Ira J. Kurzban

Attorney Profile

Top Rated Immigration Attorney in Coral Gables, FL

Kurzban Kurzban Tetzeli & Pratt, P.A.
 | 131 Madeira Ave, Coral Gables, FL 33134
Phone: 305-444-0060
Fax: 305-444-3503
Selected To Super Lawyers: 2006 - 2020
Licensed Since: 1976
Practice Areas:
  • Immigration: Business (80%),
  • International (10%),
  • Civil Rights (10%)
Languages Spoken:
  • English,
  • Spanish
    Attorney Profile

    Attorney Ira J. Kurzban is a co-founder and partner of the Kurzban Kurzban Tetzeli and Pratt P.A. law firm in Coral Gables, Florida. Board-certified in immigration and nationality law by The Florida Bar and possessing more than 42 years of legal experience, Mr. Kurzban has earned a reputation as one of the country's preeminent immigration attorneys. He also handles matters involving civil rights law, international and human rights law, and employment discrimination.

    An honors graduate of Syracuse University, Mr. Kurzban attended the University of California at Berkeley, where he earned his Master of Arts in political theory and obtained his Juris Doctor from Boalt Hall School of Law in 1976.

    While in law school, Mr. Kurzban was a member of the Wasserstein Public Interest Fellows Program at Harvard Law School for his outstanding public interest service. He is licensed to practice in California, Florida, Iowa and New York as well as before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 2nd, 5th, 6th, 9th and 11th Circuits and the U.S. Supreme Court.

    Over the course of his career, Mr. Kurzban has received numerous awards and honors for his service as an immigration attorney as well as his success in the areas of employment law and human rights advocacy. Of note, the National Law Journal named him among the Top 20 immigration lawyers in the country, and The Best Lawyers in America© recognized him in the areas of immigration law and employment law each year from 1993 to 2010.

    Moreover, Lawdragon included him in its list of 500 Leading Lawyers in America, and he has received recognition and awards for his exceptional immigration and human rights work from the University of Miami, the American Immigration Lawyers Association, the National Lawyers Guild, Esquire Magazine, Newsweek Magazine and others. He also holds an AV Preeminent peer review rating* from Martindale-Hubbell as well as a listing in Who's Who in America, Who's Who in American Law and Who's Who in the World.

    Along with maintaining a successful legal practice, Mr. Kurzban serves on the adjunct legal faculty at the University of Miami School of Law, where he teaches immigration and nationality law. He also writes extensively and conducts lectures and seminars throughout the country on a variety of legal topics related to his practice areas. Additionally, Mr. Kurzban helped establish the Berkeley Law Foundation, which provides scholarships and financial assistance to law students.

    *AV®, AV Preeminent®, Martindale-Hubbell Distinguished and Martindale-Hubbell Notable are certification marks used under license in accordance with the Martindale-Hubbell certification procedures, standards and policies. Martindale-Hubbell® is the facilitator of a peer review rating process. Ratings reflect the anonymous opinions of members of the bar and the judiciary. Martindale-Hubbell® Peer Review Rating™ fall into two categories – legal ability and general ethical standards.

    Best Lawyers® and The Best Lawyers in America© are registered trademarks of BL Rankings, LLC d/b/a Best Lawyers and Co., LLC. The names, logo, and database are protected under the trademark, copyright, and fair use laws of the United States of America. Any use of name, including in electronic form, must be made only by permission and under the guidelines of BL Rankings, LLC d/b/a Best Lawyers and Co., LLC.

    Practice Areas
    • 80%Immigration: Business
    • 10%International
    • 10%Civil Rights


    Selected to Super Lawyers for 15 yearsbottom-image

    Super Lawyers: 2006 - 2020

    Certificates and Credentials

    Florida Bar Board of Legal Specialization

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    About Ira Kurzban

    Admitted: 1976, Florida

    Professional Webpage:


    • Honored for exemplified signal service, University of Pennsylvania School of Law
    • Recipient of the Lawyers of the Americas Award for his work on behalf of human rights in this hemisphere given by the University of Miami
    • Best Lawyers in America
    • Florida Legal Elite, 2004
    • South Florida Legal Guide - Top Lawyers
    • Super Lawyers, 2006-2012
    • Who's Who Legal - International Who's Who of Business Lawyers - Corporate Immigration, 2012
    • AV Rated with Lexis-Nexis, 2009
    • Nation's Most Powerful Employment Attorneys - Immigration 2011
    • Lawdragon - The Leading 500 Lawyers in America
    • Named one of the top 100 employment lawyers in the US
    • Named First Tier Lawyer in Chambers, 2010
    • Named by Miami Today as One of the Twenty Best Lawyers in Dade County, Florida, 1991
    • Selected in Newsweek Magazine as one of 100 American Heroes for his work for refugees
    • Selected by Esquire Magazine as part of America's New Leadership Class
    • Named by National Law Journal as One of the Top Twenty Immigration Lawyers in the United States, 1982
    • Named one of world's twenty-three most highly regarded corporate immigration lawyers, 2005
    • Named in the Best Lawyers in America for Immigration and Employment Law, 1993 - 2010
    • Awarded annually to the trial lawyer who has contributed significantly to public justice, Trial Lawyer of the Year Award, Trial Lawyers for Public Justice, 1995
    • Phi Beta Kappa Fraternity
    • University of Pennsylvania School of Law, Fellow
    • Each year the University of Pennsylvania Law School recognizes one lawyer in the United States whose work exemplifies the highest aspects of the legal profession., Honorary Fellow, University of Pennsylvania Law School, 1987
    • Awarded annually to the lawyer in the United States who, through litigation, has made the greatest contribution to immigrants' rights, Jack Wasserman Award, American Immigration Lawyers Association, 1983
    • Award is given annually to the lawyer nationally who has made the greatest contribution to writing and scholarship in immigration and nationality law. I received the award due to my one volume treatise Kurzban's Immigration Law Sourcebook that is in its Eleventh Edition and used by every immigration judge and most immigration lawyers in the United States, Edith Lowenstein Memorial Award for Excellence In Writing In Immigration Law, American Immigration Lawyers Association, 2002
    • Awarded annually to the lawyer who has made a major contributions to human rights in this Hemisphere, Lawyer of the Americas' Award, University of Miami InterAmerican Law Review, 1992
    • Recognition for assisting refugees and bringing home the meaning of freedom to thousands of refugees seeking liberty on our shores, Commendation, Metropolitan Dade Country, 1986
    • Each year one lawyer in the state of Florida is recognized by the Chief Justice of the Florida Supreme Court for his pro bono work. Mr. Kurzban was the first recipient of the award, Tobias Simon Pro Bono Service Award, Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Florida, 1982
    • The award is given  annually to the lawyer who has made the greatest contribution to immigrants' rights, Carol King Award, National Lawyers Guild, 1996
    • Awarded annually to the lawyer who has made the greatest contribution toward the advancement of human rights for immigrants, Human Rights Award, American Immigration Lawyers Association, 1992
    • On the hundredth anniversary of the Statute of Liberty Newsweek selected 100 American heroes to commemorate the event, 100 American Heroes, Newsweek Magazine, 1986

    Special Licenses/Certifications:

    • Board Certified in Immigration and Nationality Law. Mr. Kurzban helped to write and grade the first examination for Board Certification in the State of Florida, 1995

    Bar/Professional Activity:

    • U.S. Court of Appeals 11th Circuit
    • U.S. Court of Appeals 9th Circuit
    • U.S. Court of Appeals 6th Circuit
    • U.S. Court of Appeals 5th Circuit
    • U.S. Court of Appeals 2nd Circuit
    • U.S. Supreme Court, 1980
    • New York, 2015
    • American Immigration Lawyers Association, Former General Counsel
    • Iowa, 2008
    • Florida, 1976
    • California, 1976
    • American Immigration Lawyers Association, Past-President
    • President, South Florida Chapter of the American Immigration Lawyers Association, 1980
    • American Inns of Court, 1990
    • Coordinating Committee on Immigration Law, American Bar Association, 1991
    • Founder and Initial Director of the Berkeley Law Foundation, a nonprofit legal foundation that provides scholarships and grants for lawyers to engage in pro bono work while in law school and upon graduation, 1976
    • National President, American Immigration Lawyers Association, 1987
    • Member, Civil Justice Advisory Committee, US District Court, Southern District of Florida, 1993
    • Chairperson, Refugee Legal Assistance Committee of the American Bar Association, 1983
    • General Counsel, American Immigration Lawyers Association, 1992

    Pro bono/Community Service:

    • Founder and Initial Director of Immigrants' List, a PAC dedicated to promoting the rights of immigrants, 2006
    • General Counsel for the Haitian Refugee Center, Inc. in Miami, Florida, 1980
    • Founder and Initial Director of the Berkeley Law Foundation, a non-profit organization established to provide scholarships and grants to law students and lawyers engaged in pro bono work in the public interest, 1976

    Scholarly Lectures/Writings:

    • Lecture on immigration after the events of Sept. 11, 2001, Lecturer, Edward G. Donley Lecturer, West Virginia University School Of Law, 2001
    • Adjunct Faculty Member, Immigration and Nationality Law, University of Miami School of Law
    • Lectured on refugee and asylee issues at the Second Circuit Judicial Conference, Lecturer, Second Circuit Judicial Conference, U.S. Court Of Appeals For The Second Circuit, 1986
    • Lectured on immigration issues involving refugees and asylees, Lecturer, Baron de Hirsch Meyer Lectures, University Of Miami School Of Law, 1982
    • Article addressed the limitations of refugee and asylee proceeding under immigration law and procedure, A Critical Analysis of Refugee Law, University of Miami Law Review, University Of Miami School Of Law, 1982
    • Several chapters on damage awards against federal officials in immigration matters, attorneys fees under the EAJA and judicial review of immigration matters, Author, Damages Against Federal Officials, Attorneys Fees and Judicial Review, Immigration Law and Procedure-Practice and Strategy, Matthew Bender, 1986
    • Kurzban's Immigration Law Sourcebook is in its Eleventh Edition and is the most widely used single volume treatise on immigration law in the United States., Author, Kurzban's Immigration Law Sourcebook, 2008
    • Mr. Kurzban wrote a chapter on Democracy and Immigration in Keeping Out the Other a new book released by Columbia University Press, author, Democracy and Immigration, Keeping Out the Other, 2008
    • An article for the magazine of the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers regarding the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act of 1996 and its effect on judicial review, Author, The Disappearing Federal Courts, The Champion, NACDL, 1997
    • Article addressed the intricacies of the employer sanctions law created by the Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986, Author, Employer Sanctions--Two Years Later, The Florida Bar Journal, 1990
    • Chapter on petitions for review and other appeals in the Eleventh Circuit regarding immigration matters, Chapter Author, Immigration Appeal in Federal Appellate Procedure-11th Circuit, 1996
    • Review of Immigration Law after the Immigration Act of 1990, Co-Editor, The Changing Face of Immigration Law, The Florida Bar Journal, 1992
    • Chapter on federal Judicial review of immigration matters in the Immigration Law and Defense treatise, Federal Judical Review, Immigration Law and Defense, National Lawyers Guild, 1987
    • A book review and analysis of certain aspects of immigration law, Author, A More Critical Analysis of Immigration Law, The Harvard Law Review, Harvard University Law School, 1986
    • An analysis of immigration procedures and the manner in which asylum procedures lack due process protections, Author, Restricting the Asylum Process, San Diego Law Review, 1982
    • Lectured to law clerks and members of the Courts of Appeals on immigration related issues, Lecturer, U.S. Courts of Appeals, 7th and 9th Circuits, 2006


    • Chang v. U.S., 327 F.3d 911 (9th Cir. 2003)
    • Smith v. Smathers, 372 So.2d 427 (Fla. 1979)
    • Commissioner v. Jean, 496 U.S. 154 (1990)
    • McNary v. Haitian Refugee Center, Inc. 498 U.S. 479 (1991) 
    • Jean v. Nelson, 472 U.S. 846 (1985)
    • Ironworkers v. Bowen, 625 F.2d 1255 (5th Cir. 1980)
    • ABC Charters, Inc. v. Bronson, 591 F.Supp.2d 1272 (S.D. Fla. 2008)

    Educational Background:

    • University of California, Berkeley, M.A. in Political Theory
    • Syracuse University, B.A., With High Honors
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    Office Location for Ira J. Kurzban

    131 Madeira Ave
    Coral Gables, FL 33134

    Phone: 305-444-0060

    Fax: 305-444-3503

    Ira J. Kurzban:

    Last Updated: 5/7/2020

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