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How to Find a Good Immigration Attorney?

  • a couple of weeks ago
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How to Find a Good Immigration Lawyer

As anyone who has gone through the process will tell you, navigating any area of immigration law is not an endeavor that you will want to go through alone. There is extensive paperwork, and the requirements can often be very confusing. Many immigrants are not clear about everything required of them during the process, and this lack of information can become a barrier from being able to secure documentation. A good immigration attorney can make all the difference in a case, while a bad one can overcharge, make false promises, and affect your case negatively. Don’t let poor or insufficient legal representation be the reason you or your loved ones loses the chance to achieve their legal status in the United States. Read ahead on how to find a good immigration attorney.

Questions to Ask an Immigration Attorney

Q: What is your experience with immigration cases like mine?

A: Immigration Law covers a number of different types of cases, from those involving requests for visas and naturalization to cases related to deportation from the United States. Each of these instances requires extensive work based on the particular case. It is essential to have an attorney who understands and knows how to handle your specific case.

Q: How much is your practice dedicated to immigration cases?

A: Just because an attorney practices immigration law does not mean that it is their exclusive or primary focus. Knowing how much time an attorney commits to immigration cases can be an indication of whether or not they will prioritize your case.

Q: Will you be overseeing my case through to its resolution? Who else will be working on my case?

A: Knowing this upfront can help you figure out whether you should place your case and trust in a particular attorney’s hands. You don’t want your case to be passed off to another attorney or associate who does not understand your specific circumstances.

Q: What specifically will you do to help me? What is your strategy for my case?

A: Will the attorney complete and submit all of the paperwork on your behalf? Will they oversee the other administrative work essential to your case? Will they be available to attend interviews and court hearings with you? You want to make sure that the attorney will guide you through every step of the process.

Q: Do you have references or former clients I can talk to?

A: Talking to an attorney’s past clients can give you valuable insight into the attorney’s work and dedication.

Tips for Finding the Right Immigration Attorney for You

Look for Experience

The more experience an attorney has, the better they will know the immigration system and how it works. You want to find an attorney who knows the ins and outs of the field.

Build a Relationship with your Attorney

The better your attorney knows you, the better they will be able to help you. You need to be comfortable with their work style and build trust.

Check Credentials

There are many immigration attorneys who may not be qualified to take on your case. Be sure to research their background, as you will essentially be placing your future in their hands.

Do Not Bargain Hunt

Do not blindly choose an immigration lawyer based on low rates. It is better to spend extra money on a quality lawyer than to risk wasting months of a delayed or rejected application. Interview multiple immigration lawyers and compare their rates before you make a decision to see which one is the best fit.

Get a Trusted Referral

Word-of-mouth referrals are the best to consider, as you can learn firsthand about the kind of experience others have had when working with a particular immigration attorney.

How to Prepare to Meet with an Immigration Attorney

Prepare Relevant Information

The attorney may send you a questionnaire or form asking for basic information like your full name, address, phone number, and employer’s name. Fill it out to the best of your ability and bring it with you to the meeting.

Write Down Any Dates or Events Important to Your Case

Include as many facts and details as you can remember and the names of anyone who might have information that could help your case.

Make Copies of Important Immigration-Related Documents

For instance, your birth certificate, visa applications you’ve completed, letters from the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, and any documents you were given when you entered the United States are all likely to be relevant or required as part of a future application.

Organize Everything in a Folder or Envelope

This helps make sure you don’t lose or forget anything, and shows your attorney that you are serious about your case.

Do Some Research on your Own

This can help you and your lawyer have a meaningful discussion. It is effective to have a brief understanding of your case before your meeting, because then you will have a better idea of what to ask the immigration lawyer.

Red Flags to Look Out For

There are many red flags you should look out for when searching for an immigration attorney. Try to avoid attorneys who are too eager to take your case. If they accept your case over the phone without knowing any or all of the facts, that might be a sign that they are not dedicated to their practice. Also try to avoid attorneys who guarantee 100% success, because that can be a negative sign about their intentions, as they know that you might be getting desperate and are unfamiliar with the situation. If attorneys give unethical advice and make illegal offers, do not hire them. Getting into legal trouble is the last thing you need while you are trying to immigrate to the United States.

Contact Eric Price Today!

We encourage you to schedule a free consultation with us today! Contact Attorney Eric Price to get professional assistance in your immigration matters!

What is Family-Based Immigration & The Family Reunification Program?

  • a couple of weeks ago
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What is the Family Reunification Program?

The family reunification program is the visa program through which immigrants who are legal residents or green card holders can petition to have their relatives join them in the United States. Visas are granted according to the family tree, resulting in family-based migration. Some politicians refer to this process as the chain migration program, claiming that extended immigrant families can grow to the point where there is no regard for who is entering. However, there are restrictions in place to prevent the overflow that critics fear. The family reunification program is crucial in providing those separated from their loved ones with an opportunity to reunite and live together.

How Does the Family Reunification Program Work?

Immigration law offers two lanes for obtaining family based green cards. Both native-born and naturalized citizens can sponsor their immediate relatives including spouses, minor children, and parents without any annual caps. Citizens can also sponsor preference relatives or siblings and adult children (along with their spouses and grandchildren) under yearly limits. Current green card holders can sponsor their spouses, minor children, and unmarried adult children, but again, are subject to annual caps.

Sponsorship refers to the process during which the U.S. citizen or current green card holder must file a petition with Immigration Services on their relative’s behalf to document that there is a qualifying family relationship present. To obtain the family based green card, the relative must either apply outside of the U.S. for an immigration visa (which grants a green card after entry), or, if they are already in the country and eligible, they can apply to “adjust status” to a green card. This requires the family member who is the beneficiary of the petition to prove they are “admissible” to the United States as an immigrant. “Admissibility” is demonstrated through various criminal and background checks, proof of ability to support themselves, no disqualifying medical conditions, and no previous violations of immigration law.

Is the Family Reunification Program at Risk?

President Trump, since he took office, has voiced his stance on and acted upon cutting back on immigration. One of the reforms that he has championed most vigorously in recent months is switching from chain migration to a system of merit-based immigration. Under this proposed system, a team of elite economic experts would analyze the types of skilled laborers corporate America needs most of and then develop admissions criteria to select for such workers. This would replace the current process of ordinary Americans selecting immigrants based on familial ties.

What started from hateful words is becoming the harsh reality as seen through Trump’s “zero-tolerance” policy and the separation of thousands of children from their parents at the border. The future of family reunification immigration is now more at risk and uncertain than ever. If you are hoping to reunite your family, you need to act as soon as possible before the window of opportunity closes and the law changes. Attorney Eric Price is here to support you through what may seem like a daunting task but can be tackled successfully with the right resources and attention.

A Family Member of Mine Might Qualify. What Next?

If you have a family member who you believe might qualify for family-based immigration, reach out to a licensed attorney to guide you. There are many people who run businesses based on filling out immigration applications, but they do not have knowledge of the law. It is crucial to hire someone who possesses expert legal knowledge, because the application process can be very confusing. You only get one chance to file for a family based green card, so it must be done correctly and thoroughly the first time. Get trusted referrals, ask for references, and remember to build a relationship with your attorney.

Contact Attorney Eric Price Today!

Schedule a free consultation today! Contact Attorney Eric Price to ensure that your family won’t be adversely impacted by changes to chain migration law.

What is Political Asylum and How Do You Apply for It?

  • a couple of weeks ago
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What is Political Asylum?

Asylum is granted to immigrants already in the United States who are unable or unwilling to return to their home country due to persecution or a well-founded fear of persecution. The basis for political asylum are if a person will be persecuted due to their race, religion, nationality, membership in a particular social group, and political opinion. Your fear of persecution must fall under one of these categories. If you are granted asylum, you will be allowed to live and work in the United States and apply for permanent resident status one year after your application is approved.

Asylum can be “affirmative” or “defensive.” With affirmative asylum, you apply on your own initiative. With defensive asylum, you apply once you are in custody of the United States. Defensive asylum is a method to prevent your removal from the United States.

Asylum status and refugee status are closely related. They differ only in the place where a person can ask for the status; asylum must be applied for within the United States, and refugees must apply outside of the United States. Read ahead for more information on how to file for asylum.

How to Apply for Political Asylum

Step 1: Find a lawyer and understand asylum

To make the strongest case, you will want to meet with an immigration attorney who can advise you. You have the right to bring a lawyer to your asylum interview and any subsequent immigration proceedings. Asylum is a benefit that allows certain immigrants to remain lawfully in the United States for an indefinite amount of time.

Step 2: Check if you are eligible

To be eligible for asylum, you generally must already be physically present or arriving in the United States. You must have suffered from or had the fear of suffering from persecution based on either race, religion, nationality, membership in a particular social group, or political opinion.

Step 3: Understand who you can include in your application

For affirmative asylum, you may include your spouse and an unmarried child under the age of 21 in your application. If the child is 21 or older, they would have to apply for and be granted asylum. If you are a minor, then you may apply for asylum yourself.

Step 4: Apply within the deadline

You must submit an application for asylum within one year of arriving in the United States, unless there has been a material change of circumstances. For example, if your home country suddenly has a war in which your ethnic group is being targeted, then you could claim that circumstances have changed which now warrants your application for asylum.

Step 5: Confirm that you’re not barred from applying

Bars include conviction of a serious crime (which includes aggravated felonies), committing a serious nonpolitical crime outside of the United States, posing a danger to the security of the United States, and being already firmly resettled in another country before arriving in the United States.

Step 6: Corroborate the persecution

When you submit your asylum application, you must present evidence that shows the general conditions in the country you are fleeing as well as any specific facts that you are relying on in your claim.

Step 7: Gather photographs and immigration documents

Along with your application, you must submit a passport-sized photo of yourself and each family member included in your application. You should also make three copies of all passports or other travel documents like arrival-departure records or other immigration documents. Any documents that corroborates your fear of returning must be included.

Step 8: Collect supplementary family information

If you are including family members in your application, then you must submit one additional copy of the application for each family member. You also need documentary evidence that establishes the family relationship.

Can an Asylum Seeker Apply for a Work Permit?

If you are granted asylum, you are instantly eligible to stay n the U.S as an Asylee. However, this may not happen for weeks, months, or even years. In the meantime, if you are an asylum applicant, you may be able to obtain work authorization if 150 days have passed since you filed your application and there has been no decision on your case from USCIS or the immigration judge.

What to Look for in an Asylum Lawyer

Applying for asylum can be a complicated and daunting process. Having an asylum lawyer by your side can ease your stress, but also give you an increased chance of getting your application approved. A good asylum lawyer is an expert in this field, and therefore they will ensure that your application is as strong as it can possibly be. When searching for an asylum lawyer, be sure to check their credentials and ask for references, as you will be placing your trust and future in their hands. Also start building a relationship with your attorney starting from your first meeting, because the better they understand you and your circumstances, the better they will be able to help you with your specific case.

Contact Eric Price Today!

Do you think you may qualify for political asylum? Contact Eric Price today for a free consultation and let’s find out!

How to Stop or Appeal a Deportation Order

  • a few months ago
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Receiving a deportation order from United States can be a devastating event. However, such an order does not mean your immigration case has come to an end. Depending on the circumstances of your case, there are ways to challenge a deportation order and stay in the United States. The following post will teach you how to revoke a deportation order by determining whether you have grounds to appeal or challenge the order and getting assistance from an immigration attorney.

What is the Deportation Order Process?

A deportation order occurs as a result of an adverse decision entered by a judge on an immigration case. A deportation order will typically be entered after the applicant has presented his or her case in court. If you disagree with the decision of the immigration judge, you have the right to appeal to the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA) for relief. Types of relief at this stage in the process include discretionary relief, cancellation of removal, asylum, voluntary departure, and administrative relief. To be considered, an appeal must be filled within 30 days from the date that it was issued by the court.

Determining if You Can Appeal

There must be a legitimate reason to appeal a deportation order. The bases on which an applicant may file an appeal are outlined below.

Motion to Reopen in Absentia Decision

If your deportation is based on the fact that you didn’t appear at your hearing, you may file a motion to reopen to lift the in-absentia order. You will automatically and immediately get a “stay of deportation” by filing a motion to reopen the case. The stay will last at least as long as it takes the judge to determine whether or not to reopen your case. If the judge grants the motion to reopen, you can’t be deported while the case is going on.

Motion to Reopen due to Changed Circumstances

As the name suggests, if your personal circumstances have changed since your court decision, you may be able to reopen your case. A common example of this is changed country conditions. If conditions in your home country have turned hostile and therefore you feel as if it is unsafe to return, you could be eligible to reopen your case under a changed circumstances argument.

New Facts or Evidence

If new information has been discovered, you might be eligible to reopen and have your case heard based on the new facts or evidence. The court will consider the new evidence in relation to the type of relief you have submitted for.

How to File an Appeal

The first step in filing for an appeal is to complete a Notice of Appeal (Form EOIR-26) and provide a copy of it to the attorney who represented the United States government at your hearings. You must advise the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA) that you did this by including a “Proof of Service.” Form EOIR-26 asks you whether you plan to file an additional written brief or statement later, and it is highly recommended that you do so with your attorney’s assistance. There is a filing fee of $110.00 that must be paid by a check with your name and alien number on it made out to “United States Department of Justice.” After receiving your Notice of Appeal, BIA will send you a deadline for submitting your brief.

Get Help from an Immigration Lawyer

Working towards getting a revocation of your deportation order requires adherence to strict deadlines and expert knowledge of the inner-workings of the law. It is extremely important to hire an immigration attorney who is educated on how to appeal a deportation order, because not only can the process be difficult and complex, but it can also result in your removal from the United States. Check credentials and get reliable references before hiring, and be sure to develop a relationship with your attorney!

Contact Attorney Eric Price Today!

We encourage you to schedule a free consultation today! Contact Attorney Eric Price to get professional assistance in stopping your deportation order!

What is a Sanctuary City?

  • a few months ago
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A sanctuary city or state is a jurisdiction wherein by law, state funds are reserved for state affairs and not used to enforce federal immigration laws. The power to regulate immigration is reserved to the federal government, as such sanctuary laws specify how state institutions, like the police force and the courts will act when dealing with a non-citizen and the extent of federal collaboration in immigration matters. When referring to a sanctuary city or sanctuary state many individuals automatically assume it means that within those jurisdictions it creates safe cities for illegal immigrants with criminal backgrounds. However, this is far from what a sanctuary city or state means. Immigration sanctuary cities or states refer to jurisdictions wherein by law, state funds are not used to enforce federal immigration laws.

How do Sanctuary Cities Work?

Every immigration sanctuary city or sanctuary state works within their own set of laws, as established by their jurisdictions. However, generally sanctuary cities in the U.S. allow for general detention of a non-citizen to the full extent of the state laws, but will refrain from dealing with immigration related matters. For example, a non-citizen is passing through a DUI-checkpoint where police are stopping drivers to check for signs of intoxication. A non-citizen, if stopped, in this scenario will be asked the same questions as any other driver and no inquiry will be made into their legal status. The police and courts in general would treat all individuals in their cities and states equally before the law without regard to immigration status. In effect, the sanctuary city in the U.S. would create a safe-space for immigrants to live, as opposed to a place where individuals will be targeted for being immigrants.

Benefits of Sanctuary Cities

Immigration sanctuary cities and states bring about many benefits, not only for non-citizens but for the jurisdictions and their residents. Sanctuary laws prevent undocumented individuals and their mixed status families from going underground, shielding cooperation with law enforcement and our state’s institutions as a whole. To foster a safe environment of collaboration and cooperation within the state’s institutions creates a safer and more functioning society.

Benefits for the Police

Immigration sanctuary cities benefit the police force as they can focus their work only on enforcing state laws and not the federal immigration laws. This creates an atmosphere of trust and cooperation within society and fosters an environment of participation as it creates a safe-space for non-citizens.

Benefits for the City

The city benefits from sanctuary laws in many ways. There are studies that show that immigration sanctuary cities have less crime. Additionally, because sanctuary cities in the U.S. foster an environment of less targeting of non-citizens, it eliminates that element of hiding and living under the shadows, creating a larger work force and in effect a stronger economy.

Benefits for Immigrants

The benefits for non-citizens are immense when they live in a sanctuary city or state. Because the state focuses on state-affairs, it removes that element of immigration enforcement and creates a safer society for immigrants. The fear of being profiled and targeted is less as non-citizens participate in state affairs freely.

Sanctuary Cities and the Trump Administration

The Trump administration is vehemently opposed to Sanctuary cities and state’s like California. In the past, the Trump administration has threatened sanctuary cities in the U.S and states with stripping federal funding. Although the courts have disagreed with placing a contingency on providing federal funds to immigration sanctuary cities, they have not stopped there. The Trump administration is currently suing the state of California for establishing a sanctuary state attempting the abridge the powers of the state and their rights. Their goal is to deport all immigrants without regards to enforcement priorities, and Sanctuary cities in the U.S. are a barrier to that plan.

What is Immigration Detention?

  • a few months ago
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Immigration Detention is the process by which a non-citizen is identified, apprehended and processed into immigration custody through the restriction of their liberty.

Immigration detention in the U.S. stems back to the First World War where Ellis Island was used as an immigration detention center due to the influx of immigrants into the U.S. Notably, the U.S. also used internment camps at the height of the Second World War to detain Japanese- American in less than desirable immigration detention center conditions.

However, the birth of what are immigration detention centers currently began in the 1980’s during the migration of Cubans and Haitians to the U.S. Currently, ICE immigration detention and immigration centers have risen dramatically.

Subject to some discretion, the immigration laws call for mandatory detention of all arriving non-immigrants into the country, consequently leading to higher rates of ICE immigration detention and the proliferation of more detention centers.

Due to the growing violence in Mexico and Central America, immigration into the U.S. is on the rise. As a result, immigration detention centers are used to house the influx of immigrants and process their immigration cases.

What to Expect When Being Detained at an Immigration Detention Center

A non-citizen must know what to expect when subjected to ICE immigration detention within an immigration detention center. What are immigration detention centers like?

First, it is important to know that women and men are housed separately to adapt to the non-citizen’s gender specific needs within the immigration detention center conditions. An immigration detention center is similar to, if not equal to the conditions of a jail or prison.

Detainees are often times separated into violent and non-violent offenders within the immigration detention center for the security and protection of all housed in the facility. The length of detention of each detainee within the facility varies, depending on the fact-specific circumstances surrounding the individuals case.

The immigration detention center conditions are often times reported as sub-par although it fluctuates from facility to facility, however, there have been reported violations of detainee’s rights.

Detainees must report any issues within the immigration detention center including access to medical care, children’s needs, injuries at the detention center, violence and any other relevant concerns.

Immigration detention centers should grant detainees access to counsel and visitation rights for family members, however all facilities have their own rules and regulations, as such, information on the specific immigration detention center must be reviewed on a facility by facility basis.

What to Do if You Are Sent to Immigration Detention

When an individual is in ICE immigration detention the first step is to know your rights. Most of the steps to protect yourself must be taken before arriving at the immigration detention center.

First, while being processed to go into an immigration detention center, you have the right to remain silent and assert your right to counsel. When you are in ICE immigration detention you should seek counsel to analyze your case and determine what your rights are while in ICE immigration detention.

This is particularly important as it will determine if you have the right to a bond with ICE or a bond hearing before the Immigration Judge. To be able to apply for a bond is key to the strategy behind the immigration case as a whole, as it guarantees, if granted, that the individual will not be subject to what are immigration detention center prolonged detention times.

If you do not have the right to a bond, you must complete your case within the immigration detention center before an Immigration Judge under immigration detention center conditions.

Victims of Violent Crimes Might Be Eligible for Permanent Residencies

  • last year
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The purpose of a U-Visa is to help undocumented immigrants, spouses or their children who have been victims of violent crimes inside the United States and cooperate with the investigation, obtain their residency. Once the U-Visa is granted, you can then apply for a green card and become a permanent resident.

This visa was created to protect the victims of different crimes including abduction, extortion, false imprisonment and domestic violence. In some cases the victim’s previous deportation or minor crimes can be pardoned with the visa.

There are different steps for obtaining your residency through a U-Visa, these are the main ones:

  1. You must request the police report if you don’t have it already.
  2. The U-Visa certification and police report must be sent to the same police station where you obtained the report. The certification must be signed and returned to you.
  3. Submit the signed U-Visa certification to USCIS to apply for your permanent residency.

U-Visa cases are very unique and vary from one person to another. Our attorneys are trained to carefully listen, gather the necessary information and plan a solution catered to your unique case. Schedule a free consultation with our office and our team will help you determine if your case qualifies for a U-Visa or a different type of visa.

After Seven Lawyers Told Her She Couldn’t, Maria Galan Cruz Got Her Residency

  • last year
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Nothing makes us happier than the satisfaction of our clients after obtaining their residency. After struggling to find the right attorney, Maria Galan Cruz booked a free consultation with our office and got her green card.

Maria has a veteran son who served in the military. This makes her eligible for residency through the Parole in Place program, which allows for immediate family of any active personnel or veterans in the Navy, Army, Marines or Air Force of the United States to obtain their residency.

None of the seven attorneys she previously visited knew about the Parole in Place program, leaving Maria discouraged when she scheduled a free consultation with us. At that time, she just wanted to obtain a work permit. However, our team knew immediately that she qualified for more and we quickly began working on her case.

Less than six months later, Maria got her green card and is now able to legally reside in the United States. Don’t be discouraged by what other attorneys say and book a free consultation to have our team determine your true eligibility.

 

Green Cards for Family of U.S. Military

  • last year
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Parole in Place is a program designed to allow non-citizen immediate family members of the United States military to apply for a green card without having to leave the country. This program applies to immediate family of any active personnel or veterans in the Navy, Army, Marines or Air Force of the United States.

A major benefit of the Parole in Place program is that you don’t have to leave the country to apply, even if you entered unlawfully. This helps the family avoid high financial costs and separation from applying for a green card outside of the United States. The program also allows for anybody who has been detained at the border or deported to qualify for a green card.

The program requires a Family Petition, Parole in Place Application and Status Adjustment to be submitted to the government. The application process can be long, but you can obtain a work permit and legally work in the United States during this time.

Our lawyers can help you obtain a green card through this program, just like we did with Maria Galan Cruz, who came to us after seven lawyers told her no. Schedule your free consultation and find out if you qualify for the Parole in Place program.

Maria Molina free and safe in the United States after deportation

  • a couple of years ago
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Thanks to the attorney Eric Price, María Molina – Ávalos is free after two years of being incarcerated in an ICE Detention Center in Arizona, away from her husband, José, and their two children, Abraham and Stephanie.

A Michoacán, Mexico native, María was unfairly deported from Los Angeles to Tijuana in a matter of hours in 2013. Without any other option, she returned to her hometown where she went through an extortion nightmare as she fell victim of the self-proclaimed “sicarios.”

Forced by the fear of being attacked or that something happened to her family, she returned to the United States and gave herself up as a political refugee in a San Isidro migration checkpoint.

However, the bureaucracy of the migratory system sent her all the way to Arizona, which complicated her situation. Besides the obstacles from judges and prosecutors, the attorney Eric Price fought against them for almost two years until she was free and reunited safe and sound with her family.

Currently, María is at home with Political Asylum making up for the time lost with her family, friends and congregation.

“What I went through, I don’t wish to anybody… I still don’t know why I had to go through all of that when I have never hurt anybody,” María assures, who formed a prayer group while in the ICE Detention Center.

“Every day I asked myself the same, what did I do to deserve this punishment? I was away from my children, my husband and my home…”

The answer is still in the air, a good, hardworking and honest woman went through an unfair situation, even when she could give up and accept another deportation to return freely to Mexico, María Molina – Ávalos stood strong “because I had so much faith that the attorney Eric Price would take me out from where I was and return me to my home in California,” she affirms.

“The attorney Eric never left my side, it was really hard for me and my husband, but we saw how he fought during those two years until he achieved my freedom.”

María Molina’s story is so moving that it has been presented in news stations like Univision – San Diego and Estrella TV – Los Angeles. They both talked about the labor of the attorney Eric Price in favor of the Hispanic community and María Molina in particular. Highlighting how with his experience and knowledge in migratory law he managed to help people with what seems like impossible migratory cases.