Over 25 years of experience in strategic U.S. Immigration counseling and representation in San Jose, San Francisco and the Monterey Bay area including advocacy for businesses, individuals and families worldwide.


Newly focused government efforts are underway to re-interpret immigration statutes, regulations and policies to be more favorable to start-ups and to encourage entrepreneurs in both non-immigrant visa categories and for green card national interest waiver options.


NIW and EB1

Extraordinary Ability individuals, internationally acclaimed professors or researchers, and researchers working in the U.S. national interest can apply for the green card without first having to compete against U.S. workers. National Interest Waiver (NIW) and Extraordinary Ability individuals can self-petition.

NIW and EB1

US to UK

U.K. settlement may be prompted by work or a close family relationship. Because the legal requirements for visas based on a qualifying relationship were recently overhauled, it is important to seek legal counsel especially regarding the new financial requirements.

US to UK


Green card holders are eligible to apply for citizenship 5 years (3 if marriage-based green card) after achieving green card status, if otherwise eligible. New rules allow certain children to achieve automatic citizenship once they achieve permanent resident status.


J-1 Waivers

Many J-1 scholars find themselves with a two-year home residence requirement which they must satisfy before switching to certain working visas or permanent residence. There is however, the possibility to waive this requirement by applying to the Department of State for a J-1 waiver based on one of the approved grounds.

Family-based Immigration

Close U.S. citizen and permanent resident family relatives in the U.S. can sponsor foreign nationals for the green card. Close relationships include spouse, mother, father and siblings. A U.S. citizen can sponsor a fiancé from overseas to enter the U.S. so that the couple can marry in the U.S. and subsequently file for a green card.


A timely distillation of immigration case strategies

Announcing Lipson & Pretorius LLP

Black and White photograph of Hendrik Pretorius new partner at Lipson & Pretorius LLC

We are pleased to announce that Immigration Attorney Hendrik Pretorius has joined Ann Lipson to form a new partnership as of January 1, 2014 – Lipson & Pretorius LLP – with offices in San Francisco, San Jose and the Monterey Bay. We will continue to focus our practice exclusively on immigration law. 

Hendrik Pretorius, a member of the American Immigration Lawyers Association, who has delivered various immigration seminars at leading organizations throughout California, is a dedicated immigration practitioner focusing on employment based non-immigrant and immigrant visa matters. Hendrik, an immigrant himself from South Africa, has also been recognized as a’ Rising Star’ by, a distinction provided to only the top 2.5% of immigration lawyers in California. Along with Hendrik Pretorius we have also added attorney Ramona Atanacio to our existing staff.  You can learn more about Hendrik at About Us.

These exciting changes to…

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November 11, 2013J-1 Waiver Based on Support From an IGA: Guidelines from USDA

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September 16, 2013L-1B Specialized Knowledge Definition Getting Clearer

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