Dec 2022 All Sessions: Defending Survivors

Type: Dec 2022: Virtual CLE Conference
Price: $800.00


For those of you who missed our online conference, "Defending Survivors: Strategies for Immigrant Survivors Seeking Justice," the recordings are now available for purchase. The online conference is composed of six separate sessions. You can buy all six sessions togheter or individual sessions. 

This 2-day conference is intended for intermediate attorneys and DOJ Accredited Representatives who have experience or interest in working with immigrant survivors in removal proceedings before the Immigration Court, as well as those who are seeking guidance on how to challenge USCIS denials of immigrant survivor relief before the agency, AAO, and in federal courts. Speakers include ASISTA’s national experts and other national experts.

On the first day, participants will review current guidance and trends related to prosecutorial discretion and survivor-related guidance, and strategies for representing detained survivors, obtaining post-conviction relief for immigrant survivors, and representing survivors seeking VAWA cancellation. On the second day, participants will review strategies for challenging the denial of immigrant survivor relief by USCIS and identifying systemic issues to challenge in federal court.


Session 1: Latest Discretion Strategies for Survivor Respondents: OPLA PD practices, enforcement guidance, and detention strategies: In this session, we will cover strategies for representing survivors in removal proceedings, including prosecutorial discretion with OPLA, how the ICE victim-centered approach is being applied, and seeking the release of detained U visa applicants, including the basics of pursuing 212(d)(3) waivers in proceedings.


  • Hannah Cartwright, Executive Director and Immigration Attorney, Mariposa Legal, a program of COMMON Foundation
  • Hannah Shapiro, Supervising Attorney, Domestic Violence Immigration Project, Legal Aid Society NYC
  • Cristina Velez, Legal & Policy Director, ASISTA (moderator)


Session 2: Post-Conviction Relief for Survivors: An overview of when post-conviction relief is helpful to immigrant survivors and advocacy strategies and considerations for criminalized immigrant survivors, including legislation.


  • Sabrina Talukder, Federal Policy Director, Sunita Jain Anti-Trafficking Initiative
  • Michelle Carey, Directing Attorney, Los Angeles Center for Law and Justice
  • Rose Cahn, Senior Staff Attorney, Immigrant Legal Resource Center
  • Lia Ocasio, Staff Attorney, ASISTA (moderator)


Session 3: VAWA Cancellation Redux: There were more questions regarding VAWA Cancellation than we had time to answer at our March conference. We’re revisiting this topic, with a focus on eligibility for VAWA cancellation as an abused spouse, and as the parent of an abused child, when your client might choose to proceed with VAWA cancellation as opposed to seeking termination, navigating the bars specific to VAWA cancellation, and navigating the cap.


  • Angel Graf, Directing Attorney, Las Vegas Office of the Immigration Center for Women and Children 
  • Cheryl R. David, Cheryl David Law
  • Kelly Head, Staff Attorney, ASISTA (moderator)


Session 4: Challenging Negative Decisions: Motions to Reopen/Appeal: This panel will discuss common questions regarding MTRs and appeals of negative USCIS decisions, including whether and when to appeal or file an MTR, how to use the form I-290B, preparation of a persuasive brief, and building a record for further litigation. 


  • Leta Sanchez, Attorney, Chamberlain Sanchez Immigration Law PLLC
  • Sonia Parras Konrad, Attorney, Law Office of Sonia Parras PLLC
  • Lia Ocasio, Staff Attorney, ASISTA (moderator)


Session 5: Challenging Negative Decisions: Federal Court : Many are wondering whether litigation is a good strategy for challenging U visa (and other USCIS) denials and systemic problems in adjudication or interpretation. Here we will cover the basics of putting together an APA claim, and how to build a challenge to systemic errors facing immigrant survivors. 


  • Trina Realmuto, Executive Director, National Immigration Litigation Alliance
  • Matt Adams, Legal Director, Northwest Immigrant Rights Project
  • Cristina Velez, Legal & Policy Director, ASISTA (moderator)


Session 6: Current Status of Emerging Issues in Representing Survivors: Topics TBA, including status of advocacy relating to arrest reports, ASISTA’s FOIA efforts, and the bona fide determination (BFD).


  • Kelly Head, Staff Attorney, ASISTA
  • Lia Ocasio, Staff Attorney, ASISTA
  • Leta Sanchez, Attorney, Chamberlain Sanchez Immigration Law PLLC
  • Cristina Velez, Legal & Policy Director, ASISTA

DISCLAIMER: Content is current as of date of recording. It is your responsibility to ensure content is up to date. Written materials accompany the webinar. Please note that you will not receive CLE credit for watching the recording.


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