ATLANTA, GEORGIA - STERN Law, founded by Jessica Stern, celebrates its eight year anniversary as the first 100% CrImmigration law firm in the nation. Jessica Stern, Founder/CEO and Managing Attorney at STERN Law, merged her expertise in criminal defense with her passion for helping immigrants who want a better way to confidently help non-US citizens fight criminal charges while simultaneously securing legal immigration status in the United States.
Stern says that when it comes to immigration consequences of a criminal offense, it is “important for lawyers to understand both criminal and immigration law.” CrImmigration “centers on building a fundamental understanding of criminal law, immigration, and its impact on the other.” When Stern started STERN Law, she realized that this fundamental understanding was severely lacking. For example, when a non-U.S. citizen had been accused of a crime, Stern found that their criminal defense attorney often ended up jeopardizing the non-U.S. citizen’s ability to stay in the U.S. with their families or a future path toward becoming a legal resident or citizen due to immigration law being out of the criminal defense attorney’s scope. On the other hand, even an immigration attorney’s expertise in immigration law does not equip them to proficiently advise their clients of the impact of a criminal charge or conviction.
For such a dynamic type of practice, there is something distinctly powerful about having a specialized legal team, as STERN has built. All attorneys at STERN Law are equipped to handle both criminal and immigration scenarios due to their scope of knowledge surrounding both disciplines. Because they understand both criminal defense and immigration, they can provide the proper defense for the non-U.S. citizen in getting the criminal charges dismissed or lessened, preventing deportation, securing immigration status like a visa or green card, appealing a conviction, or receiving a pardon.
Most importantly, STERN Law gets results for their clients. Stern and her team have successfully helped clients remain secure with their families, obtain citizenship, green card, and/or immigrant visa, get a reduction or dismissal of criminal charges, win their case in Immigration Court, and successfully defend against deportation.
Stern’s passion for providing non-U.S. citizens with the same quality of representation as a U.S. citizen would receive has led her to create training for criminal defense attorneys across the country about the immigration consequences of criminal charges – referred to as Padilla Immigration Consequences Training. In just the last two years, Stern and her legal team have trained over 1000 attorneys across the country and launched their intensive Padilla Master Class to help other criminal defense attorneys become masters at CrImmigration.
The Padilla training was developed as a direct result of a 2010 Supreme Court Decision in Padilla v. Kentucky, 559 U.S. 356 (2010), when seven Justices held that “important consequences such as deportation flowing automatically from the criminal conviction were part of defense counsel’s responsibility to advise under the Sixth Amendment.” As a result of Padilla, criminal defense attorneys are now required to become reasonably competent in an entirely new area of law. Providing improper or inadequate advice to the client can result in further legal action based on Ineffective Assistance of Counsel claims or malpractice. In addition to training, Stern offers criminal defense attorneys the option of having a Padilla Consultation where they “provide a careful legal analysis of their client’s immigration consequences, laying out the recommended strategy before the attorney or their client makes any decision in the case.”
Stern’s early days as a public defender handling approximately 2,000 felony cases made her realize there was a lack of knowledge and representation for non-U.S. citizens, and she sought to change this. For her tireless efforts over the years to educate, train, and counsel public defenders across the county on the responsibilities of criminal defense attorneys to properly advise non-U.S. citizen clients about the risks of deportation, Stern was recently awarded the Pro Bono Champion Award by the American Immigration Lawyers Association.
Stern also serves on several boards and service organizations which she is committed to in spite of all of her other work mentioned above. Stern also makes media appearances on CNN and recently joined Rose Scott of the NPR show Closer Look to discuss the critical impact of CrImmigration Law.
As STERN Law celebrates its 8th year, Stern and her team look forward to defending clients in challenging CrImmigration scenarios and increasing the training of criminal defense attorneys on the immigration consequences of criminal charges through their Padilla Immigration Consequences Training.
At STERN Law, we defend the American Dream for all non- US citizens! We don’t care about your past or your record. In fact we encourage all non- US citizens with criminal records to hire us to get your criminal case dismissed and to secure a legal immigration status for you and your family in the United States of America.
Trust us because we know how intimidating it is to walk into a courtroom or government building, where your freedom and liberty are at stake. We also know how hard it is to understand the legal process and the rights that you have as a non-US citizen. Rest assured that if you hire STERN Law you will be made fully aware of all options surrounding your situation as well as several strategies. You will gain an experienced legal team who will use their expertise and compassion to help you achieve your desired result.
If you feel confused, alone, or judged by the system, let STERN Law serve as your most trusted counsel.
The information you obtain at this site is not, nor is it intended to be, legal advice. You should consult an attorney for advice regarding your individual situation. Contacting us does not create an attorney-client relationship.