We understand that the cost of immigration services can be perplexing, as the cost of legal services may vary widely. We hope that this page can provide answers to some of the questions our office receives from individuals regarding the selection of an attorney, and legal fees that can be expected.

What is an immigration consultant?

You may find that there are numerous “Immigration Consultants” in your area who advertise their services for immigration matters. The fees charged by immigration consultants are often, but not always, low. The less costly fees charged by immigration consultants often make them appear to be an attractive alternative if you require help with an immigration matter, but are concerned with the amount of money involved. However, you should be warned that immigration consultants are not licensed immigration attorneys, and are not authorized to provide legal immigration advice. Immigration consultants often do not have the necessary experience or education necessary to properly handle immigration cases. Immigration consultants also do not have ethical obligations as imposed by the State Bar Association upon licensed attorneys.

The consequences of hiring an immigration consultant may be extremely adverse. Filing an ill-prepared immigration case can cause delays or even irreparably harm your chances of securing immigration benefits. Unfortunately, immigration consultants have accepted payment from unwitting individuals and failed to provide any services at all. In the end, hiring an immigration consultant rather than attorney may not be as cost effective an option as you believed. Many individuals have been forced to retain an attorney and expend substantial amounts of money to correct mistakes made by an immigration consultant.

How do most immigration attorneys charge for their services?

Some immigration lawyers charge fees for their services on a flat or fixed-fee basis while others charge hourly rates. Other immigration attorneys charge a combination of fees depending on the particular circumstances of the case. A flat or fixed-fee agreement requires the client to pay the attorney a set amount of money to represent the client with a particular immigration issue. The benefit of this fee structure is that the client knows the legal costs from the start and can budget accordingly. With an hourly agreement, the client typically pays the attorney a retainer fee to begin work on a case and is charged according to the time spent working on the matter. In some cases, the law firm can provide you with payment financing.

How does Grinberg & Segal charge for immigration services?

Attorneys legal fees vary depending on the type and complexity of your particular immigration case. Each attorney on this firm understand the financial difficulties associated with immigrant life. For many standard immigration services, Grinberg & Segal charges a “flat fee”. For difficult cases where the time involved in handling the case will vary, we charge an hourly retainer and we offer payment installment plan. Our law firm has years of experience and expertise in immigration law to ensure that your case is handled effectively, efficiently, and professionally. For more information on how Grinberg & Segal can assist you in regards to your immigration matter, please contact our office.

What factors determine the fee an immigration attorney will charge?

The fees charged by an immigration attorney can vary from case to case. The factors that often determine the appropriate fee include the complexity of the case as well as the attorney's experience and reputation. The more difficult the case, the more time the attorney will have to spend on the case to thoroughly prepare the matter. As such, a higher fee would be involved. The attorney's experience and reputation in the field also impact the fees charged. It is not unreasonable to expect to pay more for an attorney with ten years of experience in the field rather than an attorney with only two years of experience.

What is the difference between “fees” and “costs”?

Fees are the amount you will pay for the professional services provided by the attorney and his or her staff on your case. In addition to the attorney's fees for professional services, you will be expected to pay for costs. Costs typically include any filing fees charged by the Bureau of U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Service and courts, as well as other expenses such as postage, overnight delivery, photocopying, long-distance charges, etc. You should discuss with your attorney what is included in the quoted price as well as an estimate of the other expenses that may be incurred.

Do I need an immigration lawyer?

Determining whether you need a lawyer to handle your immigration matter is hard to figure out without being an experienced immigration lawyer. In general, it is in your best interest to contact an immigration lawyer to discuss your circumstances, and provide you with an estimate on how much it would cost to have the lawyer assist you. However, most lawyers will refer you to a bar association or other nonprofit agency that can assist you for free or for a reduced rate based on your income if you truly cannot afford to retain a lawyer to represent you.

Do I need Grinberg & Segal Lawyer?

Whether you need Grinberg & Segal lawyer depends upon your particular circumstances. If you are looking for the cheapest lawyer you can find to represent you, our firm is not for you. However, if you are seeking a Lawyer with a substantial experience in filing asylum/ refugee applications, representing individuals before immigration courts, defense from removal/ deportation, filing motions to reopen/ reconsider, appeals to the Board of Immigration Appeals, petitions before the Federal courts (i.e. petitions for reviews, petitions for habeas corpus, writs of mandamus, actions under the Administrative Procedure Act, etc.), permanent residency applications, petitions for victims of domestic violence, representing immigrants at interviews before USCIS, waivers of inadmissibility, filing non-immigrant worker petitions, naturalization, and criminal immigration problems, then we strongly encourage you to consider our firm.

Grinberg & Segal lawyers can also assist you, your family, or your company in almost any area of United States immigration law. Our immigration attorneys and staff achieve excellence in all of the immigration matters we handle. We can assist you with your immigration matter regardless the complexity of the situation. We will give you an honest and thorough opinion on your case. If you would like more information, please feel free to contact our office.

Why would I need an immigration attorney if so much information is available on the Internet?

While the Internet is a great resource for information about immigration, relying on information contained in a website or trying to file your own immigration petition can result in serious problems. It is important to remember each immigration case is different. Filing a poorly-prepared immigration petition can delay or even damage your chance of obtaining immigration benefits. United States immigration law is complex, complicated, and constantly ever changing as the law is derived from a myriad of statutes, federal regulations, and case law. Preparing an application for immigration benefits requires a comprehensive and up to date knowledge of immigration law. It also requires experience to determine how the laws apply for your particular situation. An immigration attorney has the necessary expertise to ensure that your petition is complete, well-prepared, and well-documented.

How do I choose the right lawyer for me?

You may wish to consider meeting with two or three immigration attorneys to develop a better sense of what fees and costs are reasonable. This will also allow you an opportunity to see how different attorneys would approach your unique situation. While the fees quoted by attorneys often vary, you should be cautious if there appears to a wide discrepancy between the fees quoted. In addition, please keep in mind that while an immigration consultant may seem like a cost effective alternative to hiring an immigration attorney, you should be aware that you could be putting you and your family's future in jeopardy. Please do your homework before selecting and retaining an immigration attorney.

What information should I get about an immigration attorney?

Prior to retaining an attorney or firm we recommend you research the background of the attorney and firm you are considering hiring. This will allow you to ensure the attorney and firm have a good reputation and experience to appropriately handle your case. You can visit their website, and contact the local State Bar to verify the individual is an attorney and obtain information regarding their status. After you have identified an attorney you are interested in working with, you should request an initial consultation with the attorney. The consultation will allow you an opportunity to meet with the attorney, learn more about the firm, ask questions about the services available, and obtain an estimate of fees and costs you can expect to pay for the case.