Friday, July 31, 2015

Are you eligible for a U Visa?

Since I began practicing immigration law, I have had the good fortune of helping a number of good, hardworking individuals (and some of their family members) obtain a U visa. The U Visa was created to encourage undocumented individuals to come forward when they are the victim of a qualifying crime, have suffered physical or mental damage, and they have information that might be helpful to that criminal investigation.  

This visa's origins began in 2000 as part of the Violence Against Women Act, and currently 10,000 U visas are granted each year.  Qualifying crimes include domestic violence, felonious assault, and other felonies and serious crimes.  Certification is required from the police, prosecutor, or other certifying official that the individual has been helpful.  

The U visa can truly be an unexpected blessing and result of terrible circumstances for individuals seeking immigration status who normally have too many hurdles to obtain legal status.  With the U visa, a number of common deportable offenses such as unlawful entry into the US, attempted unlawful entry, using false documents, etc. can be "waived" or essentially forgiven.  If approved, the U visa applicant can receive legal status and work authorization for 4 years, and after 3 years can in fact apply for permanent residence.  Not only that, but derivative family members (including spouses) can also receive the same benefit and potentially permanent residence.

The U Visa is truly a small slice of humanity in the current immigration system.  If you were the victim of a serious crime and believe that you may qualify for a U Visa, please feel free to contact me to see if the U Visa is available for you and your family.  Good luck!

Friday, July 17, 2015

Introduction and Welcome!

Hello and welcome!  My name is William Yun.  I am an attorney, and I primarily practice immigration law as well as estate planning and litigation.  I am based out of Torrance, California but serve all of the Southern California area.  I received my law degree from University of California, Hastings College of the Law, and B.A. from U.C. Berkeley.

I started this blog to reach out to those interested in the latest immigration and estate planning related news.  The laws change frequently and can be complicated, so hopefully I can help with some useful information as you navigate your immigration journey or as you learn more about estate planning.

To start, I thought I would keep it simple and start with the basics.  Although I have been fortunate to help many individuals and families with a variety of immigration cases, most frequently I am asked about the immigration and/or adjustment of status process for immediate relatives of U.S. citizens. I believe the best client is an informed and involved client, so I would direct you to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services' (USCIS) website.  USCIS's website has a wealth of information which can be straightforward for some to navigate, but understandably daunting to others.  No matter what category you fall under, it never hurts to take a look at the primary source and be generally informed. It's also important that you don't go to websites pretending to be USCIS - pay close attention to the website address (USCIS's website will always include ".gov" - if not, you are probably looking at a business website trying to imitate USCIS).  Below is the direct link to the USCIS page which has general information about family members of US Citizens and what processes are available for those family members to receive immigration benefits.

If you have any questions or want to talk about the immigration process for you or your family member, please feel free to contact me at or 323-863-3414.  Best of luck!