About The Firm
Welcome to the Law Office of Bonnie Stern Wasser! As a Seattle immigration lawyer, I am privileged to have united many families and helped employers to hire skilled global talent for almost 30 years. The firm is located in a relaxed and comfortable office in the Upper Queen Anne neighborhood of Seattle, Washington just north of the Space Needle. Although we prefer meeting clients in person, we do offer video conferencing with out of area clients. In fact, we have clients all over the world. I am in this business because I enjoy meeting people from different walks of life and I like to help people solve their immigration and citizenship problems with the goal of improving lives or being able to take advantage of new business or family opportunities.
To promote efficiency and easy access to the firm, we use a web-based portal called MyCase for exchanging documents and communicating. This enables us to reach out to a wider client base around the US and the world. For those clients without access to the internet or email or who do not prefer our portal, we can still assist you in the traditional manner of in-person, phone and/or snail mail as needed.
A little bit about me and why you should consider hiring this firm to help you….
A long time active member of the American Immigration Lawyers Association (“AILA”), I served a two-year term as Chair of the AILA Washington Chapter (“AILAWA”) and presently serve as Co-Chair of the AILAWA Continuing Education Committee. Previous service includes chairing Congressional Liaison, Advocacy, Consular, Citizenship Day, and other AILAWA committees. In addition, I have also served as a member of the AILA national Military Assistance Project Task Force, the AILA USCIS International Operations and Business Committees. For three years, I was a Board Member of the International Section of the Washington State Bar Association (“WSBA”). Finally, I am also a member of the King County Bar Association and the Washington State Bar Association’s Solo and Small Practice and International Sections.
My immigration law experience has included representing large corporations, small and medium sized companies, nonprofit organizations, government agencies, and individuals from around the world from all walks of life. As a new law school graduate, I began my career as a Trial Attorney with the former Immigration and Naturalization Service in Los Angeles, California. While I have mostly been a business owner of my law practice, first in Los Angeles and then Seattle, I also have experience working for other immigration law firms.
Besides advocating for federal immigration reform, I have also testified on behalf of AILAWA before the Washington State legislature on immigration-related issues such as repeal of the Immigration Assistant Act, against restrictive drivers license proposals, and in support of the maximum 364-day penalty for gross misdemeanors. As a published author and speaker on immigration topics before bar groups, trade associations, and local groups, I am available to write for your publication or to speak to your group. You can see a more detailed biography here.
Besides devotion to my family, friends, business and clients, I enjoy travel, photography, reading, knitting, cycling, and playing fiddle and guitar.
Why hire the Law Office of Bonnie Stern Wasser?
Fundamentally, our clients are real people with real world challenges and opportunities, who deserve our time, attention and respect, and who deserve to be treated with dignity. Immigration and citizenship law is complex and fast changing in the midst of a lot of anti-immigrant media “noise.” Navigating the laws and the system can be daunting and stressful to our clients. With many years of experience in this area of law, the Seattle immigration Law Office of Bonnie Stern Wasser can be your guide in seeking new opportunities in the USA. You need an experienced advocate with expertise in this frequently changing area of the law, and someone who does not just dabble in this niche area once in awhile.
Expertise: With 30 years of legal experience navigating the complex twists and turns of immigration and citizenship laws, policy, and procedures, plus proven skills and a successful track record, you need experienced counsel that you can trust.
We Listen: We want to know your story, priorities, concerns, fears, and issues. We spend time learning about you and your business or family so that we can custom tailor a strategy just for you based on your personal set of facts and goals.
Peace of Mind: U.S. immigration can be stressful and time consuming in many ways. Your matter is important and deserving of more than high volume cookie-cutter service. Our goal is to help solve your most difficult issues quickly and effectively so that you can get on with your life or business.
We Care about You and Your Matter: We know that ultimately, the outcome of your case will affect your ability to be with family, to work lawfully in the U.S. and/or your ability to start a new chapter in your life living in the U.S., whether temporarily or permanently.
Exceptional Client Service: Our goal is to consistently provide personal VIP service to ALL of our clients. We value your input about how we can do more to serve you better at any time along the way in our relationship together. We have long lasting relationships with many of our clients, and our business depends upon those relationships for future referrals.
Effective Advocacy: As your voice, we zealously advocate your case by arguing to the government or courts why you qualify for a given benefit. We also advocate for fair and just immigration reform locally and nationally, and we teach you how you can do the same.
Honesty: We will let you know if we anticipate problems with your case, the chances for success are weak, or we cannot do anything for you. We try to anticipate all possible issues that can arise. We abide by the highest ethical standards.
Value: Fees are value based and payment terms are predictable as much as possible to meet your budget, often in the nature of flat fees billed in stages during the case. For those matters that are not so predictable, we spell out in writing for you what problems can potentially arise and how they will be billed or can add to the cost of your case, if at all. We discuss estimated fees and costs at the initial consultation. We provide written legal services agreements and explain costs and fees in writing as well as the scope of services to be provided. You will receive clear, concise and customized bills.
Efficiency: We use technology to communicate with you in addition to having one-on-one in-person or phone meetings as needed. This firm has used technology for years. We also offer our out of town clients the option to have Skype or other web-based conference calling. By leveraging technology, we can provide very competitive and cost efficient solutions compared to the big firms. We also accommodate those without access to technology.
Accessible: We keep you posted on the status of your case and answer your questions throughout the representation. Unlike other firms, we do not do one-time attorney meetings where the rest of your relationship is with a non-lawyer. Your attorney is your partner throughout the project you hired us to perform.
Transparent: Although we deal with a very complex area of law and procedures, we want you to have clarity about what is being done for you so that you can understand what is required of you. We want to make sure that you understand potential outcomes and their ramifications.
How We Differ from Other Firms
Many years of immigration practice expertise: Having watched the law become more and more difficult over three decades, I have a unique perspective about the practice of immigration law. I started my career as a government Trial Attorney handling deportation cases working for the former Immigration and Naturalization Service in Los Angeles, California. In addition, as an AILA member, I attend government-bar association liaison meetings. By having an appreciation for the government’s need to insure integrity in the immigration system, we view cases from both sides. This helps to better predict the government’s point of view about a case. I abide by the highest ethical standards while providing effective solutions-oriented advocacy.
Leadership: From 2010 until 2012, I served as Chapter Chair of the American Immigration Lawyers Association, Washington Chapter (AILAWA). I served on the AILAWA Executive Committee for four years. As a leader of this specialty bar association, I promoted fairness in the immigration system, continuing education for immigration lawyers, and the highest ethical standards for attorneys in this field. I have encouraged attorneys to do pro bono work and helped to formulate an AILAWA partnership with OneAmerica to provide pro bono Citizenship Days around the State of Washington. I am active in AILAWA’s government liaison activities, including chairing and/or participating on consular, USCIS, and CBP committees, among others, which helps me to better represent my clients. Presently, I am a vice chair our AILAWA Continuing Education Committee. At the AILA national level, I served on the Military Assistance Project Task Force (a pro bono program), and on the national AILA Business and USCIS International Operations Committees. In addition, I served on the Board of the International Section of the Washington State Bar Association.
Advocate for immigration reform: Working tirelessly with AILA colleagues and immigration advocacy groups, we have advocated to Congress and our state legislature for just and fair immigration laws, and consumer protection for our immigrant communities. I educate my clients how they too can advocate for immigration reform. I have testified several times before the Washington state legislature on immigration related matters and have met with members of Congress to advocate for reform to our immigration laws.
Frequent writer and speaker on immigration issues: I have developed and participated in many continuing education programs over the years for immigration and non-immigration lawyers and trade groups. I am available for speaking and writing opportunities. I have published articles in bar publications and blog on immigration topics.
Business owner: As a business owner, I enjoy representing other business owners. I know that projects need to get done on budget and on time with the least amount of red tape. We listen to our employer clients to better understand their industries, operations and unique set of challenges. I enjoy meeting with our business clients at their facilities to learn more about their companies.
Family of immigrants and education abroad: My in-laws and my grandparents immigrated to the U.S., and my spouse is a first generation American. I understand the complex reasons why and how immigrants come to America. While in college, my studies took me to Bordeaux, France where I spent my junior year at university. I know what it’s like to be on your own in a foreign country. As a mother, I understand my clients’ concerns for their families’ welfare, and the importance of family unification.