Harlan D. Karp
Artwork by Egle Bredikis

An Immigration Law Firm For Foreign Professionals And Families

Phone: (216) 685-1360

About the Firm

I am an attorney who has over 20 years of legal experience. During my legal career, I worked a short stint in the government (for a federal judge) and primarily in private practice. For the last dozen years, I have focused my legal practice primarily on U.S. immigration law.

My father, Marvin Karp, has been a lawyer for fifty years. My mom was a school teacher – so good language skills were expected. Growing up, I saw how hard my father worked. He was always drafting his work on a yellow legal pad. As a child, I got to help him copy cases from the law books on a copy machine. Watching him, and my own twenty years of work, has given me some insights as to what it means to be a lawyer. As a law school student, one former boss gave me tough issues to research in the law library. He told me, “Don’t tell me no or we can’t do it. Tell me how it can be done.” Every day, clients come to me frustrated by our complicated immigration rules and procedures. My job is to analyze the situation and see if there is a practical solution to the problem.

In the year 2000, I founded my own boutique immigration law firm to better serve my clients. I am the type of hands on lawyer who actually works his own case, start to finish. And who answers his own phone and drops off the filing at fed ex himself. And I still work the copy machine. My clients have a lawyer who actually works their case from start to finish. I have long-term client relationships with both individual and institutional clients. Many of my foreign physician clients start working with me in the context of their J-1 (Conrad 30) waiver. I help them get through the layers of the J-1 waiver so they can obtain H1-B temporary worker status; then we work towards obtaining permanent residency status (greencard). It could be through the PERM labor certification, I-140 immigrant visa, to their greencard.

Or a client may come to us on an H1-B visa or an O-1 visa and decide to sponsor themselves for permanent residency. That path might start as an EB-11 and/or national interest waiver and seek a greencard. Or I try several different options or combinations, whether employer-sponsored or self-petition, to obtain permanent residency

On family-based immigration, the typical case is a couple that is engaged to be married, or legally married. We can proceed as a marriage based greencard, or, if the spouse is abroad, we can proceed through the K visa. Or someone wants to sponsor his or her parent and bring them over. That involves looking at the visa bulletin and obtaining a priority date. Years later, clients will seek to become U.S. citizens so they can vote, obtain a U.S. passport. As a former history major, I prepare clients for their citizenship interviews and insist that they know why the U.S. flag has 13 stars and stripes

Although the majority of our clients are foreign physicians on J-1 visas, O-1 visas, or H-1B temporary worker visas, our clients come from all walks of life, whether as professors, nurses, business people, and entrepreneurs. They come from all parts of the world. For those who speak Spanish - Se habla español aqui. Puedo entenderle. . [Spanish is spoken here. I can understand you]. With the smattering of other languages I have some knowledge, we can understand one another.

I remind myself, constantly, that I too am the descendant of immigrants. My ancestors had humble backgrounds in Eastern Europe and came here for better lives and opportunities. I admire their courage in the face of terrible obstacles. They improved their own lives and those of their children. Similarly, I admire the outlook of today's immigrants: their optimism, can-do spirit, and work ethic. I believe that this country offers hope and opportunity, and that one can obtain his or her version of the American dream.