2016 Pro Bono Report

In 2016, the MDIVANI CORPORATE IMMIGRATION LAW FIRM PRO BONO PROGRAM continued to provide free legal services to immigrant women and children who are victims of domestic violence and other violent crimes, based on referrals from domestic violence shelters in Kansas and Missouri.
Business Immigration Attorneys Mira Mdivani, Danielle Atchison, Leyla McMullen, and Law Clerks Mason Ellis and Meghan Sholy of the UMKC School of Law, worked with women and children referred by local domestic violence shelters and assistance programs to ensure that these immigrant survivors have access to high quality legal representation in obtaining and maintaining legal status in the United States to enable them to break the cycle of violence.  Below are some of our 2016 Pro Bono numbers and services at a glance:

2016 Pro Bono numbers and services at a glance:



Law Clerks


Clients Served


including 14 women & 4 children

Countries Represented


Jamaica, Honduras, Laos, Mexico, Nigeria, Guatemala, and the Philippines

Offenses Perpetrated Against Clients We Have Served:  Domestic Violence, Sexual Assault, Stalking
Free Legal Services Provided to the Survivors:  I-360 petitions Based on Domestic Violence Under the Violence Against Women Act, U Visa petitions, Applications for green cards, naturalization applications, requests for replacement green cards and citizenship certificates for survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault
Services for Battered Women and Children under the Violence Against Women Act
In 2016, Mdivani Corporate Immigration Law Firm provided free legal services to two immigrant women survivors of domestic violence in applying for legal status in the United States under the Violence Against Women Act.
·       I-360 VAWA petitions
·       I-485 Applications for Green cards based on VAWA petitions
·       I-131 Travel Documents to enable a client to see a daughter she has not seen in five years in Thailand and family in Mexico
·       I-765 Employment Authorization Documents to enable our client to work legally in the United States
·       I-751 petition to remove conditions on a Lawful Permanent Resident card after client left the abuser who threatened to “ship her home”.
·       USCIS approved an I-360 and one I-751 petition.
·       Two survivors received VAWA-based green cards for domestic violence.
U Visas and U-Based Green Cards for Victims of Violent Crimes
Also in 2016, we provided free legal services to eleven immigrant victims of crimes, including women and children.
·       I-918 U Visa petitions and extensions , we filed four petitions along with several petitions for derivative children of the victims
·       I-192 Application for Advance Parole
·       I-485 Application to Adjust Status for two survivors of domestic violence
·       I-131 Application for Travel Permission for two clients
·       I-765 Employment Authorization Documents for our clients to work legally in the United States for three clients, one with deferred action based on U Visa Cap
·       We responded to extensive Requests for Evidence for several of petitions.
·       USCIS approved two U Visa-based Green Cards for two survivors of domestic violence.
Replacement Applications
·       We filed an I-90 to replace a victim’s stolen green card, as without this, she cannot travel live comfortably
·       We filed an N-565 to replace a victim’s stolen certificate of citizenship—without this certificate she cannot get a passport, driver license, or other necessary items.
Client Quotes:
“Informing you that I have received my green through the mail =). I wanted to say thank you! Once again. I do not have a way to pay all of what has been done for me and my family. You will always have my gratitude. I wish you prosperity and God bless you.”
–Pro Bono Client
“This year we are thankful for everything you have done for our clients. Helping someone get legal remedy and being able to live in this country without any fear is the best gift one can have. Your firm has changed so many lives and us at SAFEHOME, we are truly grateful.”
—Advocate, SAFEHOME
“Thank you so much for your working to help my daughter’s life and coming to the USA…My daughter will be coming [to the U.S.] on January 12, 2017. Would like to say thank you for everything—helping my daughter life.”
–Pro Bono Client who will be reunited with her young daughter after 5 years apart.
“Thanks a lot for helping me. I highly appreciate it. It has been very difficult without the certificate…it affected me deeply but now I can breathe again. Thank you guys for what you do. You are my life saver.”
—Pro Bono Client
Community Outreach re. Domestic Violence and Immigrant Women & Children
Attorneys Mira Mdivani and Danielle Atchison held two several hour-long outreach programs in 2016 to spread the word about options for immigrant women and children victims of domestic violence. They visited a local domestic violence shelter to train over 20 advocates on how to recognize, triage, and work with attorneys on these cases. They were also invited to the Jasper County Bar Association luncheon where they trained lawyers on how to recognize when these matters may arise, how to triage them, and practical tips for lawyers looking to take these cases pro bono in their area.
Insight into a Case
As told by attorney Danielle Atchison:
There have been several cases this year that have tugged at my heartstrings. All of the women and children that we serve have their own unique story with awful facts, and a glimmer of hope. While I care very deeply for all of our clients and the success in their cases, one success story this year, in particular, marked me forever.
Last year we helped a wonderful Laotian client who was strong enough to leave her abuser and work with us to get a VAWA-based green card. After this success, she moved to California to be with extended family. This year, we kept the progress rolling and worked tirelessly through the language and geographical barriers to get her daughter an immigrant visa to come to the U.S. to be with her mom. Her daughter is due to arrive in the U.S. at the beginning of 2017! Mom and daughter, who has a health issue, have been separated for five years and it is such a sweet feeling to know that soon she will have her daughter with her for every moment moving forward. I am so very happy for them, and proud that we turned an awful abusive situation into a success story for this woman and her daughter. This is honestly why I wanted to become a lawyer—to help people navigate our legal system.
Special Thanks
We want to extend a special thank you to staff and leadership at Kansas City Metro area domestic violence shelters, SAFEHOME and HopeHouse, for partnering with us in bringing legal status to immigrant survivors.
Mdivani Corporate Immigration Law Firm

7007 College Blvd, Suite 460

Overland Park, KS 66211