Third-Party Counsel to Attorney


  • Case: I-290B Motion to Reopen for I-485 Change of Status
  • Processing Time: 1 week
  • Challenges:
    1. The Motion to Reopen was due in a week
    2. Attorney was helping his client pro-bono
    3. Incorrect birthday, social security, and name change on initial application, and this was the reason for denial
    4. USCIS could argue that the case had been improperly filed and easily deny the green card.


When Mr. Sandler* of a New Jersey law firm received an I-485 Adjustment of Status denial for his client, he was shocked. It appeared that all the forms were filled out correctly, and they were even double checked for accuracy by his client before the final filing. However, upon reviewing the denial, the client found that he accidentally filled out the date of birth and social security number for his daughter instead of himself. Not only that, but the joint-sponsor on the case had a prior name change and failed to properly explain or provide documentation to reconcile their new legal name and the documentation they were submitting with their former name. With a one-week deadline, Mr. Sandler quickly sought to file an I-290B Motion to Reopen for his client’s I-485, but with little experience in filing Motion to Reopen cases, he knew he needed help. He searched online for an immigration law firm and found Tsang & Associates, and he reached out to see if we could serve as a third-party counsel to assist him in filing his client’s Motion to Reopen.


Because Mr. Sandler had little experience filing Motion to Reopen cases, we first provided him with a Motion to Reopen template and sample affidavits so he could have a general guideline of how to proceed with the case. Unable to locate the correct case-law due to his lack of resources caused by working from home, we also provided him with the basic case-law that he would need to use in order to argue and strengthen his client’s case. In addition, by acting as a third-party counsel, we not only supplied him with our recommendations for exhibits that he should include in his final filing, but we also reviewed and provided suggestions on the affidavits that he planned on submitting.

Once Mr. Sandler finished drafting his client’s case, he sent it back to us, and we reviewed the final filing and provided feedback on areas to strengthen before he sent it to USCIS. We also served as the final eyes for his case and caught vital errors on the forms that, if left unnoticed, would have led to a swift denial by USCIS. Finally, throughout the entire process, Mr. Sandler had multiple questions about the information required on the forms, the formatting of exhibits, and the general Motion to Reopen case-processing. We thoroughly answered all his questions and was able to help him file the client’s Motion to Reopen within one week.


After we helped Mr. Sandler in his filing of the Motion to Reopen, we had not heard from him for several months. Especially considering the COVID-19 pandemic, we knew case notices might be delayed. As we worked through our own clients’ cases and pressing deadlines, our assistance in Mr. Sandler’s Motion to Reopen was slowly drifting to the back of our minds. However, five months later, we received an unexpected email from Mr. Sandler exclaiming that his client’s Motion to Reopen was granted! The client is now scheduled for an interview to receive his green card, and his wife and baby can now feel more secure in the U.S. during these uncertain and unprecedented times.

*Name has been changed to protect client identity

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