Guardians at the Gate: the Career Paths and Professional Development of Private U.S. Immigration Lawyers
40 Pages Posted: 13 Aug 2007 Last revised: 13 Oct 2020
Date Written: August 1, 2007
This paper presents preliminary findings from a qualitative study of 71 U.S. immigration lawyers who are engaged in private practice in the New York City area. The study is designed to explore the professional development, socialization and ethical decisionmaking of this segment of the bar. This first paper focuses on the lawyers' backgrounds, career paths and professional education. It describes, inter alia, the unusual diversity of this bar, the lawyers' reasons for practicing immigration law, their introduction to legal practice and their networks. Ultimately, the goal of the project is not only to better understand the private immigration bar, but to enhance our understanding of the professional development, organization and socialization of the U.S. legal profession.
Keywords: legal profession, lawyers, immigration
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