. No fluff. No esoteric ideas or overexplanation of the law- just simple, bite-sized pieces that you and your team can digest and apply immediately.
What we have done in the last 3 days together is not even a sampling of what is to come. The lawyers who have seen this program and used it say that the only thing that they wish is that it had been available to them sooner!
So join us today!!
Here’s how you join:
Join us today!! This course registration will close on April 7 at midnight, so don’t miss your chance to enroll!
Here’s what you’ll get with this course:
• Introduction to Immigration: An Overview for New Lawyers and Legal Assistants e-book
• Ignite Your Practice with the T Visa: A Guide for Immigration Lawyers e-book
• My I-360 with AOS bundle, which is everything you need to put together a VAWA case. This is my main case type and I provide legal arguments, the questionnaires that you need to streamline the process of the forms and the declaration, and more!
• 2 Q&A calls with me where you can ask me anything and can invite your team to jump on with questions (to save you time and help you make more money and be more efficient)
If you have questions about if this is right for you, feel free to jump on a call with me and we can schedule a 15-minute session to chat.
I can’t wait for you to have this incredible tool as a part of the training process in your office! That way you can get more done with a well-trained team!