Immigration

Immigration

The West African Community Council (WACC) offers free or low-cost legal representation in immigration matters. Our office is recognized by the U.S. Department of Justice to provide quality immigration services to low-income constituents. Our staff consists of experienced attorneys and accredited representatives who seek to guide our clients through the complicated legal process. The West African Community Council offers a full range of immigration legal services, including defense from deportation. We seek to empower our clients by ensuring they understand their legal options and the processes involved throughout their case.

Immigration Legal Team/Service Providers

Steven Denton, Esq. – Legal Director

Steven received his law degree from Georgetown University Law Center, where he earned a Certificate in Refugees and Humanitarian Emergencies. Steven interned with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees and focused his studies and practice following graduation upon asylum. He then worked as an immigration attorney in the Bronx, New York for several years before moving to the Seattle area and joining the West African Community Council. Steven speaks French.

Lou Metsu, JD – Staff Attorney

Lou received her law degree from American University Washington College of Law focusing her studies on immigration law. She has worked on a variety of immigration humanitarian related efforts including an internship with USCIS at the Arlington Asylum Office. After graduating law school, Lou worked as a Business Immigration Law Clerk in the Washington, DC area. Lou speaks French.

Faiza Duale, LLC – Legal Coordinator

Faiza is our legal coordinator and is a licensed attorney in Kenya and earned her LLM in Sustainable International Development from the University of Washington. She has worked with the Refugee Affairs Department of the Kenyan Government in the past. Faiza has also completed her training and is currently waiting to be accredited by the Department of Justice to represent clients with USCIS. She is also currently working towards taking the bar exam in California and hopes to be a licensed attorney within the next 2 years to best represent our clients fully. Faiza speaks Somali and Swahili.

Services we Provide

The West African Community Council works with all persons in the Seattle surrounding area. For persons living in King County who meet qualifying income guidelines and are at risk of deportation, we may provide free legal services. For other cases such as citizenship, family petitions, or green card applications, we may be required to charge a low service fee; however, no one will be turned away for inability to pay.

To schedule and appointment, please call (206)636-9882 or email immigration@waccofseattle.org

Immigration legal services that our office offers include but are not limited to the following:
Click here for more detail about our immigration services

i. General Immigration Consultations
ii. Citizenship Application Assistance
iii. Petitions to bring Family to the United States
iv. Applications for Green Cards and Green Card Renewals
v. Work Authorization Application and Renewal
vi. Applications for Asylum
vii. U and T Visas for victims of crime and trafficking
viii. VAWA Self Petitions for relatives of US citizens or permanent residents
ix. Defense in Immigration Court Proceedings

Support for Our Local Immigrant Community

In addition to our direct legal assistance, the West African Community Council also offers educational presentations and workshops on immigration law and updates to the local community through partnerships with community organizations. For asylum seekers in the Seattle area who are not yet eligible to receive a work permit or obtain other benefits, the West African Community Council created an Asylum Seeker Assistance Fund. If you would like to make a tax-deductible donation to this fund to provide direct cash assistance and support to vulnerable individuals, please click here.


Immigration Services

General Immigration Consultations: The United States immigration system is complicated and is subject to frequent changes in law and policy. If you have a question about your immigration status or options, our office is ready to work with you in a confidential and comfortable way to discuss your unique situation and the options that may exist in your case.
Citizenship Application Assistance: US Citizenship provides security from immigration problems and the chance to participate fully in society—including through voting or running for office. The West African Community Council will work with you to ensure your eligibility, prepare all necessary documentation, and to prepare you for your citizenship interview.
Petitions to Bring Family to the United States: The West African Community Council provides assistance in reuniting families with relatives who are living abroad. Our office may assist you in preparing the petition to allow your family member to reside in the United States, in making critical arguments to US Immigration to support this application, and in the complicated processes before US consulates abroad.
Applications for Green Cards and Green Card Renewals: Certain persons may be eligible to apply directly for a green card through a family member or other means. The West African Community Council will work closely with you to prepare lengthy applications and supporting evidence and to ensure there are no barriers to the approval of your green card. Our office will also assist in the renewal of green cards and provide careful screening to ensure that nothing will jeopardize your status.
Work Authorization Application and Renewal: The West African Community Council consults with individuals to help them gain or retain legal status or attain work authorization. Each case is highly unique because every person has a different background and story and certain immigration regulations determining who is eligible for work authorization have been subject to recent change.
Applications for Asylum: The West African Community Council assists persons who cannot return to their country due to a fear of persecution to prepare the necessary forms and evidence to succeed in an asylum application. Our office is experienced in and understanding of the difficult nature of this work and will guide you through the process in a clear and effective manner.
U and T Visas for Victims of Crime or Trafficking: Certain persons who have been the victim of crime or trafficking in the United States may be eligible for immigration relief. The West African Community Council will work with you to obtain necessary documentation and certifications from law enforcement agencies and to present an effective case to immigration.
VAWA Self Petitions for Relatives of US Citizens or Permanent Residents: Certain persons who have been abused physically or otherwise by US citizen or permanent resident spouses or certain other relatives may be eligible to apply for immigration relief. Our office will work with you in a safe and comfortable manner to prepare these difficult cases.
Defense in Immigration Court Proceedings: The West African Community Council provides removal defense services for immigrants before the Seattle and Tacoma Immigration Courts. Our office works closely with our clients to discuss their immigration and personal history to determine for what relief they may qualify from deportation. Our office will prepare necessary court filings and evidentiary documentation, ensure a client is prepared for their hearings before the courts, and appear alongside you in your proceedings to present your case