31st Jul 2017
How Much Do Immigration Lawyers Cost?
Do you need an immigration attorney? As an immigrant or even as a legal permanent resident of the United States, the aid of a competent immigration legal counsel can be quite invaluable in securing your goals. In the case of deportation or other immigration-related legal issues, the representation of an attorney could be your saving grace and at the very least, ensures that you are competently represented and your case is heard fairly and judiciously.
With that said, you may not always want to hire the services of an immigration attorney. If you are not very rich for example, you may want to go through certain processes such as the green card application for permanent residency on your own. Of course, in case you are wholly unfamiliar with the application process and English is not your first language, then you would do well to hire the services of an immigration attorney.
Keep in mind that the USCIS rejects thousands of applications each year for insufficiency of content or lack of certain documentary evidence. You can never really tell whether your application is already sufficient unless you get the opinion of a qualified immigration lawyer. The worst part is that the application fees that you already paid are non-refundable just in case your application is rejected. This means that you will have to try again until you get it right. If you go by a trial and error process, you could end up paying more in time and money than you would have if you just went and sought the aid of an immigration attorney in your application in the first place.
Hourly Rate Or One-Time Fee For Your Immigration Lawyer
There are two ways that an attorney may wish to be paid. These are the hourly rate or a one-time flat rate. What kind of rates your lawyer charges should be one of the essential questions that you ask your prospective immigration lawyer among others. For certain types of services, a lawyer may choose to charge somewhere around $100-$300 an hour. These are the rates that you should expect from your lawyer. For a one-time 20-30 minute consultation, a lawyer can charge around $75-100.
For services, if you plan to contract a lawyer’s service for your immigration application for example, an immigration attorney will generally charge you about $375
How Much Can I Expect To Pay To Get My Green Card Without An Immigration Lawyer?
Without a lawyer, the basic fee for a green card application is only about $85, although your mileage may vary with the ever-changing face of immigration laws in the United States. With that said, there are various other fees such as biometrics that you will have to pay for. The USCIS website has more detailed information on these fees. Look for Form I-485 on the homepage of the USCIS and you will get a better idea of how much you can expect to pay. Over-all, the total fees usually accrue to be over $1000. You will have to add on your lawyer’s fees to this amount if you plan to hire an immigration attorney. Of course, the alternative might be a failed application and that means paying over $1000 all over again for another try. For your peace of mind and to ensure that no elementary mistakes are made during the application, it is best to hire an immigration lawyer.
What About The Filing Fee For My immigration Papers?
If you are filing a Form I-130 for yourself or a family member, the current rate is set at $420 at the time that this article was written. Each individual family member will need a separate Form I-130 and thus, you will have to pay the same amount each time.