Varinia Guzman’s experience in business immigration includes representation of Fortune 500 and multinational corporations in various industries, emerging start-ups, mid-size companies and immigrant entrepreneurs. She provides expertise across a wide variety of employment-based nonimmigrant and immigrant petitions, and PERM labor certification, adjustment of status, consular processing and naturalization applications. Ms. Guzman also advises U.S. employers on corporate compliance, I-9 audits and employer sanctions. Her human resources and in-house immigration experience allows her insight into the business needs of global companies while connecting the bridge between immigration law and the greater business environment.
Ms. Guzman’s immigration services for clients includes:
- Nonimmigrant visas for foreign national employees of U.S. companies and entities, specifically B-1 business visitors, E-1/E-2 treaty traders/investors, E-3 visa for Australian nationals, H-1B specialty occupation workers, H-3 trainees, H-1B1 visa for nationals of Chile and Singapore, L-1A/L-1B intracompany transferees as manager/executive or specialized knowledge professional, O-1 individuals with extraordinary ability or achievement, and TN professionals under the North American Free Trade Agreement.
- PERM labor certification applications through the U.S. Department of Labor.
- Immigrant petitions for employment-based categories, including individuals with extraordinary ability, outstanding researchers or professors, multinational managers or executives, advanced degree holders, professionals or skilled workers.
- Employment-based adjustment of status or consular processing applications, including employment authorization and advance parole.
- Provisions under the American Competitiveness of the 21st Century Act of 2000 (AC21).
- Immigrant visas for immediate relatives and qualifying family members.
- K-1 fiancée visas through the U.S. Department of State.
- Conditional lawful permanent residents.
- Marriage and family-based adjustment of status or consular processing applications.
- Re-entry permits for lawful permanent residents.
- Naturalization applications.
- Renunciation of U.S. citizenship.
- Review and preparation of immigration policies, practices, processes and manuals.
- Training in immigration compliance geared towards human resources professionals, managers, executives and stakeholders.
- I-9 employment eligibility verification, including internal voluntary audits, employer sanctions, and investigations by the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.
- FDNS and U.S. Department of Labor audits.
- Panelist, NIV Options for Non-Degreed Professionals, 2016 AILA Annual Conference, Las Vegas, Nevada, June 22, 2016.
- Co-speaker, Skilled Temporary Foreign Worker Programs in Canada and the U.S., IMEDA Seminar, Vancouver, British Columbia, April 16, 2015.
- Panelist, AILA Law Student Panel, 2013 AILA Annual Conference, San Francisco, California, June 26, 2013.
- Co-speaker, Successful Hiring: Strategies to Avoid Immigration Pitfalls, 2012 IAPD/IPRA Soaring to New Heights State Conference, Chicago, Illinois, January 28, 2012.
- Author, F-1 Students and Expansion of the STEM OPT Program in the U.S., Guberman Garson Segal LLP Immigration Updates, July 2016.
- Co-author, Degree Equivalency and Nonimmigrant Visas, Immigration Practice Pointers, 2016-17 Edition.
- Author, H-2B or Not to Be?, Orange County Lawyer, July 2014, Volume 56, Number 7.
- Author, The 2013 Revised Form I-9: What is New?, Orange County Lawyer, December 2013, Volume 55, Number 12.
- Contributing author, AILA’s Guide to Immigration Law for Paralegals, November 2013 and August 2015.
- Co-author, What Does DACA Mean for Employers?, Today’s General Counsel, Volume 10, Number 1, February/March 2013.
- Author, How to Avoid Paperwork Violations for an I-9 Inspection, WHGC, PLC, October 2012.
- Co-author, The Balancing Act of Employment Eligibility Verification: Employer Obligations v. Anti-Discrimination, Tressler LLP California Business Law Confidential, March 2012.
- Co-author, The Present State of the I-9: Fundamental Components & Legal Considerations, Illinois Parks & Recreation Magazine, Volume 42, Number 4, July/August 2011.
Ms. Guzman is an active member of the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA). She is a contributing author to an AILA publication – AILA’s Guide to Immigration Law for Paralegals. Ms. Guzman has previously served as a Liaison to the U.S. Consulate in Vancouver on behalf of AILA’s Canada Chapter and as a Law Student Division Liaison with AILA’s Southern California Chapter. She is also an invited speaker at AILA’s annual conferences and volunteers at naturalization clinics offered to local immigrant communities throughout California.
Before joining Higgs Fletcher & Mack, Ms. Guzman worked in Canada specializing in U.S. immigration law for businesses and multi-national companies. In particular, she represented Deloitte and its global companies with the management and delivery of business immigration services for all aspects of nonimmigrant and immigrant cases within a high-volume environment.
During law school, Ms. Guzman served as a Judicial Extern to the U.S. Department of Justice, Executive Office of Immigration Review, Immigration Court in San Diego. She also completed a pro bono internship with the San Diego Volunteer Lawyer Program. Ms. Guzman received the American Jurisprudence Awards in Immigration Law, Legal Writing, European Union Law, and Women & International Human Rights. In addition, she was given the Outstanding Law Graduate Award by the National Association of Women Lawyers and the Wiley W. Manuel Certificate for Pro Bono Legal Services. Ms. Guzman participated in international moot court competitions and earned a Certificate in Global Legal Studies in conjunction with her Juris Doctor.
At Cornell University, Ms. Guzman was the recipient of an annual scholarship from Mobil Corporation in New York City where she interned with the Corporate Human Resources Department during her summer and winter sessions. After graduation, she worked in-house for Accenture in the New York Metro area and for SAP Labs U.S. in Silicon Valley as part of her dual role performing legal compliance in business immigration and in human resources. Ms. Guzman was also a Congress-Bundestag Scholar prior to commencing her undergraduate studies.