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Urgent and Available Cases

NIJC's network of pro bono attorneys represent asylum seekers, unaccompanied immigrant children, survivors of domestic abuse and low-income individuals applying for naturalization. NIJC screens all cases to ensure individuals are eligible for relief and to prioritize individuals and families who lack the private resources needed to obtain representation elsewhere.

NIJC pro bono attorneys receive training before taking on their first case, and ongoing technical assistance and case support as necessary throughout the life of each case.

Asylum: A Nicaraguan family seeks asylum based on political opinion

P. and her family speak Spanish and live in WI

P. and her husband were members of an opposition political party. In early 2019, police came to their home and demanded they remove an opposition flag, searched their home, and warned them to stop supporting the opposition. The police returned a few weeks later and attempted to detain P.  Terrified, the family went into hiding and then fled seeking protection in the U.S. P.'s children are in unique procedural postures.

Asylum: A family seeks protection based on religious persecution in India.

L. her husband and three children speak English and live in Chicago, IL.

A group of Hindu religious extremists hijacked the bus and tried to force L. to say Hindu prayers.  When L., who is Muslim, refused, the hijackers pulled L.’s scarf off her head. Subsequently, members of the same Hindu extremist group broke into L.’s home, beat L. and her son, P, targeted L.’s husband, K., and threatened the whole family with death multiple times.  L. reported the threats to the police on more than one occasion, but the police did not protect them. Fearing for their lives, the family fled to the United States. NIJC timely filed the family’s asylum applications with USCIS in December 2020.  All affidavits and supporting materials will be due one week prior to their interview at the asylum office.

SIJS: A 17-year-old from Guatemala has only months left to seek protection after years of abuse

P. speaks Spanish and lives in the western suburbs of Chicago

P’s parents forced her to maintain the family house, and if P did not, she was physically abused. When P turned 12 years old her parents told her to stop going to school and to find work because her family would no longer support her. At her work away from her home, P. was subject to frequent sexual assaults. P left Guatemala to live with her sister and arrived in the US in December 2019. There is no one in Guatemala who could care for, or protect P. A pro bono attorney will need to file a guardianship case on behalf of P’s sister, and obtain an order for guardianship finding that P’s reunification with both parents is not viable due to abuse and neglect, and that it is not in P’s best interest to return to Guatemala. This order must be obtained prior to P’s 18th birthday in September of 2021.

"I cannot emphasize how rewarding, challenging and important my work with the National Immigrant Justice Center has been to date. For nearly a year, I have had the privilege of representing a Nicaraguan transgender woman in her immigration proceedings...I have drafted and filed over 10 motions, appeared for hearings on numerous occasions and learned to navigate the immigration court system. As a member of the bar and an immigrant myself, I... would encourage you to get involved."
Saghar Esfandiarifard, Kirkland & Ellis LLP
 

Pro Bono Spotlight

Thanks to the support of more than 1,850 pro bono attorneys from the nation's leading law firms, NIJC has made critical advances in the lives of hundreds of thousands of vulnerable immigrants, refugees and asylum seekers. NIJC provides legal services to more than 10,000 individuals each year and maintains a success rate of 90 percent in obtaining asylum for those fleeing persecution in their home countries.

 

Events

NIJC offers a wide range of immigration law trainings and other opportunities for attorneys to engage with the organization's mission. An attorney taking a case for the first time must attend one of NIJC's quarterly trainings.

 

Federal Litigation

NIJC and its pro bono attorneys are on the vanguard of federal impact litigation and advocacy, setting positive precedents for people seeking human rights protections within the United States and defending against the administration's efforts to undermine access to due process.