refugee attorney

Searching for an immigration attorney can prove to be a daunting task. There are lots of good lawyers scattered across the United States and the process of narrowing your choices may be confusing. Nevertheless, you can pinpoint the best attorney for you by searching for qualities that match your character and the circumstances around your immigration status.

Going through a lawyer’s resume can’t do much for you in terms of selecting an immigration attorney. What separates good lawyers from bad ones are the qualities that they possess. Below, the most crucial qualities that you need to search for in an immigration attorney are discussed.

Great Communication Skills

Attorneys need to be strong at communicating their ideas to both their clients and the court. If it was possible to observe the best immigration lawyers, you’ll see that they possess both written and oral communication abilities. The core parts of communication skills include clarity and persuasion.

Clarity involves breaking down complex issues into a string of simple concepts that a layman can easily understand. Although the authorities don’t need this type of clarity, clients have to make sense of their cases. The fact remains that at some point, you’ll have to make some vital decisions about your case.

If you don’t understand the technicalities surrounding your case, you are more prone to making a bad decision. If your immigration lawyer continues to speak legal jargon, it wouldn’t help your case. Attorneys that can clarify legal terms and phrases help to take a lot of weight off your shoulders.

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Persuasion is also another aspect of communication that involves you, the client and the authorities. The whole point of hiring an immigration attorney is to convince the authorities that you need to remain in the country. Hence, the first test of any immigration lawyer you want to choose is to persuade you to take them on.

If the lawyer is doing a poor job of it, it is doubtful that they’d be able to convince the US immigration authorities about your case.

An Eye for Detail

The US immigration authorities mandate that an immigration application must be entirely accurate. Even a small error can transform into big issues for your case. The best thing that could happen to you if there’s an error is that your application would be delayed for an extended period even if the mistake is minor.

The worst thing that could happen to your case is that it could make you lose the case. Nevertheless, both outcomes are unfavorable and you need to do everything possible to avoid them.

Immigration applications usually necessitate lots of paperwork and this could result in a few errors that could cause irreparable damage. If you’re applying for asylum, you need a refugee attorney that can carefully you’re your application details. When you’re consulting an attorney, you’ll have a better idea of whether they pay attention to detail.


Empathy is possibly the most crucial quality you need to search for when you want to choose an immigration lawyer. You need to ask if the lawyer cares about your case. The truth is that some lawyers are compassionate about their clients and others aren’t.

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If you’re not the best at judging characters, during the consultation, you can bring along a trusted person to help you decide if the lawyer is compassionate. Checking reviews and testimonials also helps when trying to decide if an attorney has empathy.

This intangible quality is very crucial especially if you’re making a flat payment to an immigration lawyer. The fact is that whether you win or lose the case, the attorney will make the same amount of money. Lawyers that lose immigration cases always fault the authorities even when they do sloppy jobs.

That’s where empathy makes the difference. A lawyer who is truly compassionate about your case will not think about the compensation and strive to ensure that you win.

Even if you’re paying your attorney hourly, you also need to note if your lawyer is compassionate. Some bad lawyers know that they might never cross paths with you again if you’re deported and go about their jobs poorly.

Strategic Pessimism

While this might seem like a bizarre quality to look out for in an immigration lawyer, it is vital to the success of your application. When you’re making a case, there are specific things that could go wrong.

An immigration attorney has to manage that risk by evaluating everything that can specifically go wrong with your case and building a counter for all of them. This way, the probability of winning your case becomes higher.

If your attorney comes off as too optimistic, you might need to get the opinion of a strategically pessimistic lawyer.

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Listening Skills

While listening skills could be included under communication qualities, it is a feature that requires its own class. Most attorneys know exactly what to do to make an application get approved by immigration authorities in the United States.

Nevertheless, the key to the success of an application heavily relies on the listening skills of the lawyer. The circumstances surrounding applicants’ cases are different and this means that no model can solve everyone’s problem. That’s why you have to hire a lawyer that can properly listen to your situation before making an analysis and creating a plan.

You could search for a lawyer that speaks your native language if you want to be assured of their listening skills. Nevertheless, you have to avoid the mistake of thinking that lawyers that speak your native language will automatically do the job well for you. If the lawyer has a subpar performance, it wouldn’t help your case.


No matter what kind of legal advice you want, you need to have a lawyer that can persevere when taking on your case. Immigration applications can sometimes move very slowly and things might not happen the way you expect them to.

If at some point, you’re losing hope and it feels like everything is against you, it pays to have a persevering lawyer by your side. An attorney’s positive attitude can go a long way to inspiring you to succeed.

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