The Vaisman P.C.
11 Broadway, Suite 615
New York, NY 10004
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Irene Vaisman, Esq.
Successful Results* Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome.
I was retained by a national of Uzbekistan to represent her in asylum proceedings. The asylum office referred her case to the Immigration Court for inconsistencies. In Immigration Court we asked for asylum based on her nationality (Tajik living in Uzbekistan) and membership in a particular social group and political opinion as my client was technically a whistle blower when she brought up the issue of hidden anthrax deposits on school grounds. She was persecuted on account of all of these things. The judge determined that she consistently and credibly testified and has granted her request for asylum!
A few years ago I was retained by a US national whose wife was a national of Grenada. After years of being in this country without status, she has listened to a wrongful advice of a notario and left the United States. When she approached the American Consulate for a visa, she was turned down for unlawful presence in the US. She felt desperate as her husband and three children were left back here. Unfortunately, she also misrepresented herself at the Consulate as well. In the mean time, her abusive ex-husband learned she was not in the country and filed for custody of the 2 children that were biologically his. Her current husband was unable to do much in Family Court. I filed for an emergency request for humanitarian parole to let her in the country to appear in the custody case. The Family Court judge actually waited until the documents were submitted and a decision was made (there was overwhelming evidence of abuse so really it was in everyone’s best interests that this person does not obtain custody). Immigration reviewed my request for parole and agreed. In fact, they felt that the circumstances were so compelling; I received a personal call from the adjudicating officer to discuss the case. After my client entered the country on parole, we submitted documents for a fraud waiver as my client misrepresented herself a few times in the Consulate. We waited a long time, but in the end, the waiver was approved. I used the parole entry for adjustment of status and my client’s green card was approved! The case lasted for about three years and was just resolved. The family was overwhelmed with joy as what started as a completely disastrous and desperate situation turned out into a green card.
I was retained by a national of Azerbaijan to help her with her asylum interview. When she came to me, she indicated that her case was already done and filed by a different lawyer and she just wanted help with preparing for the interview and she wanted me to accompany her to that interview. After I reviewed her case, I realized that unfortunately there were too many mistakes made and the case was not adequately presented. Her case involved political opinion and fear of future persecution based on her political involvement and activities. My client’s interview was in a very short time! I had to devote a lot of time into revising her case, providing additional resources and research material to the asylum office. I put a lot of time in preparing my client for the interview. The asylum officer understood her claim and she was granted asylum in this country! This happened right before her birthday and the winter holidays, she was crying when she hugged me and told me that this was the best present she has ever received!
I was retained by a national of Jamaica. He came to the USA using someone else.s passport and green card stamp in the 1980s. He also had a few arrests, no convictions, though. In the early 1990s he met his future spouse, but they did not get married and for about 17 years they lived together as a family and he raised her daughter, who had a serious physical disability. Originally when he and his wife came to me, they wanted to file a stateside I-601A waiver. However, I explained that since he fraudulently entered the country, it was not the right choice for him as the stateside waiver was only meant to forgive unlawful presence and not fraud. I offered to take a very difficult, but honest route. Since he continued to have the passport that he used to enter the country, we filed his adjustment of status packet along with a regular I-601 fraud waiver. This waiver, if approved, not only would forgive the fraud, but also the unlawful presence. The hardship was to the US citizen spouse and step-daughter. It was a very difficult case for many reasons. The fact that he was arrested (drug related arrests) a few times did not help his case. But through hard work and the correct explanation, I was able to accurately portray the extreme hardship to this family and CIS agreed with me. They granted the waiver and subsequently the green card!
I was retained by a national of Antigua and Barbuda. Through the initial consultation, it was discussed that he has been in this country many years ago and he .received a letter from immigration telling him to leave.. The gentleman came on a lawfully issued tourist visa and has never been arrested so on its face, it seemed as a straight forward case at first. However, the previous history was giving me trouble. Therefore, I offered to first pull his entire file and only then if it would come back clean, file his adjustment of status packet. After the entire file was returned from CIS, I learned that the gentleman was placed in deportation proceedings many years ago. Without even knowing this, he left the country when he received that letter telling him to leave and the immigration judge ended up simply administratively closing the file (meaning it remained open, just not on the active calendar). Many of my colleagues advised me to simply file the adjustment packet as it was such an old order from the early 1980s, but it did not sit right with me. I filed an I-130, immigrant visa application, from his spouse and after it was approved, I filed a motion to place the case back on the active judicial calendar. A new judge without any questions simply terminated the old deportation case and then we safely and properly filed his adjustment of status application. The case was subsequently approved by CIS and he is now a green card holder. The clients were grateful and agreed with me that sometimes it is much better to take two steps back and then jump forward successfully! I was happy that they trusted my knowledge, experience and judgment and bore with me as even though it took longer, but we correctly got to the desired place and they did not lose any money nor was the case rejected for improper jurisdiction.
I was retained by a national of Albania after USCIS denied his student visa reinstatement. After hearing the story, I realized that in front of me was a very bright and educated young man with a very bright future ahead of him and it seemed that he has almost completed his entire undergraduate education mistakenly thinking that his documents were in order and the designated school official just simply forgot about him. I filed a motion to reopen the reinstatement denial showing the circumstances of falling out of status. There really was proof that it was not my client.s fault and he did all he thought was right and all that he could to properly maintain status. But it simply seemed that the designated school official just forgot about him and did not complete her job properly. Another thing I had to show was the financial ability to pay for school as that was the second reason for the denial. Since this gentleman was so accomplished, he was more than able to show financial support (however since the first reinstatement request was completed by the designated school official who made the mess in the first place, she simply was unable to properly explain the financial situation to CIS). Moreover, my client was almost done with his education! He only had one semester left and all of the previous semesters were properly and fully paid. Immigration agreed with me and the reopened the case and his student visa was reinstated!
I was retained by a national of Guyana. She came to this country when she was young and she entered through Canada without inspection. She has been married to her husband for more than 10 years and they have a child who has diagnosed learning disabilities. We filed an I-130 immigrant visa petition and it was approved after an interview. Thereafter, I filed a request for a stateside I-601A waiver. CIS agreed with me that this family would suffer extreme hardship should they be separated. Although my client was a stay at home mom and wife, her contribution to the family unit was enormous considering the special needs of their son and the elderly age of her husband.s mother, whom she also helped to take care of. All medical conditions and disabilities were well diagnosed and documented by the appropriate doctors. As a result, the waiver was approved. My client went back to Guyana for her consular interview and successfully came back with her immigrant visa. Her green card came in the mail a few weeks after!
I was retained by a national of Albania. Many years ago, he came to this country as a J-1 exchange student with an annotation in his visa that he was subject to INA 212(e) requirement, meaning he had to have spent 2 years abroad before he could adjust his status to that of a green card holder. Years passed and he lost all of his documents. All he had was a copy of his I-94, arrival/departure record and the visa page with the annotation. My client was happily married and wanted to apply for a waiver thereby waiving his 2 year home residency requirement based of hardship to his wife. However, as he was advised by his previous lawyer, he was unable to do so as the State Department required an on-line application in order to proceed. That application is impossible to complete if you are missing information from the forms, but he lost the forms. When I retained the case, the first thing that I did was to conduct an all comprehensive search for his records. Unfortunately, that did not help. So, I found an exception to the State Department.s rules to the on-line application requirement. We followed the rules and submitted our application to the State Department and USCIS. CIS came back to us with a very lengthy request for evidence, where one of the things they sought was the proof of electronic filing of the application to the State Department. Another thing that they initiated was a marriage fraud investigation as there was a large difference between my client and his spouse. It was a very lengthy response to the government, but my response prompted a thorough search by them and in the end they sent us a letter with their decision indicating that my client in fact did not need this waiver and the annotation in his passport was wrong. Moreover, they could not find any evidence of marriage fraud, as their marriage was in all respects bona fide. After we received this news, we applied for his green card. After almost 20 years in the country my client is now a lawful permanent resident!
I was retained by a national of Russia to help her with her green card process. She has in the past worked with various attorneys who have taken her money and produced no results. The case was complicated in several ways. One was that her proof of entry and passport was lost during a fire. When she tried to obtain her duplicate arrival/departure record, it came back negative. The second complication had to do with her criminal conviction for promoting prostitution, not only a felony, but also a crime involving moral turpitude. First, I started dealing with proof of lawful entry. I had to backtrack a little and do a thorough search of CBP records, who in fact found her entry. Based on these records, I was able to retrieve her duplicate arrival departure record. Secondly, we started dealing with the conviction issue. The conviction, although, not an aggravated felony, is still a crime involving moral turpitude and required a waiver. The waiver was based on extreme hardship to her US citizen spouse. The good thing was that the conviction happened more than 10 year ago and at least that section of inadmissibility did not apply to her. I prepared a thorough waiver application with a mass of supporting documents establishing hardship. The government agreed. After many years of waiting and three unsuccessful applications with other lawyers, she is now a happy lawful permanent resident!
A national of Uzbekistan has retained my services. I was his third attorney and he was already in the middle of massive and long standing removal proceedings. His cases began as an asylum case, but subsequently evolved into a marriage based case. However, Department of Homeland Security accused him of fraudulently omitting information on certain visa documents. We filed his application for a waiver of grounds of inadmissibility based on extreme hardship to his spouse. After reviewing the documents, Office of Chief Counsel agreed to join in with us and ask the Immigration Judge to terminate his removal proceedings. After the removal proceedings were terminated, the case moved to USCIS for full and final adjudication and they agreed on the extreme hardship and granted his waiver and green card!
A few years back I was retained by a national of Russia who was married to a Lawful Permanent Resident and she was already in removal proceedings. Initially, we proceeded with filing the husband.s citizenship application so that later he could file for his wife, but something about him just struck me as odd. It is always ethically difficult when an attorney deals with a married couple and one needs to strike a balance. D uring one on one conversations, I asked the female client whether she was okay and if maybe she wants to share something with me. She would always hide her eyes and say that she is okay. One day, the husband just happened to be in a bad mood and contacted me threatening me and my life. He had one of his mood swings, took it out on his wife and contacted me to curse me about her case, but also happened to threaten me. I knew that my suspicions about him were correct. I asked the female client to put her life story down to writing, instead of talking to me directly. I also referred her to speak to a social worker. It turned out, that she was severally psychologically and physically abused by this man for years. I wrote to the judge describing the situation and we filed her self-petition as an abused spouse. Her petition was approved and the judge terminated her removal proceedings. Subsequently, we filed her application for a green card and she is now a Lawful Permanent Resident!
I was retained by a national of Brazil to help him and obtain the removal of his conditional residency in order to obtain his permanent lawful residency. He came to me after he received a lengthy request for additional evidence from the Immigration Service, which is a common occurrence now days. The problem was that the marriage was short lived and he and his ex-wife were a young couple with scarce resources and they did not have many joint documents together. I had to be very resourceful and creative to come up with joint documents to show that they in fact resided together as husband and wife and in fact did intend to establish a life together when they initially were married, but that the marriage broke down eventually. The Immigration Service looked at all the submitted evidence and approved his application to remove conditions on his residency!
I was retained by a national of Bosnia and Herzegovina to represent her before the Immigration Court in her removal proceedings. She has filed a request for asylum as a member of a particular social group, mainly a lesbian female. Her asylum application was denied at USCIS after a harsh Notice of Intent to Deny and her case was referred to the Immigration Judge. I entered her case right at that moment. My client.s case was very challenging as in my view she was severely traumatized as to what has happened to her in the past. She could not talk about many events from the past. The first thing that I did was to place her into therapy as she drastically required it (in fact, her case has been granted, but she continues to receive therapy on weekly basis). I revised her application and it took a lot of work to get my client to speak and describe what has happened to her. In the end, the government and the Immigration Judge saw how incredible credible she was and her asylum was granted!
I was retained by a national of Jamaica to help her with her immigration problems. My client had entered the country legally with a visa in the early 1990s. Back in those days, many nationals of Jamaica used to mail their passports back home and through a travel agency, a visa renewal application would be made to the American Embassy. In fact, my client used to work in one of these agencies prior to moving to the U.S. So without thinking she was doing anything wrong, she mailed her passport and a visa was issued. She never left the country; she only had one lawful entry. However, when her husband filed for her and she was scheduled for her interview, the Immigration Service thought she was not being truthful and subsequently re-entered the country unlawfully. Hence, the case was denied. A few years after, her husband became abusive. There were various instances of physical abuse and the police was called. When she came to me, I first filed her application as an abused spouse. While these documents were being processed, we obtained proof from Jamaica that she never came there in order to obtain that second visa. We were able to receive a letter from the agency that obtained that second visa for her evidencing that she in fact was not physically in Jamaica. My clients. request to be recognized as an abused spouse was approved and we filed her application for a green card along with new evidence of her lawful entry and that she has in fact never left since that entry. The Immigration Service believed her and she is now a green card holder!
I was retained by a national of Russia when he was placed in removal proceedings. His asylum application was referred to the Immigration Courts as the asylum officer found some discrepancies in his testimony. We waited a couple of years for his merits hearing. His asylum claim was based on persecution based on national origin and ethnicity. As a Georgian male, although a citizen of Russia, he was beaten on several occasions by the Russian nationalists. The police refused to help him. It is important to note that context was very important in this case. These events happened to my client when Russia waged a huge media war against Georgians on its national television and massive deportations of Georgians were taking place. This was also during the time of the Russian/Georgian conflict and war and the conflict with South Ossetia. At his merits hearing, my client credibly testified as to what happened to him in Russia and why he is afraid of going back there. The government attorney tried to ask him tricky questions on his cross examination, but my client was adequately prepared, stayed honest and credible and I submitted an abundance of country conditions material to corroborate his case and the Immigration Judge has granted his request for asylum!
I was retained by a national of Poland to help her file her documents as an abused spouse. She had a sympathetic case, but the facts were complicated in that the actual marital relationship was short-lived. It took a while, but I was able to convince USCIS that she was in fact severely psychologically and mentally abused by her U.S. citizen spouse (the legal standard of proof is higher in these cases as opposed to cases where there is documented physical abuse). Thereafter, I filed her application for lawful permanent residency. My client is now a happy green card holder!
I was retained by a national of Jamaica to represent her and help her obtain her immigration status. A few years ago, after a long and committed relationship she married her boyfriend who was a US citizen. Soon after the marriage, many problems began and the husband started abusing her. She also eventually learned that her husband was still married to another woman making her marriage illegitimate and making her husband a bigamist. She reported him to the police for bigamy and obtained a divorce from him. I applied for a provision under the Violence Against Women Act that allows a person to file for oneself after a bigamous marriage and within two years of the divorce. We proved that she was abused, that the relationship was bona fide, that the marriage was bigamous and that her divorce was connected to the abuse and the bigamy. The Service did not even ask for additional documents, they approved the case rather quickly. Right after the approval, I applied for my clients. lawful permanent residency and she just received her green card in the mail!
A national of Guyana and a lawful permanent resident of the United States obtained my services. He was in removal proceedings and was in the custody of ICE. He had a conviction for possession of a loaded weapon in the State of NY, which made him ineligible to come out of custody on bond. I made an application for cancellation of removal and it was a long process of preparation. The family was very helpful in obtaining the documents. My client had to file back taxes as he was self-employed and failed to file his taxes for about four years. A big role played a well prepared testimony of the mother of my client.s child as to his role as a father in the baby.s life. After a long trial, the Immigration Judge granted my client.s cancellation of removal application and he was able to keep his green card.
A national of Germany retained my services. She was married to a U.S. citizen and her spouse filed an immigrant visa petition on her behalf and she filed her application for adjustment of status. However, she required an I-601 waiver for the fraud that she has committed. When she initially came to the U.S., she had an O visa as an extraordinary ability professional. However, when she came, she found out that the company that sponsored her O visa is in process of being dissolved. She never worked for the sponsoring company, but easily found a job somewhere else. After a brief trip abroad, a CBP officer asked my client whether she still worked for the sponsoring company and she replied that she did, when in fact she did not. Hence, when her husband filed for her, she needed a fraud waiver for committing fraud at that entry. The couple had an attorney who prepared a very superficial waiver and failed to prove extreme hardship to her spouse and as a result her case was denied. I had the choice of either appealing the case or refilling it anew. There were various reasons why as a legal strategy I chose to re-file her case instead of appealing it. It ended up being the right decision for my client. She quickly received her interview and her waiver that was already really well prepared by me was approved about a week after her interview.
A young married lesbian couple from Russia retained my services. They were both here on student visas and in their third year of college they decided to get married. They were High School sweet hearts and both experienced a great deal of discrimination and persecution in Russia on account of their sexual orientation. After their asylum interview, their case was referred to Immigration Court mainly because the asylum officer could not understand the fact that they did not have a first date as they were just teenagers and were trying to hide not only their feelings, but also their relationship. In Immigration Court, during their direct testimony and cross-examination, both the Immigration Judge and the trial attorney found them more than credible. The trial attorney indicated she would not appeal and take the decision as final. The Immigration Judge granted asylum to these very educated and bright young women!
A family of a Jamaican national has retained my services. This person was in trouble and was detained by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). He was a lawful permanent resident (green card holder) since 1989. In 2007, he was convicted of criminal possession of marijuana. He was found with 26 pounds of marihuana on him. This conviction is a class D felony and although is not an aggravated felony for immigration purposes does subject a person to removal and mandatory detention, meaning he was not eligible to obtain bond once in ICE.s custody. This individual has 3 U.S. citizen children and has a very good work history. I applied for cancellation of removal. It was an up the hill battle and it took several months to compile the documents and evidence in support of his claim. During trial, the Immigration Judge found that the positive factors outweighed the negative factors and granted cancellation of removal and my client was able to retain his green card. He was released from ICE.s custody that same day. His family and children could not be any happier.
Several years ago, I was retained by a married couple. The wife was a green card holder and the husband was undocumented. The husband has been in this country for almost 20 years and has been scammed by notaries and other people pretending to be lawyers. Eventually, the wife filed an immigrant visa petition on his behalf without the help of an attorney and they came to me when they received a very long request for evidence from the Immigration Service. This couple had very unusual joint documents in that, he was very ill and she was there for him every step of the way, meaning they may not have had too many photos or utility bills or even a bank account. They did file their taxes jointly and she was listed as the spouse and emergency contact on all of his medical documents and forms. I successfully replied to the Service.s request explaining one by one the reasons for unavailability of the documents they were requesting ad providing the documents that were available and others not even mentioned by the Service. The I-130 was approved. A few years later, the couple returned after the wife became a U.S. citizen. This man is now a proud green card holder!
An Afghan national retained my services when he was referred to an Immigration Court by the Asylum Officer here in the NY District. This man was highly educated and has worked for government and Western backed organizations while he was in Afghanistan. He was persecuted by the Taliban due to his professional work in these organizations. He was referred by the asylum officer as that particular officer did not find him credible. However, a closer look at the notice of intent to deny would show that the officer was very confused and mixed up dates herself. My client was assigned to one of the toughest judges in the NY District. The case was also on a fast track. Within a month, I prepared his documents and him. After a successful trial, my client was granted asylum in the United States!
I was retained by a national of Trinidad. She entered the United States legally, but lost her I-94 card. She also had an arrest for shoplifting. This individual had a U.S. citizen spouse. For one reason or another, she went to several attorneys that were unable to help her obtain a duplicate I-94 card and were giving her and her spouse wrong immigration advice. She was in a good faith marriage and the couple had three children, but for some reason, they were always steered in the wrong direction as to how to go about adjusting her status. Step by step, I obtained her disposition, then obtained her duplicate arrival/departure record (I-94) and then we filed for her adjustment of status. She now has a 10 year green card and the entire family is happy and grateful!
A national of Malaisia came to Ms. Vaisman after her green card was denied by USCIS. She was married to a United States citizen and a denial was the last thing they expected. Her green card was denied because she originally came to the United States with a J-1 visa that had a home residency requirement. Ms. Vaisman successfully processed the J-1 visa waiver based on hardship to her client's spouse. Thereafter, she refiled the adjustment of status and the case was successfully granted.
A client, a Ukrainian national, retained my services after she and her adult son lost their asylum case before the Immigration Court. Prior attorney filed an appeal to the Board of Immigration Appeals, which was denied. I suggested that we make a Motion to Reopen/Reconsider to the Board of Immigration Appeals based on changed circumstances. The reason I suggested this is because after reading the full transcript from the trial, I realized that the case was denied by the judge based on adverse credibility, mainly the son's testimony. The judge observed the behavior of my clients at trial and indicated that the son's testimony was less than credible and that his mother was coaching him. After further inquiry, I learned that the son has a severe mental incapacity and a cognitive disorder based on the persecution he suffered back home and probably could not stand trial. I obtained medical evidence of the same and the Board agreed with me! They remanded this case back to the Immigration Judge for further consideration of cognitive problems. On remand, after years of litigation and through documents and trial, I proved the son's inability to testify. His mother was a credible witness and was able to give testimony on his behalf. Both were granted asylum!
A married couple retained my services. The husband was a U.S. citizen and the wife was a national of St. Lucia. They filed for adjustment of status and the case was denied because they did not appear at their interview. Less than a month prior to the interview my client had a knee surgery and 2 days prior to the interview realized that she would not be able to walk and physically get to the interview, however, they did not have an attorney and failed to reschedule the interview. I refilled the adjustment application right away in order to avoid being placed into removal proceedings. My client also later advised me that she was arrested and the criminal case is still pending. It was a true case of wrongful arrest because she was the victim. However, because of the way our criminal system works, the case could not be resolved quickly. I worked closely with the criminal attorney and he assured me that the case will be dismissed after it goes through the bureaucratic procedure. After the Immigration Service issued a Notice of Intent to Deny based on failure to present a final criminal disposition, I successfully prevented the case from being denied with an interim disposition and an explanation letter from the criminal attorney and subsequently we were able to submit the final criminal disposition and my client received her green card!
A married couple, wife a U.S. citizen of Jamaican decent and husband a national of Germany retained my services after they were referred to a second (Stokes) interview by the Immigration Service. I carefully prepared this couple for this very difficult interview and prepared their joint documents. I suspect that one of the reasons they were referred for a second interview was because it was an interracial marriage. It was a very long Stokes interview and my clients had to answer very difficult questions, but they successfully passed it and my client obtained his permanent green card.
I was retained to represent a lawful permanent resident, a national of Jamaica, after he was placed into removal proceedings. He had several convictions for possession of marihuana. My client had a minor U.S. citizen child and the mother of this child, my client.s girlfriend suffered from lupus. I applied for Cancellation of Removal and at trial proved to the judge that not only did my client rehabilitate himself from his former criminal past, but also that the mother of the qualifying relative suffered from a deadly disease and by the nature of the disease she could only get worse and this child potentially will be left an orphan. After heated closing remarks with the attorney from the government, the judge cited with me and granted the relief. My client was released from detention and was able to keep his green card!
I was retained by a Byelorussian national to file for asylum based on his political beliefs and membership to a political group in opposition of the current government. I successfully prepared the case and my client was granted asylum after the administrative interview. After a year, we filed for adjustment of status. However, shortly thereafter, he was caught with the wrong company and was arrested on some very serious Federal charges. I guided him through the criminal proceedings so that the plea he took was not an aggravated felony. When my client was finally scheduled for his adjustment of status interview, I prepared an INA I-602 waiver (a waiver used for asylees and refugees to waive their inadmissibility, in this case the guilty plea). The waiver was very strong as my client had many equities in his favor and the criminal conviction was the only negative factor. USCIS agreed with me and my client received his green card!
I represented a man, a national of Trinidad and a green card holder for about 30 years in his removal proceedings. He worked as a home attendant and his patient, an elderly man who had problems with capacity, decided to throw out/give up some of his possessions. One such procession was a very valuable painting by Georgia Totto O'Keeffe. My client picked this painting up. Shortly thereafter, the elderly patient.s family realized that this very valuable painting was missing. My client was arrested for stealing this painting. He took a guilty plea and did not serve any jail time. This incident happened in the early 1990.s. Many years later, he was traveling and returning home from abroad. He was stopped by Customs and Border protection and placed into removal proceedings. I applied for INA 212(c) waiver before the Immigration Court and successfully won this case. Right after I won, I filed for my client.s citizenship and within about a year, he became a U.S. citizen.
I was retained to represent a woman, a national of Trinidad, who filed documents for adjustment of status (her sister sponsored her). They did all of the documents all by themselves and did them wrong. My client lived in the U.S., but the way documents were filed, she was scheduled for her green card interview in Trinidad. When she came to the interview, the officer right away indicated that she was barred to return to the U.S. for 10 years as she has lived here illegally for over one year and required an I-601 waiver. My client.s sister, a U.S. citizen who originally petitioned her is not deemed a qualifying relative for the purposes of the waiver. However, their elderly mother, a green card holder, who resided with them in the U.S., was a qualifying relative. I structured the waiver in such a way to explain and evidence extreme hardship to the green card holder mother through the Petitioner sister. I worker closely with a psychologist and the medical doctors to evidence hardship. Other factors of hardship, for example economics also played a role in this case. The waiver was approved and my client was allowed to return with her green card!
I was retained by a family who were all United States citizens. It was an elderly mother, her daughter and the daughter.s husband. The elderly woman had another daughter who permanently resides in Ukraine and has a life and family there. Many years ago, she was granted refugee status, but decided to stay in Ukraine. The sister who lives in Ukraine tried to obtain a non-immigrant tourist visa several times, but was denied during all of those times. Once I was retained, we went over all of the facts and it turns out that the consular applications were incorrectly filled out. The family mistakenly thought that the old refugee case was an Immigrant Visa petition and kept on answering that there was an immigrant visa petition that was filed on the sister.s behalf. Moreover, I briefed all issues for the consular officer explaining that the visa is only needed for tourism purposes as this family has not seen each other for a very long time and that the elderly mother can no longer make such a difficult trip. A tourist visa was granted.
I was retained by a family, husband and wife. The husband was a national of Jamaica and Lawful Permanent Resident of the United States and the wife was a national of Belarus and was undocumented. They have been married for almost 10 years when I was retained. The husband needed help with citizenship. He has never been arrested, did not have a problem with his taxes and had no problems with child support. The problem was, he could not read or write in English even though English is his native language. I spoke to the couple at length and decided to send the husband for a special neurological evaluation and testing with a medical doctor. After he went through all of the necessary testing, it was determined that he had cognitive disabilities. We filed the N-648, medical waiver (Medical Certification for Disability Exceptions) and he was granted citizenship! Thereafter, we applied for the wife.s green card. It was very difficult to prepare this family for their marriage interview because the husband had a hard time remembering facts and dates. Despite the fact that this was a long marriage and the couple had numerous joint documents together such as a house, joint medical insurance, income taxes, bank accounts, car insurance and other documents, the officer gave them a really hard time and I even had to make certain objections at this interview. However, despite the difficulties, the wife was granted her green card!
A young girl, 18 years old, national of Lithuania, retained me after the President announced Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA). This girl came here when she was about 5 years old with her parents. They came on lawfully issued tourist visas. The father obtained an H-1B visa for professionals and the girl was his derivative. However, subsequently, he was misled by bad legal advice and the family lost their status. The girl continued to live her life and graduated from High School. After DACA was announced, she was a perfect candidate. I gathered all of the necessary evidence that the government required and the girl obtained deferred action and received her employment authorization.
I was retained by a woman, a United States citizen, whose husband is a national of St. Vincent and the Grenadines. This couple had a child and they processed all of his documents by themselves. However, they incorrectly filed his paper work and the husband was sent to have his immigrant visa interview back home. When he went to the interview, the consular officer indicated that he cannot be granted a visa and requires a waiver for unlawful presence (I-601 waiver). This family had very unique circumstances where their child was cared for by the father as the mother worked. The child also had asthma and the whole family had medical insurance through the mother. When the family learned that they need to file this waiver and that it will take a long time, they had to send the child to live with the father in St. Vincent as the mother could not afford to quit her job and place the child to private day care as the mother.s work hours did not allow her to place the child in a public day care. So this woman, a U.S. citizen was separated not only from her loving husband, but also from her minor child. I did the I-601 waiver and submitted numerous documents to establish this woman.s hardship. The waiver was granted and this family is now happily reunited!
A national of Ukraine retained me after DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) was announced. She was very hesitant like many others as people were simply scared. She was brought to the United States when she was 13 years old on fraudulent documents. She did not remember who brought her and how as she was a kid. When she came to me, she was already a young woman who had graduated from High School and College. I filed her application for deferred action, however, this young woman did not have too many documents to show her physical presence in the country for some of the years between 2007 and 2012. In the middle of the process, USCIS sent us a request for evidence. I had to be creative to come up with documents and the young woman had to contact an old internship program to evidence her presence. But we were able to overcome the challenged and she received deferred action. When her employment authorization came by mail, she called me and told me that this was the happiest day of her life.
A national of Tajikistan retained my services as she was seeking asylum. Tajikistan is predominantly a Muslim country with an authoritarian government. The government tries to crack down religion and with its pursuit to curb extremism. However, the government.s practice is so repressive, many innocent citizens are harmed. My client was one of those people. Her husband was arbitrarily arrested and beaten several times. Their house was searched without a warrant on several occasions and after her husband was forced into hiding, the government officials were following my client. The woman was so scared, it took many meeting to have her confide in me so that I could properly present and prepare her case. After her asylum interview, she was granted her status as an asylee.
I was retained by a national of Jamaica who was placed into removal proceedings. He was a Lawful Permanent Resident of the United States for many years. My client had one conviction from about 20 years ago for gun possession. In court after numerous discussions with the trial attorney, I proved that my client has relief available to him and I would be able to reinstate his green card. Therefore, instead of wasting the government.s resources, the trial attorney decided to exercise prosecutorial discretion in this matter and the immigration judge terminated my client.s removal proceedings.
I was retained by a national of Moldova. Her mother was a United States citizen and filed an immigrant visa petition on her behalf. My client was in the United States on a lawfully issued student (M-1) visa. However, over the years, she changed her status from F-1 to M-1 and vice versa. Somewhere in the middle of her changing her non-immigrant student statuses, she lost her status for a while and had to reinstate it. However, this was a big problem for adjustment of status purpose because she had to have maintained continuous lawful presence during her entire stay here, unless she was grandfathered under what is called 245(I) law. I made a Motion to Reopen and Reconsider her adjustment denial and argued that falling out of status was not her fault explaining carefully the facts of this particular matter. The government agreed and granted adjustment!
A national of Russia retained my services. She is married to a United States citizen and she had her conditional green card and it was time to file her documents to remove the conditions on her green card. She was still married to and resided together with her spouse, but they were a young couple who did not have many joint documents together. I filed her petition to remove conditions and submitted the documents they had. We received a long request for evidence from USCIS and had to respond, even though the couple simply did not have many of the documents the government was asking for (the typical documents such as joint bank accounts and medical insurance). But we were creative and submitted other documents. Pictures played a large role in this particular case. The government though was still not satisfied and asked this couple to go for an interview, I prepared them and they had no problems at the interview after which she received her permanent green card.
I was retained by a national of St. Vincent and the Grenadines. She was placed into removal proceedings after she filed her documents for adjustment of status. She was married to a United States citizen and they had a child together. The problem was not with her marriage as the government actually approved her husband.s I-130 petition. The problem was her entry to the United States. She came through a Canadian border. She did not present fraudulent documents, in fact she did not present any documents at all. She was simply driven through by someone who was a U.S. citizen. As such, there was no proof of entry. In court, I argued that she was eligible to adjust her status as she availed herself for inspection at the border. I used fairly recent Board of Immigration Appeals case law on the issue and I did a very thorough direct examination of her and her witnesses who had knowledge of her entry. The Immigration Judge and the trial attorney agreed with me and she was able to adjust status and obtain her green card!
I was retained by a national of Belarus who had his asylee status. He had to apply for his green card. It was more than a year as he had a conviction for DUI. All DUI and DWI convictions are considered serious for immigration purpose. I submitted his application for a green card and at the interview presented evidence of his good moral character and evidence that he has no drinking problem and it was a one time mistake. He received his green card shortly after the interview.
I was retained by a couple, both nationals of the former Soviet Union. In this case, it was a Lawful Permanent Resident wife who filed I-130 only on behalf of her spouse. They did the documents by themselves and received a very long and specific list of documents by the Immigration Services. They did not have many of the documents the government was looking for in their request. We had to do affidavits explaining why they do not have these specific documents and I asked them together other documents that they did have, but the government did not particularly ask for them, but they showed the bona fide nature of the marriage. I submitted all of these documents and the government approved this I-130 petition.
I was retained by a U.S. citizen who was trying to file adjustment of status for her mother, a national of Uzbekistan, but physically present in the U.S. The problem was that at entry, after she successfully went through inspections and issued an I-94 card, the mother.s purse was stolen. At that time, they did not pay that much attention to it as the mother thought she would be leaving the U.S. But as life shows anything can happen and she ended up staying much passed the timing issued on the I-94 card (about 16 years after). They tried restoring the I-94 and worked with several attorneys, who just took their money, but were unsuccessful. When they came to me, they were desperate. I told them that we would have to take a step or two back in order to take a leap forward. That was exactly what we did. One step at the time, first I located the CBP records that proved that in fact the mother flew in and came to the country when she said she did. Subsequently, with these records I was able to restore the I-94 card. After that, I filed the adjustment of status package and this woman now has her green card!
I was retained by a Jamaican national who wanted to file for his citizenship. He had a federal conviction that dealt with drugs from a long time ago. First, I obtained not only the certified criminal disposition, but all arrest and court records regarding this criminal case. Then, I gathered documents of good moral character and rehabilitation (as this person was now a husband, a father and an established professional). I filed his N-400 application and his citizenship was approved several months after his interview.
I was retained by a national of Jamaica. He was placed into removal proceedings after he traveled back home. He was a Lawful Permanent Resident for almost 33 years. The reason he was laced in removal proceedings was because he had several old convictions for minor possessions of marijuana. In immigration court, I applied for cancellation of removal providing all of the necessary documents and concentrating on his good moral character paying specific attention to the fcat that he had a stable job during all of the years he was in the United States, a family and paid his taxes. After testimony and with the help of all of the evidence submitted on paper, the Immigration Judge granted cancellation of removal and my client was able to restore his green card.
I was retained by a national of Russia. She had an outstanding removal order. However, her daughter was a United States citizen. I did a Motion to Reopen to the Immigration Court arguing that my client did not receive notice of her removal proceedings. The Court agreed and reopened the case. After that, the citizen daughter filed the I-130 petition, which was granted. The Immigration Judge terminated the removal proceedings and we submitted the adjustment of status application already before USCIS. This case lasted for a long time, but it was completely worthwhile. After about 20 years in this country, my client received her green card.
I was retained by a U.S. citizen who was trying to apply for a green card for her mother who was in Peru. The mother used to be in the United States (she came without inspection and lived here with her spouse and children for many years). Upon really bad and improper advice of a notario, my client filed for her mother, while she was still in the U.S. All documents were done improperly and the mother was scheduled for her consular immigrant visa interview in Peru. Without hesitating and still following the wrong advice of the notario, she left the U.S. to attend this interview. At the interview, she was told that she cannot be granted a visa because she was living the United States without permission and that she would need a waiver. However, the daughter cannot do the waiver on her behalf as for this particular waiver; the daughter does not count as a qualifying relative. This family was completely hard broken. Of course the notary was nowhere to be found at that time. I re-filed the I-130 having the daughter as the Petitioner, however, for the waiver, I used the mother.s husband, who was a Lawful permanent Resident. A lawful permanent resident is considered a qualifying relative for an unlawful presence (I-601) waiver. I submitted evidence of hardship for the entire family as this was a very unique case. After a long adjudication process, the waiver was approved and this family was reunited in the United States.
I was retained by a family who husband and son was detained and in removal proceedings. He was a national of Jamaica and a Lawful Permanent Resident of the United States. My client was detained and was unable to get bond due to the nature of his criminal convictions. He was still statutorily eligible for cancellation of removal and I submitted the application along with all necessary documents. It took a long time to prepare documents and witnesses. I met with the family on numerous occasions to prepare them for testimony. At trial, the Immigration Judge agreed to the statutory eligibility for cancellation and thought the family members were credible witnesses. He ended up granting the case and they went home together as my client was released from detention and his green card was restored.
I was retained by a Jamaican national who had a removal order entered against him. He was married to a United States citizen, but they did not pass the marriage (Stokes) interview and he was placed in removal. While in Court and through ineffective assistance of counsel, the Immigration Judge denied relief. When they came to me there was little time and I had to appeal the case to the Board of Immigration appeals arguing ineffective assistance of counsel. I also did something that was unusual. I tried to convince the BIA that this marriage is in fact bona fide. When I met with this couple, who was a young but very nice couple, I had no doubt in my mind that they are really living together as husband and wife. However, something was off about my client, he just simply could not retain information and remember dates. Then I learned that he also could not read and write. I quickly sent him for a neurological evaluation and he was found t have cognitive and learning disabilities. Hence, he could not pass the marriage interview as he simply could not answer the question. There was plenty of evidence that this marriage was bona fide as the couple was going through reproductive counseling as the wife was having difficulties getting pregnant. There was other significant evidence as well. As the Motion to the BIA was pending, he received a bag and baggage letter to appear at ICE (Immigration and Customs Enforcement). I appeared with him and his wife and made a successful argument that he should not be held and deported back to Jamaica as the appeal was pending. ICE agreed and issued an order of supervision. Shortly thereafter, the BIA granted my motion and the case was remanded back to the Immigration Judge. I proved the inability to pass he Stokes interview simply by answering questions and my client was eventually granted a green card!
I was retained by a national of Jamaica who was placed in removal proceedings after traveling abroad. He was a long time green card holder, but had very serious convictions for procession of cocaine from the early 1990s. Despite the old convictions, he was eligible for relief from removal in the form of former INA 212(c), which essentially is a constitutional argument. It was a very difficult case since the convictions were very serious. However, my client literally turned his life around, obtained a Bachelors degree, had an amazing job (convictions did not appear as they were expunged, but expungement does not work for immigration purposes). He was a very productive member of the community and had a long history of volunteering with various youth organizations. At trial, I was able to prove and convince the judge of the changed character of my client and statutory eligibility for relief. He was able to keep his green card!
Irene Vaisman, Esq.
11 Broadway, Suite 615
New York, NY 10004
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