Matthew Blaisdell

Attorney Profile

Top Rated Immigration Attorney in Brooklyn, NY

Matthew Blaisdell, Esq.
 | 159 20th Street, Suite 1B 206
Brooklyn, NY 11232
Phone: 347-352-9573
Selected To Rising Stars: 2018 - 2020
Licensed Since: 2010
Practice Areas:
  • Immigration: Consumer (50%),
  • Immigration: Business (50%)
    Attorney Profile

    Matthew Blaisdell, Esquire, is a general immigration practice based in Brooklyn, NY. In addition to his practice, Matthew is an adjunct professor and is deeply involved in advocacy related to professional ethics and consumer protection.

    • We provide ongoing, in-depth consulting, at a flat rate, on a full range of legal immigration services.
    • Our focus is on developing a plan designed to accomplish your individual goals.
    • We won’t push you into a certain type of case, but will empower you to make decisions that are in your best interest.

    Our practice is guided by respect for our clients. I have been deeply involved with legislation at local and state levels to protect foreign nationals from exploitation in immigration services, and I have long been active on these topics on a national level. These principles are incorporated into a process that is designed to identify the strategy that best fits your individual goals.

    While the solution is sometimes straightforward, for others it may require a longer period of dialogue and consideration. Rather than charge you for a single meeting or call, we will charge a flat fee to consult with you for as long as it takes to develop a plan that you feel confident in.

    Our personalized approach is designed to evaluate your situation from all angles: family-based, employment-based or skills-based, humanitarian, removal defense, or naturalization, or general trouble-shooting. Whether you have already identified the path you wish to pursue or believe that you might benefit from additional guidance, our job is to help you get to where you want to go––doing as much or as little as you need.

    So we may reserve time and prepare for you, we request 50% of the consulting fee when making the appointment; this may be refunded if you cancel or reschedule more than 24 hours in advance, or if I do so at any time. We may provide translation in multiple languages, though additional fees are typically required.

    We understand that getting an estimate of the fees involved is helpful in deciding whether to schedule an initial consultation. While we cannot provide a quote for your case outside of a consultation (for both professional and ethical purposes), we will do our best to give you an idea of what to expect throughout this process while you consider making an appointment.

    Practice Areas
    • 50%Immigration: Consumer
    • 50%Immigration: Business
    Focus Areas

    Asylum, Naturalization & Citizenship


    top-imageSelected to Rising Stars for 3 years

    Rising Stars: 2018 - 2020

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    White Papers

  • Collaborating to Protect New Yorkers from Immigration Fraud (2016) - The PINY Resource Guide, “Collaborating to Protect New Yorkers from Immigration Fraud: A Resource Guide For Law Enforcement, Government and Advocates” provides government and law enforcement with the tools to crackdown on immigration assistance fraud. The Guide outlines the common ways consumers fall victim to this type of fraud; highlights the laws under which a case are commonly brought; details considerations for law enforcement when working with immigrant victims; provides contact information for relevant agencies engaged in helping to build enforcement cases and educate the public; and, lifts up best practices from recently enforced fraud cases. This first of its kind guide also details the new private right of action provision in the New York State law in these cases.

  • Ethical Considerations Related to Affirmatively Filing an Application for Asylum for the Purpose of Applying for Cancellation of Removal and Adjustment of Status for a Nonpermanent Resident (2017) - Use this valuable guide to navigate the ethical questions posed by the practice of submitting an affirmative asylum application with the goal of being placed in removal proceedings so that an application for cancellation of removal for nonpermanent residents may be submitted.

  • About Matthew Blaisdell

    Admitted: 2010, New York

    Professional Webpage:

    Bar/Professional Activity:

    • National Chapter of the American Immigration Lawyers Association, Ethics Committee
    • New York State Bar Association Special Committee on Immigration Representation, Member
    • Protecting Immigrant New Yorkers Task Force, Member
    • American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) National Consumer Protection and Unauthorized Practice of Law Committee, Chair & Member

    Scholarly Lectures/Writings:

    •, presenter, CLE, Enhanced Enforcement and Desperate Clients: Managing Ethical Risk in Immigration Law, Lawline, 2018
    • While attorneys play a limited role in assisting foreign nationals to obtain student visas, it is never too early to counsel international students on the ways in which they might pursue employment following the conclusion of their studies. The different processes are not intuitive, and developing a strategy in a timely manner can be essential to a student’s ability to remain in the U.S. This course, taught by veteran Immigration Law practitioner Matthew Blaisdell, will provide strategies for transitioning international students to temporary and/or permanent employment-based visas, and to help attorneys answer the questions that international students typically present. What is the legal framework for seeking employment-based visas in the U.S.? How do the processes differ in pursuing nonimmigrant (temporary) and immigrant (permanent) visas? What are the most suitable categories within each? What strategies are available for moving from a nonimmigrant to an immigrant visa? What considerations should a foreign national be considering while pursuing their studies in the U.S.? In the course of addressing these issues, the program will survey the most common immigrant and non-immigrant visas, discuss how to evaluate a client’s suitability for each, and identify special issues that should be addressed from the outset to provide the client with the best chance of success., presenter, CLE, Immigration Pathways from Studies to Employment , Lawline, 2020
    • No visa attracts more interest, frustration, and questions than the H-1B. Because it is also increasingly difficult to obtain, attorneys must be able to present alternative options for clients seeking the ability to work in the U.S., and to address a range of questions presented by clients who might be initially drawn to the H-1B. What options are similar in terms of benefits and requirements? What other nonimmigrant (temporary) visas might facilitate obtaining an immigrant (permanent) visa? What options might actually prove a better fit for the foreign national given their qualifications? This course, taught by veteran Immigration Law practitioner Matthew Blaisdell, will provide a survey of nonimmigrant visa categories that typically apply to these circumstances, including their benefits and drawbacks, timeframes, and eligibility requirements. We will also explore how several of these categories might fit with or conflict with each other. The program will provide attorneys with as much information as they need to help a client feel informed about and comfortable with the options presented., presenter, CLE, Alternatives to the H-1B Visa (update), Lawline, 2020
    • There is no dispute that each of the states has a vested interest in the regulation of the practice of law in its state. In the simplest of terms, the states essentially get to determine whether a person is a lawyer in good standing and thus permitted to practice in the state. However, when it comes to the practice of federal law, the states’ interest is not all encompassing.  The ability of attorneys to practice immigration law in any state, even those in which they are not admitted, has a regulatory, judicial and model rule foundation., co-presenter, Whose Rules Do I Follow? Ethical Concerns for Multi-jurisdictional Practitioners., American Immigration Lawyers Association, Annual Conference, 2019
    • Immigration attorneys often struggle with the demands of practicing in a highly complex area of law in which the stakes are extremely high for their clients. Many different agencies are involved, and attorneys must be fluent with the grounds of inadmissibility and removability, their related waivers, potential eligibility for benefits, potential penalties and forms of relief, and countless regulations, statutes, agency manuals, memoranda, and abstract legal concepts and principles that govern every aspect of immigration practice. In this context, attorneys must advocate for clients whose ability to live, work, remain with their families, or to avoid persecution or harm may lie in the hands of the attorney.  Questions this course will attempt to address include: What are the biggest ethical pitfalls that newer practitioners should be aware of? How can attorneys manage their practices in a manner that allows them to focus on their cases without worrying about violating the rules of professional responsibility? What are the specific disciplinary rules and processes pertaining to the practice of immigration that address these issues? This course, led by attorney Matthew Blaisdell, will provide an overview of the various regulatory schemes governing the conduct of immigration lawyers, apply these rules to basic areas of litigation and practice management, provide a background understanding of the ethical issues at play in these conflicts, and will attempt to provide a framework to assist in managing your risk of discipline., presenter, CLE, Legal Ethics: 10 Rules for New Immigration Practitioners, 2019
    • The availability of non-immigrant visas enabling foreign national students to study in the United States has long been a key component of the U.S. immigration system. Often, student visas are the mechanism by which our clients first enter the U.S., and they provide a valuable option for those already present. However, the role of the attorney is minimized in this process, and replaced by institutions with which attorneys have little-to-no access.  This course will provide a unique perspective for attorneys seeking a better understanding of not only the ins-and-outs of various non-immigrant visas for foreign national students, but also the concerns and practical realities of both students and the schools and programs with which they interact., presenter, CLE, Immigration Strategies for International, Lawline, 2018
    • In recent years, the United States legal system has regularly fluctuated in its approach to providing pathways to foreign nationals seeking to invest and develop new businesses and other enterprises within the U.S. At the same moment, that these options have become increasingly sought after. The changing priorities and levels of scrutiny, combined with increased demand, provide a strong incentive for attorneys to more closely examine the various legal immigration pathways for foreign investors and entrepreneurs.   This course, led by attorney Matthew Blaisdell, will provide an overview of the most common, and a few of the often-overlooked, options for clients seeking to launch and develop businesses and other projects in the United States, while providing the practical information you will need to help guide your clients to the option that is most appropriate for their circumstances. Please note that this course will not focus on the EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program, as such would be more appropriate for a separate course., presenter, CLE, Immigration Strategies for Investors and Entrepreneurs, 2018
    • Review the executive orders currently being litigated. Understand the constitutional challenges to those orders within current litigation. Anticipate further constitutional challenges and litigation related to the orders., presenter, CLE, Constitutional Challenges to Recent Executive Orders in Immigration , Lawline, 2017
    • The landscape of immigration law was significantly affected by the U.S. Supreme Court in 2017, and several issues of legal and policy import will be continued on the 2018 docket. Are there any significant limits to the President’s ability to refuse entry of foreign nationals into the U.S.? How long may a non-citizen be detained without a bond hearing? Can doctrines traditionally applied to criminal law be applied to civil immigration law? How far does the right to effective counsel in a criminal proceeding extend within the immigration context? To what extent can states and localities refuse to comply with federal immigration enforcement? While most of these questions were addressed, a number were left unanswered until the next term. In this course, attorney Matthew Blaisdell will examine the cases that were heard by SCOTUS in the last year, with an eye towards several decisions and issues that may be front and center in the next term, including the “travel ban” and “sanctuary cities.” He will examine a number of background issues presented in the cases, including: Article II Separation of powers and the executive authority to regulate immigration; the First Amendment establishment clause; Fifth and Fourteenth Amendment substantive due process, procedural due process, and the void for vagueness doctrine; Sixth Amendment effective assistance of counsel; the commandeering doctrine and related 10th Amendment concerns; and statutory construction disputes within the Immigration and Nationality Act., presenter, CLE, The Supreme Court Immigration Roundup (2017-2018 Term), Lawline, 2018
    • Protection under the United Nations Convention against Torture is a rare form of international human rights protection implemented into U.S. law. However, it substantially from asylum relief, and may practitioners fail to adequately grasp these fundamental differences. Additionally, given its nature as a relief of last resort for many, in addition to the foreign policy implications that come with defining torture, it is a relief that courts are often resistant to granting.   This course, led by Matthew Blaisdell, will provide an overview of the CAT and the manner in which it has been adopted into U.S. law, explain the differences between relief under asylum law and under the CAT, and explore the elements needed to establish a claim. Special attention will be paid to the cases of foreign nationals who face detention in their home countries based upon criminal conduct occurring in the U.S., presenter, CLE, Immigration Relief under the U.N. Convention against Torture, Lawline, 2017
    • Panelist on contemporary issues related to professional responsibility in immigration practice., co-presenter, AILA Monthly Meeting, Ethics Issues for New Attorneys, Asylum, and Disciplinary Issues, American Immigration Lawyers Association, New York Chapter, 2016
    • Following the presidential election of 2016, noncitizens face high levels of uncertainty regarding their ability to enter and remain in the U.S. Likewise, attorneys must understand this new landscape in developing legal strategies for clients seeking to live, work, study, or conduct other activities in the U.S. Policy makers at the state and local levels must also contend with complex and politically fraught issues affecting their constituents, while determining how they will interact with a new federal administration that may have different objectives.   Noncitizens and their attorneys, advocates and representatives face difficult questions in this new landscape. What changes to existing programs, such as DACA, might take place? What are some ways that the enforcement may change? How might the administration change the ways that screenings take place at the border? Who are “criminal aliens”, what are “sanctuary cities”, and what powers does the administration have to force cities to comply with its policies? How do we explain these potential changes to our clients and advise them accordingly?   This course, led by attorney Matthew Blaisdell, seeks to enable attorneys to provide strong counsel in this new, challenging environment., CLE, What Comes Next: Immigration Law and The New Administration, Lawline, 2017
    • When the President, as head of the executive branch, takes an action to implement and enforce the laws passed by Congress, we sometimes call it an ‘executive action. In such instances, the President delegates that power to the appropriate executive agencies; in the context of immigration, the relevant agencies and offices are U.S. Department of Homeland Security and the Attorney General. Decisions about how to enforce Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) are referred to as “prosecutorial discretion”, which is what it sounds like: the use of discretion to prosecute the laws.   Prosecutorial discretion therefore refers to the ability of an enforcement agency to decide how to do its job. For example, Immigration Customs and Enforcement (ICE) only has the resources to fully enforce the immigration laws against a relatively small percentage of the immigration population that is in violation of the Immigration and Nationality Act. Thus, when the ICE decides not to fully pursue enforcement in a particular case, it is favorably exercising discretion   The manner in which ICE carries out its duties is influenced by policy memorandum issued by its Director. Over the years, there have been numerous memos relating to how ICE should exercise its prosecutorial discretion. For instance, on whom should ICE focus its investigations? Who should ICE detain or allow to be admitted? Against whom should they initiate removal proceedings? Against whom should they seek removal orders?   This course, led by immigration attorney Matthew Blaisdell, seeks to provide attorneys with an understanding of the different points in the enforcement process at which they may advocate that ICE exercise its discretion in a favorable manner, as well as provide an idea of how a new President may take executive action to change the manner in which ICE exercises its discretion., presenter, CLE, Prosecutorial Discretion in Individual Immigration Cases, Lawline, 2017
    • As advocates for immigrants pursuing humanitarian-based relief, we often seek to use whatever legal means are available to secure relief for our clients, whose life, freedom, and/or ability to remain in the country they grew up in may depend on securing particular benefits from USCIS or in obtaining relief from an immigration judge. However, such advocacy must be guided by the rules governing attorney conduct, including confidentiality, candor before the court, unauthorized practice of law, and conduct prejudicial to the administration of justice, to name but a few.   The desire to secure benefits and relief for clients in desperate circumstances may cause attorneys to step into ethical grey areas. For example, some clients may be eligible to apply for a form of relief that may lead to permanent residence, but only if they find themselves before a judge in removal (deportation) proceedings. This has caused some attorneys to file applications for asylum specifically to place their clients into such proceedings. What are the ethical considerations surrounding these practices, and what is the possibility that attorneys may face discipline? This course, led by attorney Matthew Blaisdell, examines these and related practices in the context of pursuing humanitarian-based relief, as well as issues involving the use of translators and paralegals, working with children and victims of crimes or persecution, and dual representation, with the objective of empowering attorneys to better manage their risk while advocating for their clients. , presenter, CLE, Ethical Considerations in Applying for Humanitarian-Based Immigration Relief, Lawline, 2017
    • Survey of nonimmigrant visa alternatives to the H-1B classification., presenter, CLE, Alternatives to the H-1B Visa, Lawline, 2017
    • Assisting attorneys to provide effective intakes for immigrant clients., co-presenter, Improving the Client Intake Process, American Immigration Lawyers Association, Annual Conference , 2017
    • Immigration is an extremely complex area of law, with very high stakes for your clients. Additionally, there are many special issues that often arise in working with an immigrant population. This program is intended to provide an overview of some of these issues, and to help you develop a strategy for consultations that fits both your personality and the objectives for your practice., presenter, CLE, Preparing for an Immigration Consultation , Lawline, 2015
    • Immigration attorneys often struggle with the demands of practicing in a highly complex area of law in which the stakes are extremely high for their clients. These demands are particularly difficult for those new to this area of law, who must grapple with an entirely new set of ethics-related questions: What rules govern the practice of immigration lawyers? What types of conduct are most likely to result in attorney discipline, and how does discipline occur? How can small- and solo-practitioners manage their practices a manner consistent with the relevant rules of professional responsibility? This course, led by immigration attorney Matthew Blaisdell, will provide an overview of the various regulatory schemes governing the conduct of immigration lawyers and apply them to basic areas of litigation and practice management, with a close analysis of specific, practice-related issues that immigration attorneys should become familiar with. , presenter, CLE, Immigration Ethics, Lawline, 2016
    • Overview of benefits through both USCIS and the U.S. Immigration Court system. , co-presenter, CLE, Navigating the U.S. Immigration System for Immigrant Youth, Lawline, 2016
    • Survey of relief available to minors in removal proceedings., co-presenter, CLE, Representing Unaccompanied Children in Immigration Court, Lawline, 2016
    • Presented panel on issues related to potential and recent Executive actions related to immigration benefits and protections., presenter, CLE, Implementing Executive Action on Immigration: Executive Grants of Administrative Relief, New York City Bar Association, 2015
    • LGBTQ issues have significantly affected, and are affected by, the practice of immigration. There are a number of special issues that practitioners should be aware of when working with this population, particularly in the areas of family-based cases, clients who are detained, asylum, deferred action, and parole into the United States. This program will provide both an overview and a ‘nuts-and-bolts’ approach to these issues, co-presenter, CLE, Immigration Concerns for LGBT Persons, Lawline, 2015

    Educational Background:

    • Pace Law School, 2009
    • LL.M Environmental Law, Pace Law School, 2011
    • New York City Environmental Law Leadership Institute, 2011
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    Office Location for Matthew Blaisdell

    159 20th Street
    Suite 1B 206
    Brooklyn, NY 11232

    Phone: 347-352-9573

    Matthew Blaisdell:

    Last Updated: 6/26/2020

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