Law Office of Ana C. Zigel

Since 1986, the Law Office of Ana Claudia Zigel has provided clients with outstanding immigration and visa services; voted Baltimores Best Immigration Lawyer Ana is a member of AILA and the MSBA.

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There are a variety of means of entering the United States and obtaining lawful immigration status. If you have not found a way to lawfully immigrate to the United States in the previous pages, perhaps you may find what you are looking for here.

Foreign Nationals with Criminal Convictions and/or Victims of Crime

Criminal convictions - even convictions for crimes committed outside of the United States - can threaten a person's immigration status even after entry into the United States. Every foreign national who has had any contact with the police or with a criminal court should consult with an experienced immigration attorney prior to filing any immigration applications. The Law Office of Ana C. Zigel has extensive experience helping foreign nationals mitigate some of the immigration consequences of past criminal activities. Ana has even taught Maryland defense attorneys how to represent foreign nationals in their criminal matters.

Sadly, some immigrants are victimized within the United States. Fortunately, there is help available. In some compelling situations, visas are available to:

  • Victims of domestic violence
  • Victims of crime
  • Witnesses to crime

If you think you may be eligible for a visa based on any of the above, please meet with us. All of your information is held in the strictest confidence. Please contact us today to arrange a consultation.

Asylum and Refugee Law and Temporary Protected Status

If you cannot return to your home country because you fear persecution based on your (1) race, (2) religion, (3) nationality, (4) membership in a particular social group or (5) political opinion, you may be eligible for protection under U.S. asylum law. Depending on your unique situation, you may be eligible for asylum, withholding of removal, or protection under the UN Convention Against Torture.

While some foreign nationals attempt to complete their asylum applications without the assistance of counsel, relying on the advice of friends and colleagues, it is estimated that having the assistance of an experienced immigration attorney can nearly triple a foreign national's chances of success. This is a rapidly developing and very difficult area of law, and foreign nationals who think that they are eligible for asylum should consult with qualified legal counsel early in the asylum process. The Law Office of Ana C. Zigel has assisted clients in all phases of the asylum process and would like to meet with you to see if she can do the same for you.

Temporary Protected Status

Foreign nationals from countries experiencing ongoing armed conflict or natural disaster may be eligible to remain in the United States under a grant of "Temporary Protected Status." Foreign nationals from countries that have been designated for TPS are lawfully present in the United States and receive employment authorization. This is a temporary visa that does not lead to lawful permanent residence.

The countries that have been designated for TPS are:

  • Burundi
  • El Salvador
  • Honduras
  • Liberia (Deferred Enforced Departure)
  • Nicaragua
  • Somalia
  • Sudan

The designation of countries for TPS changes each year. If you believe you are eligible for TPS or need assistance re-registering for TPS, please contact this office for a consultation.

Diversity Immigrant Visas

Each year, the Diversity Lottery Program makes 55,000 new immigrant visas available for individuals from underrepresented nations. Administered by the U.S. State Department, the Diversity Lottery Program requires that applicants have either a high school education or its equivalent or two years work experience within the last five years in a job which demands at least two years training. The website for the lottery is

Winning the Diversity Lottery does not ensure that you will be granted the visa to enter the United States. Every year, hundreds of Diversity Lottery winners are unable to receive their visa because of paperwork and processing delays. If you have won the Diversity Lottery, please let the Law Office of Ana C. Zigel assist you in preparing your visa application and for preparing for your arrival in the United States.

Find out more about this program, as well as other means of obtaining legal permanent residency in the U.S., by contacting us today to arrange a consultation.