Skip to main content

Hiring a lawyer for your adoption/immigration case – read this first!

I had a great discussion on facebook last night with a fellow lawyer about the challenges adoptive parents face when trying to find competent legal counsel.  Here are some things you should consider before signing a retainer agreement: 

Has the lawyer processed cases in the country you are adopting?

Every country has its own nuances. Taiwan has the PAIR program. Pakistan has Mrs. Edhi and NADRA.  Mexico has DIF. And the list goes on.  If the lawyer hasn’t processed cases in your chosen country before, they won’t know about these things, won’t be able to advise you properly and will waste your time and money while they’re trying to figure it out.

How many cases has the lawyer processed before? How long has he or she been doing this? How many of these cases does the lawyer currently have pending?  

The more cases a lawyer has handled and the longer he or she has practiced, the more likely that they will be able to achieve a successful outcome for you. If the lawyer currently has cases pending that are similar to yours, it’s a good sign that they handle those types of cases routinely. 

Ask the lawyer what exactly he or she can do for you.

 A good lawyer will know exactly what needs to be done and how to do it. The lawyer should be able to provide you with specifics at the time of the initial consultation (I will file these applications;  you will need this evidence; I can advise you on these specific legal issues).  If the lawyer tells you that he or she will “guide you through the adoption process” find someone else.    Remember also that lawyers should not be offering to assist you with the homes study. You do not need a lawyer to assist you with obtaining a home study. You are paying an adoption agency/ social worker good money to assist you with this part of your case and it’s not a lawyer’s area of expertise. Lawyers also typically cannot help you find a baby in another country

A note about legal fees:

I have heard of desperate adoptive parents agreeing to pay enormous sums of money, (in some cases more than $15,000), for orphan petitions. Keep in mind that an international adoption from a well-established adoption agency will often cost over $20,000. If a private lawyer is charging you anywhere close to this amount to complete only the immigration portion of a case, something is very wrong.

 Don’t be afraid to ask for references.

Lawyers can’t provide you with the names and contact information for previous clients as this information is privileged but any lawyer who practices regularly in this area will be able to provide you with the names and contact information of other lawyers or people in the adoption community who can vouch for his or her services.  I have also asked previous clients to reach out to prospective adoptive parents to discuss the types of services I provide.

What other work does the law firm do?

Immigration and adoption are highly specialized areas. There are only a few attorneys in the United States who practice in this area routinely.  Try to find a firm that dedicates its practice exclusively to immigration issues.


  1. I think this blog is very helpful for those people who want to know about Immigration Lawyer. I also fully agree with you that A good lawyer will know exactly what needs to be done and how to do it. The lawyer should be able to provide you with specifics at the time of the initial consultation (I will file these applications; you will need this evidence; I can advise you on these specific legal issues). and more features must have a good immigration or any lawyer.


Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

If You Are An Immigrant (even a US Citizen), Here Are 9 Things You Should Know

Are you a Naturalized U.S. Citizen, Lawful Permanent Resident, Visa Holder, or an Undocumented Immigrant? We recommend you take the following steps to protect yourself in our current version of America.
The last couple of weeks have reminded immigrants, even naturalized U.S. citizens, that they were not born in the United States. Our office has received countless phone calls, emails, and social media messages from people worrying about what their family’s future in the United States holds.
Most people want to know what they can do now to protect themselves from what promises to be a wave of anti-immigration activity by the federal government. Trump's Executive Order on Interior Enforcement has some provisions that should make most Americans shiver.  We recommend the following actions for each of the following groups:
Naturalized U.S. citizens. In particular if you have a foreign accent, and you are traveling within 100 miles of any US Border (including the oceans), we strongly rec…

Why is USCIS Taking So Long to Renew DACA Work Permits?

If the calls to our office are any indicator, there are thousands of DACA recipients whose work permit applications were filed at least three months prior to expiration, who are still waiting for their renewed work permits.  Without renewed permits, these individuals lose the right to work legally, the right to drive, and may once again accrue unlawful presence.

The DHS published a notice in October 2014 advising DACA recipients that they could file their request for extension up to 150 days (5 months) prior to expiration.  As with all things government, very few of the DACA recipients, who tend not to frequent government websites, knew about the memo and many did not file so far before expiration perhaps thinking that extending a work permit was a like extending a drivers license, its is done in a few minutes.  As an experienced immigration lawyer will tell you, the USCIS does nothing quickly, and certainly does not worry that a person may lose their job or their driver's licens…


Todas las personas en los Estados Unidos, incluidos los extranjeros y aun los con ordenes de deportacion, tienen ciertos derechos básicos que deben ser respetados por los agentes de Inmigración y Aduanas (ICE). Estos derechos se derivan tanto de la Constitución de los Estados Unidos. y las leyes de Estados Unidos. Como extranjero, usted tiene los siguientes derechos:

Usted tiene el derecho de negar la entrada a un agente de ICE a su casa sin una orden válida. Esta orden debe ser firmado por un juez. Usted puede negarse a abrir la puerta, o se puede cerrar la puerta después de descubrir que el agente no tiene una orden válida. Los agentes del ICE generalmente no vienen con una orden judicial. Estos agentes suelen venir a la casa de alguien con una orden final de deportación, muy temprano en la mañana. Si alguien está golpeando en su puerta a las 6:00 am, no le es requerido abrir la puerta. Mirar fuera de primera. Si es un agente del gobierno, ust…