The Bishop Francis Center for Legal Immigration Services

Immigration Assistance Program

The Immigration Assistance program provides assistance to clients with immigration needs by providing low-cost, fee-for-service legal assistance in all phases of immigration and naturalization proceedings, representation in deportation or exclusion proceedings before the Immigration Court, and assistance in any matter involving immigration and citizenship.

We have experience with a wide range of cases, including family petitions, consular processing, Special Immigrant Juvenile Status (including family court representation), religious worker visas, work permit requests, asylum, withholding of removal, the Convention Against Torture, Temporary Protected Status, LPR cancellation of removal, fraud waivers, non-LPR cancellation of removal, VAWA for domestic violence victims, U visas for crime victims, bond hearings, requesting prosecutorial discretion, requesting deferred action (DREAMERS), requesting removal of electronic monitoring equipment, stays of removal, and motions to reopen. We have experience in Newark Immigration Court, Elizabeth Immigration Court, and the Board of Immigration Appeals.

Program staff is available to provide educational workshops to groups on immigration law and current immigration issues.

Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Newark
Bishop Francis Center for Legal Immigration Services
976 Broad Street
Newark, NJ 07102

Phone: (973) 733-3516; Fax: (973) 733-9631

Hours of Operation
Monday - Friday; 9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. - by appointment only

Walk-in days for initial consultations only (no appointment required):
Tuesday mornings, 9-11 a.m.
Thursday afternoons, 3-5 p.m.

There is a consultation fee of $50 for general immigration cases. However, if your case is in immigration court or deportation, the consultation fee is $60. All fees are payable by a money order only. Additional fees apply depending upon the work being performed.

Immigration Detainees

Catholic Charities also provides crucial services to a vulnerable and often voiceless population. In coordination with several other local non-profit agencies, we provide "Know Your Rights" presentations at Delaney Hall in Newark, New Jersey. At Delaney Hall and in the Elizabeth Detention Center we conduct in-depth interviews with identified torture survivors and prepare case summaries for distribution to legal service providers participating in the program, and other local agencies and attorneys that provide pro bono representation. We facilitate and promote the referral of cases for representation by legal service providers. To efficiently and effectively carry out these duties we also recruit, supervise, train and work with volunteer lawyers and law students.

If you know someone in Delaney Hall or the Elizabeth Detention Center seeking representation, please call Catholic Charities at 973-733-3516 to be directed to an appropriate attorney.

SPECIAL PROGRAMS FOR MIGRANT CHILDREN (contact Catholic Charities at 973-733-3516 to be directed to these programs).

Safe Release Support Program

The Safe Release Program helps to reunite migrant children with their families in the United States. These children often face violence and trauma in their home country or on their journey to the U.S. The Safe Release Program ensures that they are protected, cared for, and given access to the services they need.

We are a Safe Release Program site, and we assist families when they are at their most vulnerable - when they need guidance through the complex process to reunite with their children.

Legal Orientation Program for Custodians

To the sponsor(s) who will take care of a released immigrant child, our program provides information relating to:

  • The Immigration court proceedings,
  • Benefits that the children are eligible for,
  • Free or Low cost services, and
  • How to locate an immigration attorney.

For support services to refugees, asylees, Cuban-Haitian entrants, and victims of human trafficking, please call 201-325-4800.

John Westervelt
Chief Executive Officer

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Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Newark


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