1. To Not Become A Victim of Fraud.
Immigrants may be tempted to hire an immigration consultant or “notario” to assist them with the green card process because notarios may offer their services at a reduced price. That price, however, usually comes at a large cost. Notarios often use false advertising to market themselves as qualified, when really they may have little to no immigration expertise or experience. As a result, an immigrant will hire a notario to get him a green card, but the notario may instead damage his case or, even worse, permanently bar the immigrant from ever becoming a resident. Some notarios will charge an immigrant to obtain her green card, while knowing that the immigrant is actually not eligible for a green card. These problems have become so severe that the American Bar Association has developed an initiative to combat notario fraud, which is explained in both English and Spanish on the ABA’s webpage.
2. The Details Matter.
Immigration law is full of tricky details, and if these details are overlooked, your case may be denied. For example, certain entries and departures to and from the United States, whether illegal or not, may have a serious effect on your case and what your options are. Estimating dates and other items of information also causes problems. Another example is when an immigrant does not fully understand how the process works. For example, an immigrant may think that an approved I-130 Petition gives him some form of immigration status, while it does nothing of the sort. Rather, an approved I-130 Petition provides the basis for an application for permanent resident status; it alone does not provide any legal status in the United States. An immigration lawyer is trained to spot these details, and knows which ones are important. Hiring an immigration attorney ensures that these details are taken care of, and that no problems arise from something that is overlooked.
3. Peace of Mind.
Oftentimes immigrants may fear submitting forms to immigration because of something they did in their past, whether it was working without employment authorization or committing a crime or fraud. An immigration lawyer can advise those persons whether they should or should not apply for a green card depending on their particular circumstances. For example, persons who worked without employment authorization can still adjust their status to that of a lawful permanent resident if they are married to a United States citizen. Moreover, certain crimes and types of fraud can be waived by the Government, and these immigrants can still obtain their green cards.
4. Relationships with Government Immigration Officers and Attorneys.
Reputable immigration attorneys maintain good professional relationships with every Government immigration officer or attorney they encounter. These relationships, which are built on trust and professionalism, encourage agreements between immigration attorneys and Government immigration attorneys. Moreover, immigration officers are more inclined to consider proposals made in an immigrant’s favor if the officer trusts the immigrant’s immigration attorney. As a result, hiring an immigration attorney is more likely to produce faster results and avoids unnecessarily complicating your case.
5. For Solving Problems.
As stated earlier, attorneys are trained to spot certain details. Similarly, immigration attorneys are trained and have learned to trouble shoot for potential problems or issues that typically arise during the green card application process. Some of these potential problems or issues may not appear like problems or issues to an untrained eye. An immigration attorney can quickly spot these types of things, and take the proper actions to get the case back on track. Immigration cases are often derailed and stuck in Government limbo, or even denied, if these problems are not addressed and resolved in a timely proper manner.
All in all, navigating the immigration process by yourself is a risky bet, one that could result in the complicating or even the denying of your case. Hiring an immigration attorney is more likely to lead to positive results, such as a green card.