Immigration reform segment on "Al Punto".

This Sunday I had the opportunity to participate in a panel on Univision's "Al Punto" to talk about immigration reform and answer some questions.

During the course of the segment, Mr. Juan Jose Gutierrez, who is not a licensed attorney or federally accredited representative, said that people not authorized by law can give legal advice to immigrants. In addition, he said that all persons with deportation orders will be able to apply for the legalization program recently proposed in the U.S. Senate.

His comments alarmed and concerned me greatly and I insisted on the importance of legal representation to carry out immigration proceedings. In addition, I clarified that not all people with deportation orders will be able to apply for the Senate's legalization program if it is approved. This is stipulated on pages 70 to 76 of the legal project.

Immigration law does not require that an applicant for immigration benefits be represented by an immigration attorney. However, if the person is unable to represent himself or herself and needs assistance, the federal government only authorizes licensed attorneys, law students who are supervised by attorneys, and representatives accredited by the Board of Immigration Appeals to give legal advice and represent them before the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) and the immigration court.

These requirements are outlined in the USCIS website.

Immigration law is complicated and applying for an immigration benefit is not just a matter of filling out a form. Before beginning any immigration process, a legal analysis must be done to determine if the person is eligible for the benefit he or she plans to apply for.

Each case is different and many factors come into play here within the person's background. For example, did the person enter the country legally, did they enter with a visa but became undocumented, did they leave the U.S. and return to the country after becoming undocumented, and do they have a criminal record? These are just some of the questions, the answers to which could change the outcome of an application for immigration benefits.

Be very careful with anyone who guarantees to get you your papers. It is impossible to guarantee an outcome when filing an immigration case because the federal government is the one that decides whether an immigration case is approved or denied. You can read other tips on how to avoid becoming a victim of fraud by clicking here. here.

If the information in an application is true, that is, if the applicant has not lied, and if he or she meets the requirements set forth by law, the immigrant should be approved for the benefit he or she is applying for.

If the person is of limited means and cannot afford a private attorney, he or she should go to a non-profit organization that has attorneys or legal representatives accredited by the federal government for assistance.

It is a shame to jeopardize your legal future in this country by not going to legal professionals. Many people choose to go to notaries, immigration consultants, paper fillers and multi-services because they think they will be charged less. This is a big mistake.

First, if a notario, immigration consultant or paperwork filler gives you legal advice, they are breaking the law. It is illegal for them to give advice. Second, I know of many cases of clients who have come to me, after having lost thousands of dollars with a notario, immigration consultant or fills out paperwork, without getting results or worse, whose case was harmed because they submitted the wrong forms to USCIS or the immigration court.

Here you can watch the segment that was aired on "Al Punto", which lasts almost 14 minutes: