CLE Training: Practice Tips for Representing Immigrant Clients with Criminal System Contacts in Affirmative Applications

Contact with the criminal legal system can create unique risks and complications for an immigrant client. The Immigrant Defense Project hotline provides individualized analysis of the effect of any contact with the criminal legal system on a person’s immigration status, and gives clear, accurate, individualized advice to legal service providers by serving as crim-imm experts. This training is intended to provide information to attorneys, DOJ accredited representatives, and their support staff on how to analyze a case where a client has had contact with police and the criminal court system. The training will go step-by-step through two hypothetical client cases, explaining how to analyze the effect of contact with the criminal system on a specific immigration application. Co-trainer Stephanie Lopez, Acting Managing Director at The Door, will share ways to deal with complex scenarios, including tips on how to prepare applications and prepare clients for interviews with USCIS.

What you will learn:

  • The law necessary to analyze the immigration consequences of a client’s criminal contact
  • Strategies for completing questions related to arrests and criminal court cases on immigration applications
  • Tips for responding to requests for evidence (RFEs) from USCIS
  • How to prepare a client to answer questions during USCIS interviews

Who should attend:

Immigration attorneys and advocates representing clients who may have had contact with the criminal legal system in New York City. This course is not open to individuals employed by local, state, or federal law enforcement agencies, including the Department of Homeland Security or by prosecutorial agencies including District Attorney’s Offices and the U.S. Department of Justice.


  • Em Puhl, Immigrant Defense Project, Senior Staff Attorney
  • Stephanie Lopez, The Door, Managing Attorney


Thursday, June 17th, 2021 – 3:00 pm – 5:00 pm (ET)

Note – This is an online event and will be held through the Zoom webinar platform.


Program is presented free of charge.
Registration will open on Thursday, May 20th, 2021
Registration close on Wednesday, June 16th, 2021

How to access a Zoom Webinar:

The Immigrant Defense Project requires all registrants to authenticate their profile in order to confirm the registrant’s identity. In order to attend a webinar hosted by the Immigrant Defense Project, please follow these instructions

Continuing Legal Education Credits:

This transitional/nontransitional course has been approved in accordance with the requirements of the New York State Continuing Legal Education Board for a maximum of 2 credit hours which can be applied toward the professional practice requirement. In order to receive CLE credit, individuals will be required to complete an attendance verification form and evaluation by July 2nd, 2021.

Additional Information:

  • This course is offered free of charge. 
  • Training will be held online through the Zoom webinar platform. You must register for this webinar training using an email address that is associated with a Zoom account. 
  • Individuals who are not present during the live training will not be eligible for the CLE credits.  
  • CLE certifications will be distributed by July 16th, 2021. 
  • Please send inquiries to [email protected]