Frequently Asked Questions

Do you handle only immigration and family law matters?

Yes. We are passionate about immigration and international family law, so we have tailored our practice to concentrate specifically on these areas of law. By doing so, we are able to provide our clients with an incomparable level of expertise, knowledge and efficiency. We handle all aspects of immigration and international family law matters, from custody issues to financial matters to family relocations.

How long is the initial consultation and what should I expect during this meeting?

The initial consultation typically lasts 45 minutes to an hour, depending on the complexity of your case and whether translation services are required. Please be prepared to discuss your case in detail and bring all relevant materials with you. The consultation is confidential, so please do not bring anyone who is not a necessary part of the case to the consultation. During your consultation, you will meet with an attorney who will discuss your case with you, answer any questions you have and propose courses of action to effectively resolve your case. You are under no obligation to retain the firm to represent you. If you choose to retain the firm, we will begin working on your case as soon as a retainer agreement is signed and all appropriate fees are paid.

What should I bring to my initial consultation appointment?

In order for us to thoroughly and accurately evaluate your case, please bring all materials that relate to your case to the initial consultation. This includes legal documents, personal documents, photographs, recordings, etc. that may help us get a better understanding of your case.

Do I have to be a United States citizen or legal permanent resident in order to be represented by your firm?

No, your citizenship status has no bearing on whether we can represent you. In fact, you do not even have to be a resident of Georgia in order for our firm to represent you. We represent clients from many different states and countries, domestically and overseas. For out-of-state and international clients, we work closely with local counsel in your jurisdiction to prepare your case.

Does your firm represent individuals who are presently detained by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) or Customs and Border Protection?

Yes, we handle immigration matters for individuals who are detained or arrested. While it is best to contact an attorney before being taken into custody, it is not too late to retain counsel after you or a loved one has been arrested or detained. Given the exigent circumstances, our firm handles these types of cases with special attention and urgency. If you or a loved one is presently detained, please contact an attorney immediately.

I believe the previous lawyer I hired to work on my case mishandled the case. As a result, my application was denied and I may have to leave the country. Is there anything I can do?

Unfortunately, this situation is not uncommon. Fortunately, there may be some remedies, depending on your specific situation. Our firm handles appeals for clients who are dissatisfied with the outcome of their cases. We can review your case and inform you as to whether there was an error by your previous attorney or by the court, which may have affected the outcome of your case. If so, we may be able to either file an appeal with the appropriate agency and/or litigate the matter in court in an attempt to reverse the decision.

I met my fiancée while abroad and would like for her to move to the U.S. permanently — the sooner, the better. Do we have to be married before she can move here?

No, you do not have to be married before your fiancée can move to the United States with you. There are several immigrant visas for which your fiancée may apply in order to lawfully enter the U.S., even before you are married. However, certain factors influence how quickly she may be able to obtain her visa; for example, her country of citizenship, the type of visa she applies for, and whether she has a relative U.S. citizen as a sponsor. Assuming that you are a U.S. citizen and that you sponsor her as your fiancée, the visa process should be relatively quick. Once she has entered the U.S. as an immigrant, she will eventually need to adjust her immigrant status to that of a permanent resident (i.e., green card holder) in order to remain in the country lawfully.

I moved to Georgia after my husband and I separated. Will I be able to file for divorce here, even though my husband does not live in Georgia?

Yes, you may file for divorce in Georgia so long as one of the spouses is a resident of the state for at least six months prior to the date of filing for the divorce.

I am currently paying child support to my ex-wife. She recently remarried and I believe there may be a change in her income. Will this affect my child support obligation?

This could affect your child support obligations. Generally, to modify the amount of child support you pay as the noncustodial parent, you must show that there has been a substantial change in the income or financial status of the other parent since the date of the enforcement of the original support order. Once you have shown this, your obligation to pay child support is re-evaluated, taking into account the change in financial circumstances.

After weighing all of our options, my husband and I are considering international avenues in order to grow our family. The process seems extremely overwhelming and complicated. Can your firm help facilitate the process?

Of course. For couples wishing to grow their families, Sohahong Law Group LLC specializes in adoptions, surrogacy and assisted reproduction, both domestically and internationally. We understand that the decision to conceive or adopt a child is not always an easy one, so we approach these types of cases with a heightened sense of compassion and discretion. We have experience researching and analyzing applicable domestic and international laws of various jurisdictions to ensure the most compatible and comprehensive solutions for our clients. We work closely with local counsel and agencies in different countries to identify and address potential issues that may arise during the process and thoroughly advise our clients of their rights and obligations as soon-to-be parents of a child conceived or adopted internationally. From conception to delivery, our goal is to make the process as safe, expedient and hassle-free as possible so that we can see our clients share in the joy of parenthood.

I am in a same-sex relationship and would like to marry my partner and start a family; however, same-sex marriage is not legal where we live. What options, if any, do we have?

Depending on where you reside, if marriage is not a legal option for you and your partner, you may consider a civil union, domestic partnership or another form of legal arrangement that recognizes your relationship status and confers legal benefits similar to those acquired through traditional marriage. As a same-sex couple, your options largely depend on where you and your partner reside. For example, in Georgia where neither same-sex marriage nor same-sex domestic partnerships are legally recognized, you may consider entering into a contractual arrangement as mentioned above. Our firm has experience drafting partnership agreements that cover matters of joint property ownership, allocation of assets, wills, and child custody arrangements for same-sex couples. Additionally, in Georgia, same-sex couples are not prohibited from adopting based on sexual orientation, so adoption may be an option for you to grow your family as well. But again, the laws regarding same-sex partnerships and adoption may be more or less restrictive depending on where you live.

My ex-wife and I share joint custody of our son. She recently returned to her native country with him, without my permission. Is there anything I can do to get my son back to the U.S.?

A Hague Convention application may be filed on your behalf if the country to which your son has been taken is a party to The Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction (The Hague Convention). By the terms of The Hague Convention, when a child is taken away from his or her residence without the consent of a custodial parent, the child must be promptly returned, unless the return will create a serious risk of harm to the child. However, the custodial parent must act quickly in filing a Hague Convention application as there are time limitations. If the child is taken across an international border to a country that is not a party to The Hague Convention, matters are further complicated; but, there still may be a way to have your child returned, depending on the details of your particular situation. It is in your best interest to retain counsel for international child abduction cases as they can be very contentious and drawn-out.