Winning an immigration case – for some it might make the difference between life and death!

Article on Shah Peerally

Having practiced law for several years now, I have noticed that in most cases, a successful outcome is indispensable. Of course, as a lawyer I cannot guarantee any success to any client, however, it is imperative that an attorney assesses the case in the best light and try to find the best outcome for his/her clients. My practice deals in immigration law and debt settlement.  For the purpose of this article, I will limit my analysis to immigration law.


While winning is not everything in life, when it comes to immigration law, winning might just be everything especially in immigration cases. In fact, not winning might result in deportation and possibly a permanent ban from the United States.  In situations when a client fears for his/her life and is mistakenly deported, the result can be catastrophic.   Imagine that someone is sent back the home country – a very hostile country which is actually torturing or killing people belonging to this person’s class (religious, political, sexual orientation or gender). Nobody can really guess what might happen to this person especially if the country finds out this person has sought an asylum in another country.   (Note that asylums are highly confidential and the US government makes sure that this is never disclosed. In fact, a person might obtain asylum solely based on this disclosure.).   As an attorney, it becomes a duty to protect the interest of this person.   As such, a good attorney needs to look into all the avenues to keep the client in thse United States not limited to an asylum only.   It becomes actually a ‘matter of life or death’.

There is no ‘magic solution’ to winning a case. However, there are few things that can make the difference between winning and losing:

The experience of the attorney.
There are many good attorneys/lawyers out there, yet no everybody practices all the areas of law. When it comes to immigration, it is imperative that the attorney has some practical experience on the matter.   Our law firm has been practicing immigration law for years now and we have successfully handled more than 1200 cases, yet we are faced with challenges on a daily basis.  The reason is that immigration law is very complicated, in fact one of the most complicated areas of law, it is constantly changing and only a “little knowledge” can be very harmful.  If someone is not “up to speed” on the changes, there are crucial mistakes made that can result in a denial for your client and ultimately a bar from ever entering or getting any sort of immigration benefit.

Although you have a great attorney, if the attorney or you are not prepared for your case, the chances of winning is highly diminished. You need to realize that you have a lot at stake in your immigration matter, careful review of your case is a must. You should take the case seriously and collaborate with your lawyer to assist you.   I actually prepared a slide show on how you can help your lawyer help you, feel free to check it on

Knowing the law
One of the biggest mistakes that I see when clients come to our law firm is the ‘ignorance of the law’.  Either people are reading from forums or listening to friends, it is always wise to check with a good immigration attorney to make sure that you have the right solution for you. For example, some people will take an advance parole without realizing that they have overstayed for more than 180 days and leaving the country will result in a 3 year bar from the United States.   Unfortunately some of them have actually called the USCIS and this information was not disclosed to them. They left the country and could not come back unless they could file for a waiver. The truth is that the USCIS is not there to offer legal advices, and you take their information at your own risk.  Furthermore, ignorance of the law is not an excuse.

Make sure you are dealing with a real licensed lawyer
There are many non-licensed “immigration consultants”  offering their services for cheap or trying to help the immigrants to navigate the immigration laws.  Do not be fooled by them!  Unless a person is a licensed attorney or dealing with a non-profit organization, I will recommend staying far from them.   I have seen too many ‘horror stories’ on the matter.  Fortunately we are sometimes able to fix them but sometimes people are not so lucky!  It can also cost you a lot to fix the mistakes.

Winning an immigration case is one of the most gratifying feeling.  I am proud of my law firm on the quality of work the law firm has provided over the years.   The testimonials from our clients are witness to their joy and gratitude of what we have been able to accomplish for them.   The compensation as an immigration lawyer is relatively meager compared to the other areas of law, however the feeling of saving a person or a family from deportation as well as assisting them to stay in this United States is simply priceless.

Again, our law firm cannot guarantee success, yet if there is a little hope, we will not give up.   When it comes to immigration, the journey can be tough but the destination is sweet.  Over the years, I have realized that my life is actually a success because of the success of the numerous families I have helped during this period of time.   What better way to serve your community than to save this community from oppression and to obtain social justice for all.

Shah Peerally is an attorney licensed in California practicing immigration law and debt settlement. He has featured as an expert legal analyst for many TV networks such as NDTV, Times Now and Sitarree TV. Articles about Shah Peerally and his work have appeared on newspapers such as San Jose Mercury News, Oakland Tribune, US Fiji Times, Mauritius Le Quotidien, Movers & Shakers and other prominent international newspapers. His work has been commended by Congress women Nancy Pelosi and Barbara Lee.  He has a weekly radio show on KLOK 1170AM and frequently participates in legal clinics in churches, temples and mosques.


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Attorney Shah Peerally also deals in debt settlement. For more information call us on 510.742.5887 and visit us on

Information provided above is for educational purposes only.  One should not act or refrain to act solely based on the information provided.  You should consult an attorney to assess your case before proceeding.

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Disclaimer: The views expressed on this website are not necessarily those of Shah Peerally or his law firms. No attorney client relationship is created by reading any message or articles posted on this blog.