Justice for our Neighbors Reports Outcomes

Editor Note: Last January The Baldwin Center invited Justice for Our Neighbors- Southeast Michigan (JFON-SEMI) to provide an immigration legal clinic once a month here at the Baldwin Center.  Below is a report from their lead attorney.

Dear JFON-SEMI Community,

We have had a rather exciting month.  Through our three community clinics we served 12 new clients from 9 different countries this month.  Of the 12 new clients, all 12 received free consultations on their immigration cases, 3 were advised of their rights in the United States, and 9 will be receiving follow-up assistance including assistance with naturalization for one and obtaining permanent residency for another.  Since January 2010, we have served 137 clients (including 11 children) from 44 different countries around the world.

Additionally, we had successful outcomes for two of our cases this past month.

The first was a husband and wife who came to us after a failed attempt to gain permanent residency based on marriage to a U.S. Citizen.  This couple had prepared the initial application together without the assistance of an immigration attorney, the couple made a minor error and as a result the application was denied.  We refiled the application and this past week the non-U.S. Citizen spouse was granted permanent residency and has received her “Green Card.”

Our other success had to do with a client who we had been assisting who had been residing in a domestic violence shelter with her child.  This woman had been battered and subjected to extreme cruelty by her U.S. Citizen spouse.  We applied for relief for this client under the Violence Against Women Act, as the battered spouse of a U.S. Citizen.  Though processing times are somewhat slow for this form of relief, we were able to expedite this client’s process to better help her get back on her feet and out of the shelter.  This month, our client’s application was approved, she was granted permanent residency and received her Green Card.  Now local social service agencies are able to better assist her in finding housing and moving out of the shelter.

Once again, thank you for your ongoing support.


Ellie Levine

Regional Attorney

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