Over 40 years of combined experience in strategic U.S. Immigration counseling and representation

Our immigration law firm focuses primarily on working with businesses, entrepreneurs, investors, academic institutions and artists/entertainers to obtain temporary work permits or permanent residence.  We also work with families who wish to sponsor a foreign national for a green card.

Entrepreneurs & Start-ups

Several visa pathways allow foreign entrepreneurs who have already started or are about to start a new business to direct their new enterprise temporarily or permanently in the U.S. Lipson & Pretorius LLP can help you with the following:

Investors & EB-5 Visas

The EB-5 visa for Immigrant Investors provides a pathway for obtaining a green card for foreign nationals who invest money in the United States. We help guide investors in selecting between the 2 main investment options and implementing the most promising strategy:

Arts & Entertainment

The O  and P visas may be an appropriate  immigration strategy for persons with extraordinary ability in arts, business, film, television or athletics:

Professors & Researchers

Outstanding researchers and professors may be eligible for permanent residence based on proof of International Acclaim in their academic field or Extraordinary Ability in the arts, sciences, business or education , or by way of a National Interest Waiver petition. (Extraordinary Ability and NIW do not require employer sponsorship):

Family-based Immigration

Close U.S. citizen and permanent resident family relatives in the U.S. can sponsor foreign nationals for the green card. Close relationships include spouse, mother, father and siblings. A U.S. citizen can sponsor a fiancé from overseas to enter the U.S. so that the couple can marry in the U.S. and subsequently file for a green card:

J-1 Visa Waivers

Many J-1 scholars find themselves with a two-year home residence requirement which they must satisfy before switching to certain working visas or permanent residence. There is however, the possibility to waive this requirement by applying to the Department of State for a J-1 waiver based on one of the approved grounds.

They have an exceptional experience in this field, and they always figure out a way through the intricacies of immigration policy and bureaucracy.
—Dr. A.D, Professor and Software Engineer at Fortune 500 Company

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Distillery

A timely distillation of immigration strategies and events

USCIS Announces Limited Relief for H-4 Spouses

Today USCIS announced relief for a limited number of H-4 spouses who are awaiting the ability to work in the U.S.

Our reading of the announcement is that there are 2 groups of H-4 spouses who will benefit:

  • H-4 visa holders whose spouse has an approved I-140 petition for permanent residence
  • H-4 visa holders whose spouse has been granted H-1B status under what is know as “AC-21”. This provision allows H-1B visa holders seeking lawful permanent residence to remain and work in the U.S. beyond the ordinary 6-year limit in H-1B status.

Since many of our employment-based immigrant visa clients fall within categories that allow them to concurrently file an application for Adjustment of Status (AOS), including their immediate family members, and since the Employment Authorization Document for all eligible family members is issued during the pendency of the AOS application (usually within 60 to 90 days), the initiative by USCIS will be of limited benefit.

However, for those whose country of origin is India or China, the new policy could be extremely helpful. Currently, H-1B visa holders seeking permanent residence and whose country of origin is India or China may have a very long wait time to become eligible to apply for AOS, depending on their employment-based preference category. This is due to the lengthy wait times for priority dates to become current for India and China for certain preference categories. For these clients, we are excited to use the new H-4 provisions starting on May 26, 2015, when they go into effect.

Meet our Outstanding New Team Members!

Portrait of Carmel CasadoWe are pleased to announce that attorney Carmen Casado has joined Lipson & Pretorius LLP as Of Counsel. In this capacity, Carmen will be providing strategic immigration legal advice and counseling for our clients, with special emphasis on small and medium-sized businesses, including start-ups. Carmen is a citizen of both the US and Spain and has been practicing immigration law for over 10 years, in New York and San Francisco.

Portrait of Ting NiWe also welcome Ting Ni as Associate Attorney.  A cum laude graduate of Notre Dame law school, Ting has provided immigration legal services to a diverse set of clients, as part of Carmen Casado’s law practice.  Ting is fluent in Mandarin Chinese and will be based in our San Francisco office.

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Image of the VISA Geek logoAn authoritative immigration law blog reviewing and reporting changes to immigration laws, procedures and policies that affect businesses and individuals. Published by Lipson & Pretorius, LLP.