by Chen Immigration Law Associates 04/10/2012
Reference letters are important since they serve as crucial evidence for the meeting the necessary criteria. They can be used to demonstrate or confirm the significance of the applicant’s work and the recognition of their achievements. Therefore, we at Chen Immigration Law Associates draft reference letters for clients to help them build up their credentials and strengthen their cases.
First of all, after retaining us, clients will have a detailed discussion with our attorneys regarding their cases, usually on the phone and sometimes in person. The first discussion usually takes about an hour. We will have discuss with clients regarding ideal candidates to be their references.
We at Chen Immigration Law Associates always encourage clients to choose letter writers who are experts in the applicant’s field or in a similar field. Unlike typical reference letters, for employment based immigration petitions, it is best to find independent letter writers who do not know the alien personally and have not worked with him/her. This is because USCIS views independent letter writers as having less of a personal stake in having the petition approved. We also encourage clients to find letter writers who have cited the applicant’s work, to demonstrate that the work has had an influence on other researchers in the field. If it is not possible to find a writer who has cited the work, we will try to phrase that the writer have relied on the client’s work or used it as a resource.
We usually draft at least 6 reference letters, which are generally around 1000 words long. Letters will include a short biography of the letter writer’s credentials, technical discussion of the client’s work and why it is significant, and we will overall demonstrate the client’s ability. We will clearly state that the letter is independent if it is. We will also back up claims with evidence in letters; for example, if we say that the client’s publication was highly influential, we will provide citation numbers, media coverage, or other evidence of such. Also valuable are descriptions of how the client overcame a longstanding problem in the field or if they are the first in the world to accomplish something. We at Chen Immigration Law Associates always carefully emphasize what the client has already accomplished, as opposed to describing work as promising or perhaps being significant in the future.
Reference letters can be used to demonstrate achievement/influence in an area where the client’s credentials are not as strong. For example, a reference letter describing how the field is highly specialized and has low average citations can be used to explain a client’s lower citations record.
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North America Immigration Law Group (Chen Immigration Law Associates) is a U.S. immigration law firm dedicated to representing corporations, research institutions, and individuals from all 50 U.S. states regarding I-140 immigration petitions. We specialize in employment-based immigration petition and have a proven record of high success rate for the categories of: EB2-NIW (National Interest Waiver), EB1-A (Alien of Extraordinary Ability) and EB1-B (Outstanding Researcher/Professor).
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