Farmworker & Immigration Rights Clinic (FIRC)

Directed by Professor Ashley Hamill


FIRC Law Students:

► Learn substantive immigration law.
► Build skills fundamental to the practice of law.
► Implement best practices in client-centered, trauma-informed lawyering. 
► Directly represent community members in immigration cases.
► Host community know-your-rights presentations, pro se workshops, and legal screenings.
► Submit comments on federal rulemaking.
► Meet with members of the Florida Legislature. 
► Testify at legislative committee hearings.
► Propose legislation.
► Litigate high impact cases.


Student Testimonials

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  • "The Immigration and Farmworker Clinic allowed me to work with real clients and build strong connections with them. I gained invaluable experience through interviewing clients, preparing motions, and conducting my first hearing in the Orlando Immigration Court." 

    - Anne Marie Macia, 3L

    about Lorem Ipsum

  • "While taking the Clinic, I learned invaluable skills and was able to form strong relationships with my clients and with other law students. I was able to engage in direct representation and also work on policy advocacy, which I found to be extremely gratifying. I strongly recommend that other law students take advantage of the opportunity to learn more about the U.S. immigration system while simultaneously giving back to our local immigrant and farmworker communities!" 

    - Nida Imtiaz, 3L

    about Lorem Ipsum

  • "Working with asylum seekers was an eye-opening experience! With the clinic, we worked with survivors of political persecution, and we helped them start their immigration proceedings so that they can successfully relocate in the U.S. This was a great opportunity to meet people coming from different parts of the world and learn from their experiences." 

    - Abril Smith, 2L

    about Lorem Ipsum

  • "The Immigration and Farmworker Project opened my eyes to the world of immigration law and all its complexities. I gained a vast amount of knowledge and client interviewing skills to prepare me for the future." 

    - Yardley Collett, 3L

    about Lorem Ipsum

  • “The Afghan Legal Screening at FSU Law was a great hands-on experience that allowed me to get a real sense of how screenings work. Connecting with someone who doesn’t speak the same language as you is hard, but this experience gave me the tools to learn how to better connect with and support a client throughout a screening.”

    - Alyssa Barberis, 2L (pictured on far right)

    about Lorem Ipsum


FIRC Advocates for North Florida Immigrant Communities

FIRC fills a substantial gap in services in our community as the only organization providing free, holistic deportation defense. FIRC’s work serves an essential role in a community where the odds of representation for those facing deportation ranges from 34.8 percent in Tallahassee, Florida’s capital, to as low as a mere 18.8 percent in North Florida’s rural counties. 

FIRC supports undocumented community members who strive to emerge from the shadow economy and seek economic prosperity for themselves and their families. Obtaining work authorization helps community members achieve job security, employment benefits, better wages, and protection from human trafficking and exploitation.

FIRC’s clients come from many different countries and walks of life. Some are farmworkers and other essential workers, who often sacrifice their health to improve the lives of their families and whose impossibly demanding jobs keep people fed and basic needs met across the United States. Some are political activists, opposition politicians, journalists, and students escaping governmental persecution in their home countries. Some are women and children fleeing endemic domestic and gang violence. All are individuals and families seeking safety, stability, and peace in the United States. 


Recent Highlights

18 clinical students, 44 student volunteers, and 17 pro bono attorneys worked to protect and advance the rights of FIRC’s clients.   

Students provided holistic representation to 72 community members from 9 countries in humanitarian-based immigration cases, including:

► Deportation Defense
 Asylum
► Protection under the U.N. Convention Against Torture (CAT)
► Special Immigrant Juvenile Status (SIJS)
► Temporary Protected Status (TPS)
► U Nonimmigrant Status (U Visas)
► T Nonimmigrant Status (T Visas)
► Family Petitions
► Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) Self-Petition
► Adjustment of Status 
► Cancellation of Removal
► Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA)
► Special Immigrant Visas (SIV)

Students completed legal screenings and intakes for 198 community members and provided limited legal services, including:

► Pro se assistance with applications for TPS and Asylum
► Pro se motions to change venue of deportation proceedings
 Advocacy with ICE to remove ankle monitors and change reporting locations
 Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests to obtain immigration files
► Applications for employment authorization
► Matching cases with pro bono counsel
► Connecting community members to community resources and service providers
Legal advice letters


 Students prevailed in state court proceedings and petitions for Special Immigrant Juvenile Status (SIJS) on behalf of children who fled domestic and gang violence to reunite with family in the United States.

 Students met with community members to conduct legal screening workshops and identified undocumented community members who may be eligible for a pathway to citizenship.

 Students continued to advocate for a more just and fair immigration system, submitting public comments to educate the federal government on the potential impact of proposed federal rules that would affect the rights of the asylum seekersDACA recipients, and families separated at the U.S.-Mexico border whom the students represent. 

 In the spring of 2022, students won an asylum case for a human rights defender from Nicaragua, filing her application, gathering hundreds of pages of evidence, drafting her legal brief, and representing her during her asylum interview.

 FIRC’s Afghan Legal Advocacy (ALA) Project impacts a large community of Afghan citizens who fled their homes and began resettling in North Florida last August. FIRC spearheads a community coalition that provides free legal representation and community resources to Afghan families. The ALA Project has provided free legal consultations and identified potential pathways to permanent residency for over 78 Afghan families. Temporary Protected Status (TPS) Pro Se Clinics are planned throughout 2022. Please contact Professor Hamill if you are interested in volunteering with the ALA Project. 

 Students continued to work on a high-impact litigation case on behalf of a farmworker family whom ICE is attempting to deport despite their long-term residence in the United States, U.S. citizen children, and roles as essential workers during the pandemic. The outcome of the case has the potential of benefitting thousands of immigrants who received deficient notices to appear in immigration court. 


Students – How to Apply for Enrollment

1. Register for the Farmworker & Immigration Rights Clinic course through your myFSU portal.
2. Fill out this simple form
3. There are no pre-requisites 
4. CLI status not required
5. Open to all students beginning the summer after 1L year

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Clients/Clientes – How to Apply for Legal Services/Para Solicitar Servicios Legales 

1. Call/Llamar al (850) 644-2722
2. Email/Correo electrónico Ashley Hamill, ahamill@law.fsu.edu


Community Member Materials/Materiales para miembros de la comunidad

► Información sencilla y gratuita para la comunidad inmigrante (Immi.org) 
► How to defend your own case/Como defender su propio caso (Florence Immigrant & Refugee Rights Project)
► Worker Protections/Protecciones para los trabajadores (U.S. Department of Labor) 
► Solicitud de Asilo (Formulario I-589) Instrucciones en Español (UNHCR)
► Tengo miedo de volver: Guía sobre el Asilo, la Suspensión de expulsión y la Convención contra la tortura (NIJC) 
 Instrucciones Para Declaraciones De Testigos Para Apoyar Su Aplicacion De Asilo (CLINIC)
► FAQ para la comunidad sobre el memorando de control de ICE del 30 de septiembre (NIPNLG)
► Power and Control Wheel/Rueda de Poder y Control (Futures Without Violence)
► Immigrant Rights (English)/Los Derechos de Inmigrantes (Español) (Immigrant Legal Resource Center)
► Plan de Preparación Familiar (Immigrant Legal Resource Center)
► Asylum Toolkit for Pro Se Afghan Applicants 


Pro Bono Attorney Materials

► Immigration Advocates Network (IAN)
► Immigration Relief for Immigrant Survivors of Abuse (Immigrant Legal Resource Center)
► Basic Procedural Manual for Asylum Representation and Sample Forms & Documents (National Immigrant Justice Center)
► Preparing an Applicant's Declaration in Support of Asylum and Related Relief (CLINIC)
► Pro Bono Attorney Manual on Immigration Relief for Crime Victims (National Immigrant Justice Center)
► Representing Clients in Bond Hearings (Immigrant Legal Resource Center)
► Preparing a Torture Survivor to Testify (HealTorture.org) 
► Trauma Informed Structured Interview Questionnaires for Immigration Cases (NIWAP)
► Power and Control Wheel/Rueda de Poder y Control (Futures Without Violence)
► Trainings for Representing Afghan Asylum and Special Immigrant Visa (SIV) Applicants and Asylum Seekers in Immigration Court