State Bar Deactivates Immigration Legal Assistance Operation In Fontana

The business formerly known as Immigrants Legal Options in Fontana has been shuttered through action by the State Bar of California. On Monday, October 28, the State Bar’s petition to the Superior Court of San Bernardino County for a permanent court order was granted, upon which the State Bar was given full access to the premises of Immigrants Legal Options, operated by Samaris Estrada.
The California Bar’s effort against Estrada and her business was led by State Bar of California Deputy Trial Counsel Veronica Trejo, acting on behalf of Melanie Lawrence, the bar’s interim chief trial counsel, based on evidence accumulated by California State Bar Investigator Michael Chavez.
According to Trejo, “Samaris Estrada is doing business as Immigrants Legal Options, Immigration Legal Options, and Imigration Legal Option, Inc. and maintains her principal office at 8456 Sierra Ave., Fontana, CA 92335. Estrada is not and never has been an active member of the California State Bar, and she has never been otherwise authorized pursuant to statute or court rule to practice law in California. Estrada has a history of engaging in the unauthorized practice of law and has been subject to several investigations by the State Bar. In 2013 the State Bar found that Estrada had engaged in the unauthorized practice of law by performing legal work and calling herself an ‘immigration specialist.’”
Under an interim order granted in early October, the State Bar seized more than 100 boxes of client files from Estrada, of which some 80 boxes were active files.
Estrada denied engaging in the unauthorized practice of law. The California State Bar presented evidence showing she had received from her clients several thousand dollars per immigration case in return for her assurance that she could assist them in obtaining legal residency, often without salutary results.
The State Bar has established a bilingual dedicated phone number for clients of Estrada who wish to reclaim their files or documents: 213-765-1673.

Leave a Reply