Melanie Shapiro

Attorney Profile

Top Rated Immigration Attorney in Norwood, MA

Melanie Shapiro, Esq.
 | 60 Guild St, Ste. 2
Norwood, MA 02062
Phone: 781-461-0100
Fax: 781-461-0105
Selected To Rising Stars: 2018 - 2019
Licensed Since: 2012
Practice Areas:
  • Immigration: Consumer
Languages Spoken:
  • English,
  • Spanish
Attorney Profile

Attorney Melanie Shapiro is the founder and owner of the Law Office of Melanie Shapiro in Dedham, Massachusetts. A top-rated attorney with more than six years of legal experience, Ms. Shapiro focuses her practice primarily on immigration law, and she serves a diverse range of clients throughout the state as well as across the country and around the world who have legal needs involving any of the following:

·       Family petitions

·       Marriage and fiancé petitions

·       Naturalization

·       Asylum

·       Removal defense

·       Special immigrant juvenile status

·       Appeals

·       Waivers

·       Violence Against Women Act issues

·       Immigration bonds

·       T and U Visas

In addition, her law firm also provides advocacy and support for second parent adoptions, restraining orders, misdemeanor, criminal defense and equine law.

Ms. Shapiro pursued her undergraduate degree at the University of Rhode Island, where she received the A. Robert Rainville Leadership Award and the President's Award for Academic Excellence. She then attended Roger Williams University School of Law, where she received the CALI Award for her contributions to the school's immigration clinic as well as for her seminar, "Genocide & Atrocity Crimes."

She obtained her Juris Doctor in 2012, and the Massachusetts Bar Association admitted her to practice that same year. She is also admitted to practice before the U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts, the Board of Immigration Appeals and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit.

Active in her legal community and passionate about protecting the rights of others, Ms. Shapiro is a member of the Human Rights Campaign, the Women's Bar Association of Massachusetts and the American Immigration Lawyers Association, which awarded her the Pro Bono Star in 2015. She is also co-founder of Citizens Against Trafficking, and she has worked tirelessly to bring awareness to this plight on society.

A widely recognized leader in her field, Ms. Shapiro has written extensively and conducted numerous lectures and continuing legal education seminars across her region on a variety of topics related to immigration law, sex trafficking and human rights.

Practice Areas
  • 100%Immigration
Focus Areas

Asylum, Naturalization & Citizenship


top-imageSelected to Rising Stars for 2 years

Rising Stars: 2018 - 2019

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About Melanie Shapiro

Admitted: 2012, Massachusetts

Professional Webpage:


  • Public Interest Scholar, Roger Williams University School of Law
  • CALI excellence achievement award, Immigration Clinic, Roger Williams University School of Law
  • Pro Bono Star, AILA , 2014

Bar/Professional Activity:

  • Massachusetts Women’s Bar Association, Member
  • First Circuit Court of Appeals
  • American Immigration Lawyers Association, Member
  • Immigration Court
  • Board of Immigration Appeals
  • Massachusetts
  • Federal District Court of Massachusetts

Pro bono/Community Service:

  • Human Rights Campaign, Member
  • Irish International Immigrant Center-- Haitian TPS clinic, 2016
  • Boston Mayor's Office on Immigrant Advancement volunteer consultations, 2017
  • LGBT Asylum Task Force Probono representation , 2015

Scholarly Lectures/Writings:

  • Pursuing one-parent SIJS cases , Author , Navigating One-Parent SIJS Cases , AILA VOICE , Immigration, 2015
  • Seminar, “Genocide & Atrocity Crimes”
  • From 1980 to 2009, prostitution in Rhode Island was decriminalized.1 Prostitution was not prohibited or regulated by law if it was performed indoors.2 The lack of laws or regulations created a unique and permissive legal, economic, and cultural environment for the growth of sex businesses.3 Although a few counties in Nevada have legalized prostitution,4 no other state or county has decriminalized prostitution in recent decades.5 During the twentynine year period from 1980 to 2009, sexual exploitation and violence against women and girls were integrated into the economic development of Rhode Island’s urban areas.6 The growth of sex businesses led to the capital city of Providence being called the “red light district” of New England.7 The lack of laws controlling prostitution impeded police from investigating and stopping serious crimes and prevented officials from arresting pimps, traffickers, and sex buyers.8 According to Luis CdeBaca, former Ambassador at Large to Combat Human Trafficking and Director of the Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons in the U.S. State Department, decriminalized prostitution created a “zone of impunity in which police [could not] go, and where traffickers [could] exploit their prey.”9 This Article describes the growth of sex businesses in Rhode Island from 1980 to 2009 and the harmful activities—particularly violence against women, sexual exploitation, and slavery—that were endemic to it. It describes how individual criminals, organized crime groups, and mainstream business people, such as landlords and lawyers, exploited women and girls for profit and pleasure. For over a decade, from 1998 to 2009, the violent nature of these businesses became increasingly known to law enforcement, other government officials, and the public.10 With increased awareness, momentum grew for legal reform to prohibit prostitution, sex trafficking, and the employment of underage teens in sex businesses.11 In 2009, the Rhode Island General Assembly passed three unprecedented laws to end these practices.12 This Article on decriminalized prostitution is important for contemporary debate. Around the world, there are both small groups and large agencies, such as UN Women13 and Amnesty International, that advocate for the decriminalization of prostitution.14 One such group is suing the state of California to decriminalize prostitution using the same legal argument and strategy that created decriminalized prostitution in Rhode Island in 1980.15 The authors of this Article believe the findings reported herein on Rhode Island’s twenty-nine year experience with decriminalization are an important contribution to the debate., Author , Decriminalized Prostitution: Impunity for Violence and Exploitation, Wake Forest Law Review , 2017

Educational Background:

  • University of Rhode Island, Bachelor’s Degree in Women’s Studies, summa cum laude, with honors, President's Award for Academic Excellence, Mother Jones Award, Robert A. Rainville Leadership Award, 2009
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Office Location for Melanie Shapiro

60 Guild St
Ste. 2
Norwood, MA 02062

Phone: 781-461-0100

Fax: 781-461-0105

Melanie Shapiro:

Last Updated: 12/3/2019

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