Whether you are applying for a green card, defending yourself against removal, or any other immigration issues, you need an immigration attorney on your side. The lawyer represents you in a court hearing, helps you file documentation, and ensures you do not make mistakes that can jeopardize your case. But before you hire an attorney, you need to schedule a consultation with them for any questions you may have. After that, you can decide whether you will retain a lawyer. So, how do you prepare for your consultation? Here are some tips to guide you.
Prepare A List of Questions You Would Like To Ask
Obviously, there are certain concerns you have regarding the case and the potential attorneys. So, note down any questions you may want to ask. For instance, ask whether they have handled cases like yours before. Asking about the attorneys’ track record is a simple request that the lawyer should have no issues answering. You should also ask what your chances of success are. It is good to be realistic. Not all immigration cases are successful. Some take several trials before getting a positive outcome. A knowledgeable immigration attorney knows how certain cases turn out and will know what strategies to use on your case. Lastly, ask about time. Good immigration lawyers tend to have a lot on their plates. Too many cases can prevent an attorney from giving your case the attention it deserves. It is good to know whether the lawyer will have adequate time for your case.
Carry Your Immigration Documents To The consultation
When going for the first consultation, bring all your relevant documents with you. For instance, carry copies of documents that have been filed by the USCIS or ICE. Include immigration receipts, notices, and decisions and bringing copies of passports, green cards, birth certificates, marriage certificates, and employment authorization cards. If you have an immigration court hearing in the next few weeks and you have got a notification in writing, bring a copy of it as well. That way, the attorney can also confirm the date and be present for the hearing.
Arrive On Time
When the attorney schedules you for a particular time, be there on time. That allows you to make the most of the time you have. If you are late, there is a possibility that you will not manage to get all the answers to your questions. That means having to schedule another meeting, and if your case is urgent, you might not get the help you need on time. Arrive at least 15 minutes earlier to find time to park the car, find the office, and fill in the consultation form.
Be Prepared For Anything
It is good to find immigration attorneys that will strive to help you in the best way possible. However, it is not all the time you will hear what you want. At times, the attorney will give you different information than what you expected. It is the duty of the lawyer to let you know whether you have the chance of winning the case or not. So, manage your expectations from the start to make things easier.
Your attorney works with the information you provide. If you hold back, you are limiting the chances of winning the case. Plus, the government already has your full history and can use this against you. Do not put yourself at a disadvantage by not being honest. Also, note that the attorney cannot give you proper legal counsel without all the information.
The purpose of a consultation is to get to know an attorney and how they can help. Make the most out of it by preparing adequately using the tips mentioned above.