Immigration Legal Services

CARECEN’s legal department helps community members navigate the confusing and intimidating immigration process. The program seeks to facilitate Latino immigrants’ transition to the United States, reunite families, secure work authorization and economic security, and seek legal relief and justice for victims of crimes and abuse. Specifically, the low- or no-cost services provided include assistance with naturalization, family visa petitions, consular processing, obtaining and maintaining Temporary Protected Status, and filing for U Visas. In addition to direct services, CARECEN’s legal department educates community members through “Know Your Rights” forums on topics including immigration, civil rights, and notario fraud.

Annually, our legal staff provides direct service to more than 3,000 community members in the following areas:

  • Assisting eligible youth to apply for deferred action (click here for more info)
  • Assisting eligible Lawful Permanent Residents in applying for U.S. citizenship.
  • Assisting with renewal of Employment Authorization Documents.
  • Assisting residents in obtaining and maintaining Temporary Protected Status (TPS).
  • Helping families reunite through assistance with family visa petitions, adjustment of status and consular processing.
  • Assisting eligible clients obtain Lawful Permanent Residence under the provisions of the Nicaraguan and Central American Relief Act (NACARA).
  • Obtaining legal relief for victims of criminal acts under the U Visa program.
  • Holding individual consultations, educational workshops and immigration clinics to provide information on legalization under existing laws and proposed measures for reform.
  • Providing referrals of complex immigration cases to pro bono and low cost attorneys.

NOTE: CARECEN’s current immigration service schedule has changed, as of January 1, 2018.  Please see below for our new schedule:

9am - 11am:  Immigration Consultations, Brief Services, and Citizenship Screenings
**Brief Services include, but are not limited to: Residency Renewals, Work Permit Renewals, TPS Renewals, Change of Address with USCIS, etc.
1pm - 3pm:  Immigration Consultations, Brief Services, and Citizenship Screenings

9am - 11am:  Immigration Consultations, Brief Services, and Citizenship Screenings
1pm - 3pm:   Immigration Consultations, Brief Services, and Citizenship Screenings

By-appointment Immigration Consultations are available on the first and third Saturdays of every month, excluding holidays and other closings.  Pre-payment is required to reserve your appointment.  Please call us at 202-328-9799 to make an appointment and check the next available date.

Bilingual Dispute Resolution Clinic

As part of an initiative launched in 2011, in partnership with the D.C. Superior Court, CARECEN offers bilingual dispute resolution services on-site twice a month to individuals with employment, consumer, tenant, and other issues.

This is a free, by-appointment clinic in CARECEN’s offices, held on the second and fourth Wednesday of every month. Community members with disputes involving unpaid wages, neighbor conflicts, tenant problems (security deposits and repairs), consumer problems (with vendors, contractors, auto shops, etc.), or other monies owed between individuals are pre-screened by CARECEN staff and scheduled for interviews with the Bilingual Dispute Resolution Specialist the day of the clinic. To be assisted during the clinic, at least one of the parties involved in the dispute must live or do business in D.C.

Assistance to Crime Victims

Through this program, CARECEN informs Latinos who have been victims of crime or suffered as a result of a crime (such as domestic violence, violent crimes or sexual assault) about their rights and provides direct services to crime victims including applying for compensation and screening for immigration services.

Visit us to obtain services or call us at 202.328.9799 to make an appointment.

For more information on our clients, please visit Who We Serve.


success rate

148 out of 152 reported


Clients served

609 Consultations

458 Citizenship screenings

916 Cases processed

814 Unique cases


Services provided

1067 Intakes

548 Brief services


19 U-Visas for victims of crime


78 Family Petitions

33 Adjustments of status, plus 7 removal of conditions

65 Consular Processing