I do not take employment-based immigration cases. My website clearly indicates what areas of immigration law I practice. Despite the fact that my website makes no reference to employment-based immigration, I am regularly contacted by people looking for free consultations about employment-based immigration.
My website is very clear that my primary practice area is deportation defense. [I also do family-based adjustment of status and naturalization cases]. I offer free consultations because people who are facing deportation are usually looking to hire an immigration attorney. People who contact me about an adjustment of status or naturalization are usually looking to hire an immigration lawyer. Thus, I do not mind speaking to or meeting these people for free because they are contacting me for the purpose of hiring me.
By contrast, people who are getting green cards or visas through employment-based immigration are not usually looking to hire an immigration attorney. People with employment-based immigration issues usually fall into one of the following categories: (1) their employers are paying for their immigration papers and they want an independent opinion of the work that is being done; (2) they want to know what kind of job will entitle them to an employment visa and when they get that job, their employer will pay for their immigration papers; or (3) there is a problem with their job where they are getting their employment visa and they want advice about what happens if they lose their job. Basically, what it comes down to is that these individuals are looking for free legal advice. They are not actually looking for a “true” consultation because they have no interest in the lawyer’s services. Private practice attorneys offer free consultations to get clients.
Another reason that I offer free consultation is that potential clients who fall within my practice areas tend not to be well off financially. By comparison, people who have employment-based immigration issues have good jobs that usually require that they have a minimum of a college education. If you have questions about a labor certification, H-1B, O visa, EB-2, EB-5, or L-1/2 visa, you should be making enough money to pay an immigration attorney a consultation fee. These people should be embarrassed to be trolling the internet for free consultations. Basically, people looking for labor certifications, H-1B, O visa, EB-2, EB-5, or L-1/2 visas are not the kind of people that an immigration lawyer would want to provide free help to – these are NOT people who are struggling financially because of their immigration status.
Ultimately, the reason the people with employment-based immigration issues should not be trolling the internet for free consultations is that employment-based immigration lawyers do not usually offer free consultations. All of the employment-based immigration attorneys that I know charge consultation fees. There are two reasons for this. First, many people who contact employment-based immigration lawyers are not looking to hire an attorney but are looking for free legal advice. Employment-based immigration lawyers are essentially corporate attorneys – they do not give out free legal advice. Second, if you really qualify for an employment-based immigration visa, you should be able to afford a consultation fee. If I did employment based immigration law, I would be charging consultation fees. However, I do not practice employment-based immigration.