This webinar is intended for legal service providers who are new to the area of family-based immigration and will focus on the basics of the family visa petition. We will cover which relatives can qualify for family-based immigration and how they fit and move around the preference categories with events such as marriage, divorce or the naturalization petitioner. We will also review how priority dates are established, lost and recaptured, as well as the role of the visa bulletin and what happens when the visa availability date advances or regresses. We will review the various ways in which a family visa petition may get revoked and we will review the rules applying to widows and other beneficiaries when the qualifying relative dies. The discussion will include an overview of the Child Status Protection Act.
Presenter: Lourdes Martinez, ILRC Staff Attorney
Lourdes, an immigrant herself, spent her childhood in central Mexico before moving with her family to the United States. Before joining ILRC, she worked as an immigration attorney at the Tahirih Justice Center in the DC metropolitan area, where she represented immigrant women and girls survivors of gender-based violence on immigration matters. She obtained her Bachelor of Arts from Rice University and her Juris Doctor from the George Washington University Law School in Washington, DC, where she was awarded the JB & Maurice Shapiro Public Service Fellowship for her dedication to public interest law. While in law school, she worked on international human rights litigation involving cases from Mexico, Central America and the Caribbean both, with the International Human Rights Clinic at GWU and as a law clerk with the Center for Justice and International Law in San Jose, Costa Rica. She also worked with the Capital Area Immigrants' Rights Coalition, providing legal services and Know Your Rights presentations for immigrant detainees in Virginia. Finally, she spent a year with the Public Defender Service of Washington, DC, directly representing criminal defendants before the U.S. Parole Commission and drafting briefs for criminal court. Lourdes began her career in immigration law as a paralegal at Tindall & Foster, PC in Houston, Texas. She is fluent in Spanish and French.
Moderator: Ann Block, AOD Contract Attorney
Ann is certified as a Specialist in Immigration and Nationality Law by the State Bar of California, Board of Legal Specialization, has been practicing immigration law for almost 25 years. She has chaired the State Bar Immigration & Nationality Law Advisory Commission, which writes and certifies the specialization examination for California attorneys, has taught immigration law and supervised the Immigration Clinic at McGeorge Law School, served as update editor for Immigration Laws & Crimes (West-NLG) and contributed updates for various ILRC publications. She is currently serving on a contract basis as an ILRC “Attorney of the Day” providing mentoring and technical assistance for immigration and criminal defense attorneys and nonprofits nationally. She also has a solo private practice in Davis, California and spends considerable time cheering and travelling as an itinerant “soccer mom.”