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Alan Lee

Attorney Profile

Top Rated Immigration Attorney in New York, NY

Alan Lee & Arthur Lee, Attorneys at Law
408 8th Avenue, Suite 5A
New York, NY 10001
Phone: 212-564-9496
Fax: 212-268-1679
Email: Alan Lee
Selected to Super Lawyers: 2011, 2013 - 2022
Licensed in New York Since: 1982
Practice Areas: Immigration: Consumer
Attorney Profile

Alan Lee exclusively practices immigration law and covers the spectrum from non-immigrant visas such as H-1B and L-1, to federal court litigation including employment and family-based matters, investment immigration, asylum, and citizenship. He holds an AV preeminent rating in the Martindale-Hubbell Law Directory and is on the Bar Register of Preeminent Lawyers, the highest rating in both legal ability and ethical standards as judged by his peers. He has successfully concluded cases before USCIS, DOS, DOL, Consuls, Immigration Courts, Federal Circuit and District Courts, BIA, BALCA, USCIS Appeals Adjudication Office, and Regional Commissioners. Mr. Lee has authored approximately 2,025 legal writings in newspapers and journals on immigration, including Interpreter Releases, Immigration Daily, and Chinese language dailies World Journal and Sing Tao. His staff has fluency in multiple dialects of Chinese.

White Papers

  • IMMIGRATION NEWS THAT YOU CAN USE – NATURALIZATION PRACTICE AND PROCEDURE; THE NOVEMBER RETROGRESSIVE VISA CHART; H-1B BY HIGHEST SALARY STILL BEING ADVOCATED BY BIDEN ADMINISTRATION; BAN ON TRAVEL FROM CANADA AND MEXICO ENDING IN STAGES; NEW YORK STATE A (2021) - Alan Lee, Immigration Daily, 10/19/21, highlights multiple immigration topics including reasons why the visa bulletin retrogressed in the employment based categories and new efforts to protect immigrants on state and federal levels.
  • IMMIGRATION NEWS THAT YOU CAN USE – OCTOBER “SURPRISE” IN THE OPPOSITE DIRECTION AS DOS FAILS TO PARTNER WITH USCIS; PROOF OF COVID VACCINATION BEGINNING OCTOBER 1 APPEARS ONLY PROSPECTIVE; $3.5 TRILLION RECONCILIATION PACKAGE HAS HOPE FOR MANY UNDOCUMENT (2021) - Alan Lee, Immigration Daily, 9/16/21, goes over the Democratic budget reconciliation package’s immigration provisions to be presented to the Senate parliamentarian along with a proposed settlement beneficial to H-1B market research analyst cases which have been highly susceptible to denial among other topics.
  • Immigration news that you can use-Preserving F-2B preference at the NVC or consulate; Immigration video interviews; New ground for denying China NIV applications; New policies on EAD’s, RFE’s, and expedites; Possible actions for I-601A cases stymied by Ca (2021) - Alan Lee, Immigration Daily, 7/12/21, points out routes to follow when attempting to preserve a preference category where naturalization is disadvantageous for the pending petition, or where I-601A applicants are stymied by the inability to have removal cases administratively closed by the Atty. Gen. decision in Castro-Tum among other items.
  • IMMIGRATION NEWS THAT YOU CAN USE – CHANGE IN CASE FLOW PROCESSING BEFORE THE IMMIGRATION COURTS; SWORN STATEMENT SAMPLE WITHOUT NOTARY IN THE TIME OF PANDEMIC; KEEPING F-2B CATEGORIZATION WHEN PETITIONER NATURALIZES; H-1B COMPUTER CASE TREATMENT THIS YEA (2021) - Alan Lee, Immigration Daily, 4/27/21, explains the change of procedure in immigration courts allowing for challenges to removability to be litigated before immigrants have to put in all applications for relief, among other topics.
  • BIDEN PLAN FOR UNDOCUMENTED AND THOSE WITH REMOVAL ORDERS IS GENEROUS (2021) - Alan Lee, Immigration Daily, 2/23/21, a look at the Biden framework of a plan to legalize undocumented immigrants that would later fall by the wayside.
  • Article “BIDEN TO DO LIST – TWO VERY IMPORTANT ITEMS (2021) - Alan Lee, Immigration Daily, 1/2021, looks at the important things that a Biden administration should take care of in the first days of the administration in the immigration context.
  • S386/HR1044 - Passed By Senate - Goes To Conference With Part That Must Be Fixed (2020) - Alan Lee, Immigration Daily, 12/7/20, remarks that – on the bill that would shift most of the employment-based visa numbers to India-born for a number of years yet allow for early filing of I-485 adjustment of status cases with work and travel authorization, a crucial late amendment punishing possibly millions of Chinese nationals with inadmissibility and bar against adjustment of status to permanent residence should be stricken as the just approved Senate Bill goes back to the House for reconciliation before passage.
  • Comment on USCIS proposed regulation, “Modification of Registration Requirement for Petitioners Seeking to File Cap Subject H-1B Petitions”, RIN 1615-AC61 (2020) - Alan Lee, Immigration Daily, 12/3/20, comments on the above proposed regulation which would allow USCIS to first give favor to the selection of H-1B registrations or petitions (if the registration system is suspended) on the basis of petitioners offering higher wage levels – that there is no correlation of wage to what is a specialty occupation; that this blatantly prices small companies out of the H-1B market; that small companies are drivers of the American economy and innovation; that this works discrimination against US workers on the same level who could earn less than their H-1B counterparts for no other reason than this bill; and that the Administration has proposed this regulation with intent to damage the H-1B program.
  • Interim Final Regulations (IFRs) on Wage Hikes by DOL and on H-1Bs by DHS and Some of the Flaws of Their Logic (2020) - Alan Lee, Immigration Daily, 10/19/20, critiques as heavily flawed these rushed through regulations which were finalized without OMB review or period of notice and comment, and that in the last desperate days of the Trump presidency, it has become increasingly clear that the administration sees the handwriting on the wall and is speeding up actions to indelibly stamp the nation with regulations thrusting the nation backwards on immigration, race relations, the environment, women’s rights, gay rights, foreign relations, and America’s role on the world stage.
  • WITH JUSTICE GINSBURG GONE, DREAMERS DESPERATELY NEED A POLITICAL SOLUTION (2020) - Alan Lee, Immigration Daily, 9/23/20, looks at the plight of undocumented immigrants who came to the US as children (DACA members or Dreamers) following the passing away of Justice Ruth Ginsburg - such ensconcing a conservative majority on the Supreme Court so that relief there is blocked, and noting that the only solution for relief now appears to be political, and that the reelection of Donald Trump would ensure that they would either be used as the ultimate bargaining chip for a Trump administration to ram through its entire program of immigration restructuring or failing that, all would be subject to removal proceedings.
  • Fort USA Arises In The Gloaming (2020) - Alan Lee, Immigration Daily, 8/14/20, compares the state of America in the world during the Trump presidency to an American fort at dusk where all the inhabitants look inward while trying to repel the rest of the world and where he tries to turn back the clock to an earlier era replete with discrimination, Jim Crow laws, and white supremacy while ceding America’s number one position in the world to other countries by allowing Russia to move unimpeded in conflict zones and becoming the feared powerbroker in the Middle East, acting as a paper dragon against China’s march to dominance over much of Asia and parts of Africa, and by hobbling the actions of the U.S. Armed Forces.
  • REPEATEDLY CALLING IT A CHINESE VIRUS IS RACIST AND A DEFLECTION OF BLAME (2020) - Alan Lee, Immigration Daily, 3/20/20, calls upon President Trump to stop calling the novel coronavirus the “Chinese virus” citing the long history of racism against Chinese in the United States; how his repeatedly saying it such has inflamed Americans against persons of East Asian origin in the country to the point of racial violence; and that his assignment of blame is in truth a diversion from the horrible job that he has done from the very beginning to control the virus.
  • Intersection of the Relief Act and Fairness for High Skilled Immigrants Act of 2019 (2020) - Alan Lee, Immigration Daily, 1/2/20, discusses the progress on both bills designed to give relief for retrogressed visa categories, especially EB-2 and EB-3 preferences for those with advanced degrees and those with bachelors degrees or two years relevant experience respectively. The article especially focuses on The Fairness for High Skilled Immigrants Act which saw a recent Senate compromise under which aliens who are eligible for adjustment of status except for visa retrogression would be allowed to file for early adjustment of status and gain employment, job transferability, and travel privileges while their applications are pending. They would not receive green cards until their priority dates became current. The compromise was necessary as the legislation would have skewed employment-based immigration heavily in favor of one country to the disadvantage of the rest of the world. The leading senators plan to obtain a unanimous consent in the Senate before having the House vote on the new amendments (the House previously passed the legislation in 2019), and if compromised and passed, the Fairness legislation would go to President Trump for signature.
  • The Art Of The Deal In Making The Wall (2019) - Alan Lee, Immigration Daily, 1/23/19, looks at the partial government shutdown by President Trump, the disaster of risking the livelihoods of 800,000 federal workers in an extended shutdown to obtain funding for the promised wall for his base, the political maneuvering going on, his lack of leverage, and suggests possible solutions to entice Democrats such as permanent status with or without road to citizenship for an expanded 1.8 million DACA class, or offering the present 700,000 DACA members permanent status with the road to citizenship and some status for the 300,000 TPS members for the next 3 years.
  • Why the Trump/Republican Party Grand Plan Won’t Work – A Prelude To 2018 and 2020 (2017) - Alan Lee, Immigration Daily, 7/31/17, postulates that the forces that came together for a Trump victory in 2016 will no longer be present in 2018 and 2020 for the midterm and presidential elections, and that the Republican Party will have to change direction and oppose President Trump for it to have any chance at all for victory. The article looks at the uncovered lies of the president that his health care plan would be cheaper and cover more people when the opposite was revealed by the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) figures, and on his campaign focus to rid the country of violent lawbreaking undocumented immigrants when his actions have been to remove all of the undocumented as lawbreakers. It also enumerates other reasons for which Mr. Trump and the Republicans were elected and that actions to resolve those reasons have not been satisfactory. Moderate whites, blacks, Hispanics, Bernie Sander supporters, and LGBT community members lulled by broken promises to them and uninterested in voting or reluctant to vote for Mrs. Clinton will not be there to support Mr. Trump in either upcoming election, and the Republican Party will lose barring reversal of its strategy of appealing only to “angry white guys” to keep control of Congress.

About Alan Lee

First Admitted: 1977, Ohio

Professional Webpage:


  • Rated AV in Martindale-Hubbell Law Directory since 1994, AV Preeminent rating since 2010 with legend of highest possible rating in both legal ability and ethical standards, & in the Bar Register of Pre-eminent Lawyers since 2011.  Also named Client Champion Platinum 2018 - 2021 by Martindale-Hubbell. Awarded twice by the government of the Republic of China in 1985 for outstanding work in immigration and human rights affairs; selected for Who's Who in American Law; honorary editor of newspaper, Pakistan Calling; Sidney A. Levine Award winner at Cleveland Marshall College of Law for best legal writing in 1976/77. Recognized as one of New York area's "Top Rated Lawyers" by Martindale-Hubbell for 2012, 2014 - 2021., Martindale-Hubbell

Scholarly Lectures/Writings

  • Lectures before student groups at universities, colleges, and institutes on immigration laws.  Approximately 2,025 legal writings in newspapers and journals on immigration law; and a regular contributor to Martindale-Hubbell's Ask-a-Lawyer program.

Educational Background

  • B.A. graduate in English of UCLA 1973 and J.D. graduate of Cleveland-Marshall College of Law, 1977. Ohio bar, 1977; New York bar, 1982.

Pro bono/Community Service

  • Appearances before community groups, universities, colleges and institutes on immigration issues of interest to them. Participant in Ask-A-Lawyer program of LexisNexis/Martindale-Hubbell since 2013.   Before moving to New York, staff attorney in Bowling Green, Ohio, for Ohio Migrant Legal Action Program (OMLAP) & then lead attorney in Bowling Green for its successor, Advocates for Basic Legal Equality (ABLE).

Other Outstanding Achievements

  • Firstland Int'l v. INS successfully challenged Legacy INS' policy of over 40 years of revoking approval of immigrant visa petitions under a nebulous standard of law.  It was short-lived, however, as it was legislatively overturned by the Bush administration. Yet Firstland lives on as precedent that the government must comply with nondiscretionary duties established in law, and such failure is reviewable in federal courts.
  • Matter of Leacheng International Inc. established nation-wide standards on the definition of “doing business” for multinational executives and managers to gain immigration benefits.


  • Matter of Leacheng International Inc., 26 I&N Dec. 532 (AAO 2015); Firstland International v. INS, 377 F.3d 127 (2d Cir. 2004);  Chavan v. Drysdale, 513 F.Supp.990 (NDNY 1981). 


  • News blurbs/Q&As are posted on our website, on a weekly basis

Bar/Professional Activity

  • Panel expert in seminars of the Immigration Law Weekly in areas of labor certifications and litigated employment cases.

Representative Clients

  • Withheld for client privacy

Special Licenses/Certifications

  • Practice before governmental agencies dealing with immigration law such as Department of Homeland Security, U.S. Department of State, and Department of Labor - including Visa Office and consul posts, Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA), Administrative Appeals Office (AAO), and Board of Labor Certification Appeals (BALCA).  Licensed to appear before Southern, Eastern and Western District Courts in New York and Second Circuit Court of Appeals


  • “New Texas Preliminary Injunction Against Prosecutorial Discretion Focused on Detention Only; Visa Chart Largely Humdrum for September Except for Indians – Will There Be an October Surprise? H-1b Restrictions Continuing under Biden Administration; Multiple Reports on Dearth of F-1 Visa Interest Around the World; Congressional Research Service Report Shows in Absentia Rate for Hearings Only 17%.” Alan Lee, Immigration Daily, 8/25/21, looks at multiple topics including the misleading way that the Executive Office for Immigration Review counts those not showing up for hearings to make it appear higher than the actual total, and how and why H-1B restrictions are continuing under the Biden Administration., 2021
  • “IMMIGRATION NEWS THAT YOU CAN USE – NEW STUDENTS FROM CHINA TO BE ADMITTED AND GUIDANCE FOR DISTANCE LEARNING, EOIR RE-OPENINGS, H-1B REGISTRATIONS FOR 2021 AN ALL-TIME HIGH, SSA NO MATCH LETTERS NIXED”, ENTREPRENEUR PAROLE PROGRAM RETURNS, EXPANDED BIOMETRIC RULE NIXED, BIDEN BACKUP PLAN FOR LEGALIZATION, TIPS IN DEALING WITH THE NVC” Alan Lee, Immigration Daily, 6/1/21, highlights the bar being lifted on entry for new students from China and the biometrics rule being abandoned that might even have forced US citizens sponsoring persons financially to submit to having fingerprints and photographs taken., 2021
  • “S386/HR1044 – Passed By Senate – Goes to Conference with Part That Must be Fixed” Alan Lee, Immigration Daily, 12/7/20, outlines the flaw in the proposed legislation that would have basically given most of the employment-based immigrant visa numbers to one nationality in future years., 2020
  • Recommendations for U.S.C.I.S. Reopening Offices During Covid-19  Alan Lee, Immigration Daily, 5/7/20, gives a list of recommendations on how USCIS can reopen its offices as safely as possible during the pandemic including how to handle the lines, elevators, contacts between USCIS staff workers and between USCIS and the public., 2020
  • The Importance of Setting the Record Straight on East Coast Infections – It’s the Europeans; Why not just excuse the LCA posting requirement during the Pandemic? Alan Lee, Immigration Daily, 4/16/20, takes a look at the true cause of the East Coast Covid-19 infections as being European-based in the author’s attempt to tamp down the rising anti-Asian sentiment being egged on by the Trump Administration., 2020
  • Coronavirus China Travel Ban Reveals Prejudice Against Parents And Six Nation Ban Hodgepodge Thinking  Alan Lee, Immigration Daily, 2/5/20, considers the coronavirus travel ban and that the Trump Administration devalued the worth of parents of US citizens by placing them under the ban while US immigration law has always regarded parents as invaluable as being part of the “immediate relative” category to US citizens (parents, spouses, and children under the age of 21 and unmarried)., 2020
  • S.2603, The Relief Act, In The Season Of Hope; Two Proposed Regulations Likely To Become Law; December Visa Chart Movement And Prognostication; Stockwell Lives. Alan Lee, Immigration Daily, 12/4/19, a multi-topic article highlighting a visa bill, S.2603, that would have fairly distributed and increased the number of immigrant visas, but was ultimately not passed by Congress., 2019
  • "Naturalize Now!" Alan Lee, Immigration Daily, 7/30/19, seeks to encourage everyone who is eligible to begin the naturalization process now as USCIS announces changes to the naturalization civics test with an implementation date in December 2020 or early 2021 as there is a presumption that in the age of Republican politics and a president wishing to reduce immigrant voting that the test will be much harder to pass, and even USCIS’s memorandum describing the change purpose is filled with phrases and sentences hinting that adjudication of the test will be harder. It is now taking a year or more in many USCIS offices to complete the naturalization procedure., 2019
  • "Examination of EB-2 Visa Demand Vis-a-Vis H.R. 3012," Alan Lee, Interpreter Releases, Vol. 89, No. 10, 3/5/12; "Important Developments in Labor Certification Applications," Alan Lee, Interpreter Releases, Vol. 88, No. 6, 2/7/11; "The Renewed Hope for Immigration Legislation in 2011," Alan Lee, Interpreter Releases, Vol. 88, No. 2, 1/10/11; "Legalization is Alive but has a January 31, 2010, Deadline in Underpublicized "Known to the Government" Settlement," Alan Lee, Arthur Lee, and Melissa Paquette and edited by Robert Pauw, Interpreter Releases, Vol. 86, No. 47, 12/14/09;  "In Absentia Hearings and Proper Service of NTAs and NOHs with Emphasis on Second Circuit Law Development, Alan Lee, Interpreter Releases, Vol. 84, No. 37, 9/24/07;  "The Bush Temporary Worker Proposal and Comparative Pending Legislation: an Analysis," Alan Lee, Interpreter Releases, Vol. 81, No. 15, 4/12/04
  • “I-601A Expansion Rule Comes Out To Cover All Case Classes with Eligibility to Immigrate Including Family Members And Those with Removal Orders” Alan Lee, The Immigration Daily, 8/1/16; “The Peter Liang Case – A Potential Horror for Democrats and Immigration Reform” Alan Lee, The Immigration Daily, 2/22/16; "You Can And Should Have Input On U.S.C.I.S.’s Upcoming “Extreme Hardship” Interpretation For Its Policy Manual" Alan Lee The Immigration Daily, 11/12/15;  "Landscape for Undocumented Immigrant Relief Appearing Bleaker - I-601A Looking Brighter" Alan Lee, The Immigration Daily, 6/2/15., 2016
  • “A Sense of Timing on Available Numbers under Senate Bill 744 (Comprehensive Immigration Reform” Alan Lee, Interpreter Releases, Vol. 90, No. 20, 5/20/13, 2013

Industry Groups

  • Immigration Law
  • Nationality Law
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Office Location for Alan Lee

408 8th Avenue
Suite 5A
New York, NY 10001

Last Updated: 5/15/2022

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