Hiring the first lawyer you find online
Do not hire an experienced lawyer just because they are experienced or hires the most expensive staff. This is a costly mistake! Any lawyer can make mistakes and end up costing you more money and sleepless nights in the future. Experienced lawyers know what they’re doing, but they’re not the right fit for your case. Lawyer experience is essential, but it can also be misleading in certain circumstances. Generally speaking, more experienced lawyers tend to charge higher rates.
Beware of “ambulance chasers.” Their prices are low, and they give the impression of being enthusiastic and eager to help you. This is a red flag. They might be able to get you into Canada fast; however, their work tends to be slipshod because it’s usually done in haste so that those agents can move onto the next case as quickly as possible. You want someone who will care about your well-being during the entire process and take their time to ensure its success! I have even seen cases where these representatives would inadvertently jeopardize your application status when making mistakes on behalf of their clients.
Not asking for a consultation before hiring them
Many of the clients that I see have hired an immigration lawyer without having had a consultation first. This is because they were referred to an attorney by someone else, who did not take the time to find out whether that attorney was right for them. Other times it’s simply because they Googled “Houston immigration lawyers” and picked one at random.
They have not gone through our attorney profile pages and found an attorney with experience with the issue they need help with, and then called to talk to them about their situation. One of the jobs of a lawyer is to protect you from making a wrong decision, so it is crucial that you speak to a few different lawyers about your case before deciding whether to hire one or not.
Failing to ask about their qualifications and experience
When choosing an immigration lawyer, many clients ask around their social circle for recommendations or begin to conduct online research to find someone who specializes in the relevant area of law. But this approach can be problematic as it relies heavily on personal opinion and isn’t always thorough enough for the nuances of selecting an immigration attorney.
The first thing you need to do when evaluating an immigration attorney is to ask for their credentials. If they are not members of the American Immigration Lawyers Association, you should check with your local courts or state bar program to see if they are licensed. Never hire individuals who aren’t adequately licensed in the field because these people will be unable to practice law and hold themselves out as practicing lawyers even though they have no qualifications whatsoever.
Only looking at positive reviews without reading any negative ones.
You are ignoring any negative reviews to justify your choice in hiring someone. It would help if you had a clear understanding of the mistakes an immigration lawyer is likely to make as well as their strengths and weaknesses before you hire them.
They are hiring an immigration lawyer who is not experienced with your specific type of case (i.e., family, work, asylum). Immigration lawyers will differ in their expertise and specialty areas; for instance, some may be vastly more experienced in helping clients apply for citizenship through marriage than others.
Assuming all immigration lawyers are the same and only look at the price
When you are hiring an immigration lawyer, it is natural to want to hire someone for their knowledge and experience. It is also natural to enjoy services at a cheaper rate. Most people tend not to realize that lawyers charge different fees depending on their practice areas and years of experience.
The immigration process can be complex, which means you need someone with more than ten years’ worth of experience handling cases involving deportation, citizenship applications, and reviewing petitions for work visas or marriage-based green cards. Applying for citizenship or naturalization has become more complex over the past few years, so having an experienced attorney will ensure that your application gets accepted.
For more information, you may ask or consult with Houston immigration lawyers.