BARRY LIEBER – Biography
I have been practicing immigration law since 1993. Actually, my goal when I was in law school when I graduated in 1989 was to be an immigration lawyer in Miami. I got a bit sidetracked by taking a job with the New York City Department of Investigation where I worked from 1989 to 1993. In that job, I investigated fraud and corruption within the New York City government, which was interesting, but I still had this desire to do immigration law.
My interest in immigration started even before I was in law school. Back when I was in high school, I used to be friends with the foreign exchange students, some of whom had immigration issues. This interest lasted through college when I spent time in South America and got asked a lot of questions by people there about how to legally move to the U.S. When I realized that I couldn’t answer their questions, I decided to learn something about it in law school
In law school, the class on immigration law was taught by a great professor – John Scanlan- and was one class which I looked forward to attending and didn’t want to end. It was fascinating to me to learn the history of immigration laws and regulations, how they fit into the constitutional structure of the U.S., and the rights of non-citizens under the constitution. When I elected to do a thesis in my last year of law school I went to Professor Scanlan and asked him what is a hot issue in immigration right now that I can write about. He told me that the hot topic (this was 1989) was the legal status of Soviet Jews and whether they should be considered refugees. I decided to write about that issue and concluded that they were, in fact, refugees, even though they had a safe haven in Israel. I submitted the paper to a legal writing contest sponsored by the National Jewish Law Students Association and won first price, which was a trip to Israel.
Since practicing immigration law, I have been a member of AILA (the American Immigration Lawyers Association) and was on the pro-bono committee of the South Florida Chapter. I have also been a panelist for ILW.com, where I conducted weekly question and answer sessions online.
I’ve had experience with a wide variety of issues in immigration, from the simplest of naturalization cases to complex federal litigation. If I had to say I specialize in any area of immigration, I would have to say it is in four areas; business, artist visas, federal litigation and fraud waivers. However, I practice in all areas of immigration law.
One good thing about being a small firm is that I am able to give individual attention to all of my clients. I know what is going on in all of the cases and don’t pass them off to paralegals. When a client calls or emails me, my policy is to return the call or email within 24 hours. Even if I’m on vacation, I attempt to contact clients within a short period and am never completely out of touch. I think clients appreciate that when they call the office, they get to speak to the lawyer, rather than a secretary or paralegal who may not be able to properly answer their questions.
Another plus is that I am bilingual in Spanish and English. There are lots of lawyers who have bilingual staff, but I am able to personally talk to my clients without the need of an interpreter. I may have a gringo accent, but I can communicate nevertheless.
If you want to know more, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or call at 305-374-3860.