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Let My 30 Years of Experience in Family Law
and U.S. Immigration Law Work For You

EXPERIENCE THAT MATTERS

Get the RESULTS You and Your Family Deserve.
Honest, Compassionate, and Professional Family Law Legal Counsel!

Florida Family Law

Divorce, child custody, child support and paternity actions can be extremely stressful and difficult. These types of family proceedings are often very adversarial and strike to the very core of a person’s sense of identity.

Immigration

Foreign nationals who desire to live and work in the United States, either temporarily or permanently, often find the maze of U.S. immigration laws and regulations very confusing and difficult to understand.

Experienced and Compassionate

At Mentor Law Firm, our main goal is to assist our clients through this difficult transition with the least possible expense and mental suffering. The key to this formula is resolution rather than extensive, costly litigation.

MEET KAREN MENTOR

Karen Mentor Attorney PhotoA graduate of Brooklyn Law School, Ms. Mentor was admitted to the New Jersey Bar in 1987 and to the Florida Bar in 2003. She holds a Master of Arts from New York University in Arabic Literature and a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Connecticut in French (Magna Cum Laude; Phi Beta Kappa). While in law school she completed an internship at the (legacy) Immigration and Naturalization Service in New York City.

Ms. Mentor is a member of the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) as well as co-chair of the Martin County Bar Association Immigration Committee.

Our Areas Of Practice

Florida Family Law

My family law practice focuses on Florida dissolution of marriage, child custody, time-sharing and child support, paternity, enforcement, and post-judgment modification of marital settlement agreements and custody determinations.

Divorce

The issues surrounding divorce involve equitable distribution of marital property, support (alimony) and, if there are minor children, a parenting plan that addresses parental responsibility, time-sharing and child support. “Equitable distribution” does not necessarily mean a 50/50 split of all assets. If a case goes to trial, the judge will apply the factors outlined in the Florida Statutes to arrive at a determination as to what is equitable. Since the outcome may be unpredictable, many parties opt to settle their differences in a pretrial mediation.

Child Custody

The term “custody” has been removed from the Florida Statutes, and the courts must now make determinations as to a minor child’s best interest in accordance with Section 61.13 as to a suitable parenting plan that addresses time-sharing, child support and parental responsibility. When most parents hear the word “custody,” they think of which parent has been designated the primary residential parent. This determination is an important one, since it will inform other aspects of the parenting plan such as the child’s school district, driving responsibilities, weekend and holiday access, and other issues.

Child Support

Child support in Florida is more or less formulaic, based on the parties’ net earnings and the amount of overnights a child spends with each parent in a calendar year. Several factors may affect the calculation of child support, however, such as payments in kind for day care or health insurance and a parent’s earning or earning potential. An experienced family lawyer can help either the payor or payee in determining the appropriate amount of child support. Since child support orders often result in enforcement or contempt proceedings, it is important to take all factors into account.

Paternity Actions

Paternity actions in Florida may be initiated by either parent to seek a judicial determination of a father’s parentage, as well as a parenting plan that establishes the minor child’s primary residence, time-sharing, parental responsibility and child support. Fathers are frequently the petitioner in paternity or disestablishment of paternity actions. The fact of a man’s parentage is easily established with a DNA test which, if positive, will result in a Judgment of Paternity. As in dissolution proceedings, a court must remain guided by the minor child’s best interest.

Immigration

Foreign nationals who desire to live and work in the United States, either temporarily or permanently, often find the maze of U.S. immigration laws and regulations very confusing and difficult to understand.

Deportation

Deportation, or removal, is a federal administrative law proceeding that takes place before an immigration judge. Removal proceedings are initiated by the Department of Homeland Security by serving a noncitizen with a “Notice to Appear” (“NTA”) that outlines the basis for removal. Removal proceedings may be initiated against undocumented individuals or against lawful permanent residents who have committed certain crimes. The individual is often detained during the pendency of proceedings, and may or may not qualify for a bond. If you are served with an NTA, it is important to consult with an experienced immigration attorney to evaluate potential relief that may be available to you to avoid deportation (removal) and may possibly result in a waiver or in lawful permanent residence.

Family Petitions

US citizens or lawful permanent residents are entitled to file Alien Relative Petitions for their family members to acquire green cards. Such applications are subject to numerical quotas for different categories, such as the spouse or child of a lawful permanent resident, unmarried son or daughter of lawful permanent resident, et cetera. “Immediate relative” petitions, or those seeking status for a spouse, child or parent of a US citizen, are not subject to such numerical quotas and are therefore entitled to “adjust status” to lawful permanent resident without waiting for a priority date to become current. The beneficiary of a family petition must either adjust status (if inside the United States and if eligible) or process for the immigrant visa at a U.S. embassy or consulate in their home country. In every case, the beneficiary of an Alien Relative petition must prove that he or she is admissible as an immigrant in order to obtain a green card.

Naturalization

The law surrounding citizenship and naturalization is extremely complex. Many of our cases have involved determinations of U.S. citizenship, either by birth or by derivation (i.e., if a parent naturalizes or if a child is adopted by a U.S. citizen). In some cases, individuals have resided in the U.S. for decades, only to learn that they cannot prove citizenship and therefore cannot obtain a U.S. passport or even a state-issued driver’s license. In terms of naturalization, USCIS often denies applications because of a lack of “good moral character” or some other disqualifying factor. A request for reconsideration or a lawsuit against the U.S. government often yields a positive result.

Business Visas

Business visas may grant the recipient the right to reside and work in the United States either temporarily or permanently. In some cases a foreign national may seek to obtain a temporary working visa that can be converted to an immigrant visa at a later date, such as the L-1A being converted to an Employment-based First Preference green card. Some temporary working visas, such as the E-1 or E-2 (Treaty Trader or Treaty Investor) do not lead to permanent residence but are not subject to numerical quotas and can be renewed indefinitely.

WHAT OUR CLIENTS SAY ABOUT US

Successful Visa application

Easy communication, thorough work, good guidance through process. I could not have chosen a more professional lawyer to guide me through the process.

Chica

L1 visa renewed in less than 2 weeks

From the initial phone consultation you can tell why she is highly recommended by her peers. She has been in this field for over 25 years and still work as if its her first case. She is very passionate in helping us getting our L1 visa renewed. My case is quite complicated as it involves a lot of business technicality and it require thorough study and analysis. But with Karen, she always make it feel there is a solution to every situation.

Guy

Immigration Services

Karen Mentor and the team in her law firm were very thorough and supportive during all the steps involved in my application for naturalization.  If you are looking for an attorney that combines both a deep knowledge of immigration law and great communication skills, Karen is the person to contact.

Girl

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