Immigration Law Blog


2015 Boston Immigration Law Scholarship Winner!

The Law Offices of Joshua L. Goldstein are pleased to announce that we have chosen Zulma Munoz as the 2015 winner of our Boston Immigration Law Scholarship! We were overwhelmed by the excellent applications we received for the scholarship, all of which evoked the struggles and challenges of the immigrant experience. Over 150 deserving students applied!

Ms. Munoz is the child of Mexican immigrants and was born in Oakland, California. She graduated from the University of California Berkeley in 2012 with a Bachelors of Arts in Sociology. She will be attending University of San Francisco School of Law in the fall of 2015.

Our office recognizes that the U.S. immigration process is stressful for families and can have traumatic outcomes that can impact a child’s potential to seek an education and succeed in the United States. As an office that specializes in family-based immigration and deportation defense, we’re dedicated to helping hard-working and ambitious immigrants and children of immigrants attain their goals for higher education. We are so happy to help Ms. Munoz achieve her dreams of attending law school and we know she will accomplish big things in her future!

Zulma Munoz’s Winning Essay

At an early age, I learned that education was a ticket out of poverty.  When my mother was seventeen, she and my father carried my brother across the border to the United States.  I was born three years later in Oakland, California.  At age two, my father died in a car accident.  When I was seven, my mother married a wonderful man and I was delighted to have a new father.Maya Immigration Scholarship Winner

I remember dreading adulthood because I believed it meant washing dishes for endless hours.  For twenty-five years, my father cleaned dishes as a utility worker.  Since my parents worked long hours, my mother desired to keep my brother and I away from the streets so she had us join a soccer team.  I soon realized that my teammates’ parents did not have jobs my parents did.  I also discovered something that I had never seen in my house: university diplomas.

Being a part of a team exposed me to the first injustice that would shape my desire to become an advocate.  I realized that low-income immigrant parents often suffered from unjust work situations.  The second injustice emerged in school with my older brother.  My teachers assured me that I could become a doctor, dentist, or lawyer, while my brother faced criticism from his teachers.  I was forced to comprehend why someone would be treated and live differently just because of where they were born.

When I was a freshman at UC Berkeley, officials arrested my brother for marking the streets with graffiti.  Within a week, the case was transferred to Immigration Court and my brother’s deportation followed closely thereafter.  The next few months and years of my life were dominated by court proceedings, translating for my parents at attorney consultations, and supporting the emotional well being of my mother and 11-year-old brother.

In many ways, I am privileged that my life’s circumstances taught me about the immigration, education, and labor systems in American because it motivated me to start my career early.  My brother’s case catapulted my knowledge and frustration with the legal system, so I decided to pursue a career through which I could influence the outcomes of individuals with similar stories.  Whether I was organizing students to journey to Washington DC to lobby for immigration reform or providing immigration relief to youth without legal citizenship, my mission was clear.

After my brother’s deportation, I was determined to ensure other families did not suffer as my family did.  Consequently, I dedicated myself to direct-service work and now have a strong working knowledge of immigration remedies, education reform, and about the systemic challenges underserved communities face that I bring with me to the law school.  I am committed to attaining my law degree in order to continue giving back to the communities, schools and families from which I come.  My journey demands that I engage in work I can believe in and becoming a lawyer will strengthen my ability to do so.

5 Things That You Need to Know About Your Master Calendar Hearing

A master calendar hearing, or MCH, is the first step in any legal action involving immigration matters. Typically, a MCH is the primary occurrence in an immigrant’s deportation hearing – if the U.S. government is trying to deport you, you’ll get a master calendar hearing.. If you’re an immigrant to the United States who will be attending your own master calendar hearing, here are five things you need to know:

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DOJ Lawyers and Possible Sanctions

In February of 2015, a federal judge blocked an executive immigration order, given by President Obama, that would have granted deportation stays to five million immigrants currently residing in the U.S. without proper documentation. What’s more, the immigration action would have also provided many of those same immigrants with the right to lawfully obtain permits to work.

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Immigrant Detainees Used as a Source of Cheap Labor in Boston Jail

In an egregious infraction of justice, immigrant detainees in Suffolk County, Massachusetts, may have been exploited for their labor. Now, one of the immigrant detainees, 40-year-old Anthony Whyte, is filing a class action lawsuit against Suffolk County Sheriff’s Department which states that he and other detainees should have been paid minimum wage for their labor over the past six years.

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Marriage Fraud: A Growing Problem in the U.S.

For some immigrants, the idea of marrying an American citizen to gain legal status within the U.S. is a tempting idea – some will even go so far as to commit marriage fraud. Marriage fraud is the act of engaging in a fraudulent marriage, usually by bribing an individual with money to get them to agree to the marriage, for the purpose of gaining U.S. lawful permanent residence. The following reviews what constitutes an authentic marriage in the U.S., and what the penalties for committing marriage fraud are. If you’re facing penalties for marriage fraud in Boston, the immigration attorneys at the Law Offices of Joshua L. Goldstein, P.C. can help.

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Deportation Updates

In 2014, unprecedented legislation on immigration reform was signed into law. The legislation, which was opposed by many, granted relief from deportation for more than four million undocumented immigrants living in the United States. As a result, those who support deportation have argued that Obama’s immigration policy is too soft, and that it doesn’t address the real problem. However, the number of illegal immigrants deported under the Obama administration suggests otherwise. If you’re facing deportation in Boston, the attorneys at the Law Offices of Joshua L. Goldstein can help. Continue reading “Deportation Updates”