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About me

The State Bar of California designated me a certified specialist in immigration and nationality law.  As of September 2015 there are only 194 California State Bar-certified specialists in immigration and nationality law.  California attorneys who are certified as specialists have taken and passed a written examination in their specialty field, demonstrated a high level of experience in the specialty field, fulfilled ongoing education requirements and have been favorably evaluated by other attorneys and judges familiar with their work.  The one day examination includes four hours to complete eight essays and 2.5 hours to complete 75 multiple choice questions.  The examination is difficult because it may test on any immigration law question from labor certification and EB-5 investor visas to deportation defense, the immigration consequences of criminal convictions... anything.

I have served as an adjunct professor of law at the University of San Diego School of law from 2012 to 2015 where I taught a three unit upper division law school class on immigration law.

I have practiced immigration law for more than 17 years and I have experience in all areas of immigration law from business immigration, H-1Bs, EB-5, PERM labor certification to J-1 waivers, unlawful presence waivers, cancellation of removal, family immigration, asylum, withholding of removal, circuit court appeals, mandamus, parole-in-place, humanitarian parole, DACA, and many other areas.

We have a paperless office with superb systems to streamline case processing and reduce data processing errors.

I also practice employment law, an area that complements immigration law because many immigration law issues relate to employment.  Often individual and corporate customers have questions or problems that involve both immigration and employment law issues.


Languages spoken: Spanish, English

Practice areas


  1. Immigration: 40%
    18 years
  2. Employment: 33%
  3. Litigation: 27%



Hourly ($300-375/hour), contingent (33-40%), Fixed (sometimes)

Payment types:

Cash, Check, Credit card

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Contact info

Olender - immigration + employment

4030 Moorpark Avenue.
Suite 234
San Jose, CA, 95117


We have not found any instances of professional misconduct for this lawyer.
Avvo contributions
Legal answers
Award nameGrantorDate granted
Certified Specialist - Immigration & Nationality LawState Bar of California2015
Volunteer Appreciation - Accepting Over 10 Referrals in 2012AIDS Legal Referral Panel2013
Client Choice AwardAVVO2013
Certificate of AppreciationCoalition of Concerned Legal Professionals2009
Benito Juarez Human Rights AwardAIDS Legal Referral Panel2008
Outstanding Volunteer in Public Service AwardBar Association of San Francisco, Volunteer Legal Services Program2002
Certificate of Appreciation for Significant ContributionsAmerican Immigration Lawyers Association2000
Work experience
TitleCompany nameDuration
Principal AttorneyOlender2014 - Present
Adjunct ProfessorUniversity Of San Diego School Of Law2012 - 2015
PartnerOlender Pham2009 - 2013
PrincipalOlender Law Office1998 - 2009
Association namePosition nameDuration
Coalition of Concerned Legal ProfessionalsMember of the Board2011 - Present
American Immigration Lawyers AssociationMember1998 - Present
San Francisco Attorney MagazineMember of the Editorial Board2002 - 2003
Bar Association of San Francisco, Immigration SectionChair2001 - 2002
Bar Association of San Francisco, Barristers Club ImmigrationChair2001 - 2002
Legal cases
Case nameOutcome
Shah v. Ashcroft, SACV 01-592Successfully sued USCIS and State Department for immigrant visa.
Represented Client in Attorney Malpractice SuitSettled for $70,000.
Workplace Safety RetaliationSettled for a confidential sum.
See all legal cases 
Publication nameTitleDate
The VerdictThe Criminal Character of the Civil Immigration Law System2009
Verdict MagazineThe Trickle Down Bailout Bottoms Out2008
San Francisco Attorney MagazineThe Mess at INS2002
NCHRA Legal and Legislative Affairs CouncilImmigration Issues in a New World: The End of INS2002
San Francisco Attorney MagazineA Footnote to the Linda Chavez Scandal2001
Bar Association of San Franciso - Barrister's Club JournalIn and Out of Cuba: Two Sides of an Unusual Immigration Process2001
San Francisco Attorney MagazineOpening a US Office: Immigration Aspects of Offshore Software2001
NCHRA HR BulletinOh Those H-1Bs: The Silicon Valley's Skilled Worker Shortage2000
NCHRA HR Continuing EducationThe H-1B Skilled Worker Handbook: Tips and Secrets for Quickly Hiring the Best Candidates2000
School nameMajorDegreeGraduated
University of San Diego School of LawLawJD - Juris Doctor1997
University of California - Santa BarbaraPolitical ScienceBA1994
Speaking engagements
Conference nameTitleDate
HR WestBusiness Immigration2015
San Diego International Law Journal SymposiumChaidez v. United States - Padilla Retroactivity2013
PERM Labor Certification and Pathways to Permanent ResidencePERM Labor Certification2013
NCHRA Global eSummitH-1B File Maintenance and Compliance2013
UCSF Incarcerated Populations ConferenceAn Overview of Immigration Remedies Available to Detained HIV+ Patients2012
The Mortgage Crisis and Government InterventionThe Financial Crisis2008
Employment Authorization Documents, Using the Law to Its FullestEmployment Authorization Documents2008
Causes of the Crisis and What We Can Expect from the New AdministrationFinancial Crisis2008
Panel Asylum Attorney TrainingRepresenting Applicants with HIV and AIDS in Asylum Proceedings2007
Legal and Legislative UpdateSocial Security No Match Letters2007
New PERM Rules: The Biggest Change to the Green Card Process in Ten YearsPERM Labor Certification - Employment Based Immigration2005
Managing HR in the Healthcare SectorImmigration Issues in the Health Care Sector2005
Managing HR in the Healthcare SectorImmigration Issues in the Health Care Sector2004
Immigration Update: New Rules for Work-Based Visas & GreencardsWork Visas and Green Cards2003
Big Changes for Immigration Law: The End of INS and New Rules for Green CardsReorganization of INS into Department of Homeland Security2003
2003 Human Resources Legislative UpdateLegislative Update2003
2002 Human Resources Legislative UpdateLegislative Update2002
Hiring Foreign Workers in a New WorldHiring Foreign Workers2001
Hiring Foreign ProfessionalsHiring Foreign Workers2000
Getting the Most from the New H-1B LawH-1B Laws and Regulations2000
21st Century Work Issues: 2000 Legislative UpdateBusiness Immigration and Legislative Update2000
Business Immigration and Compensation IssuesBusiness Immigration and Compensation1999