Thursday, March 24, 2011

7 Reasons Why An Immigration Attorney Might Not Take Your Case (But Won't Tell You)

As with any other profession, immigration attorneys have difficult choices to make when deciding which cases to take on. Some reasons why the attorney won't take the case are very legitimate, and those tend to be centered around procedural, law, ethics, or competence grounds.  For example:
  • Not being entitled to any immigration relief.
  • The time to file an appeal is very close or has already lapsed.
  • There's a conflict of interest with other cases the attorney is handling or has handled in the past.
  • Representation would be unlawful, unethical or imprudent.
  • Commitments to current clients make it impossible to take on new cases.
  • Not being familiar with that particular area of the law.
Some reasons however, deal more with a matter of preference, lessons learned from previous cases, or personal pet-peeves. Although many factors come into play, here are some reasons why an immigration attorney might not take your case - but won't necessarily tell you: 
  1. You've had three previous attorneys, and none of the other five attorneys you've visited since then will take your case. 
  2. You're complaining about, and bad-mouthing, all of the attorneys mentioned in #1.
  3. You have your own opinions as to how the attorney should handle the case - regardless of what the law says.  
  4. You have unrealistic expectations as to the handling or outcome of the case.  
  5. You call the office four times before the initial consultation insisting to talk with the attorney because you "don't talk with staff" - just to ask for directions on how to get to the office.  
  6. You bring six people to the initial consultation, each one having their own immigration problems, and one being a notario that is just "helping out". You then ask for a discount on the initial consultation fee.
  7. Your three children are jumping up and down on the reception room sofa while trying to stick their hands with Oreo crumbs in your fish tank to hold the "little fishes".
OK, maybe I'm exaggerating a bit but you get the point.  I'm sure people have plenty of reasons why they wouldn't hire an attorney.  If you have some suggestions please let me know.