Citizenship & Naturalization
Citizenship & Naturalization

Read More
Family Based Immigration
Family Based Immigration

Read More

Read More

San Diego Immigration Lawyer

Profile Picture of Abeba Habtemariam

As a seasoned immigration attorney with more than 15 years of experience, Attorney Abeba Habtemariam has worked within the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), the nonprofit sector, and as a private attorney. Working across these sectors provides her an understanding of the complex network of stakeholders, issues, and perspectives pertaining to immigration law and its enforcement making her an extremely well informed advocate for her clients.

Across her roles as an immigration attorney, she has exercised strategic thinking and proactively monitored changes in immigration laws. As an Asylum Officer, she demonstrated these skills throughout the case adjudication process, from research and preparatory work to developing lines of questioning, conducting interviews, and following up on threads of inconsistencies and fraud. As an Asylum Officer, she completed assessments outlining her rationale for approvals and referrals to Immigration Court. She brings this knowledge of the process for Asylum case adjudication, the criteria used to evaluate cases, and her sound judgment and full understanding of the applicable laws to serve her clients.

Abeba has a demonstrated ability to work within a network of governmental entities in my roles with USCIS. As an Asylum Officer, my role required me to coordinate and collaborate with other Department of Homeland Security components and Department of State. This provided her deeper insight into the relevant issues from the perspective of immigration enforcement. Through coordination with Fraud Detection and National Security (FDNS), Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Customs and Border Protection or Homeland Security Investigations, she successfully prepared and pushed forward cases. Through these experiences she has gained a deep understanding of the complex network of stakeholders in immigration law and how to apply the law to serve and advocate for her clients.

Through her work as a head counsel for a immigration non profit organization, dedicated to serving San Diego’s undocumented population, as well as her work in private practice, Attorney Habtemariam has successfully represented clients with even the most complex of cases. She has represented clients in court proceedings for asylum, naturalization, and family-based petitions and can help you file family based and employment based adjustment of status applications, visas, family petitions, asylum, removal of conditions, and naturalizations. She can also help you respond to Request for Evidence(RFE) and NOID(Notice of Intent to Deny) letters. In her practice, Abeba researches, interprets, and analyzes information from sources, such as pertinent sections of law and regulations, operating instructions, reference and guidance contained in legislative history, precedent decisions and other information to advise the best course of action. Throughout the case management process, she educates her clients on the current state of the immigration policies that impact them. Abeba monitors constantly changing immigration law, so you don’t have to.

At AH Law, we understand that each individual case is unique and there generally is no “one size fits all” solution when it comes to resolving immigration issues. For our clients, we take the time to understand your goals, evaluate your case, conduct research, and craft a strategy to maximize your chances of success. Our goal is to get it right - the first time.

See below for more information on the different types of immigration filings and their requirements.


If you are a US citizen and want to bring your foreign born Fiance to the United States to get married, you must file Form I-129F-Petition for Alien Fiance. Additional requirements include:

  • You must get married within 90 days of entry as a K-1 nonimmigrant to the United States
  • You must have met face to face in person within 2 years prior to you filing Form I-129F

You may file for asylum if you are in the United States and have suffered past persecution or have a well founded fear of future persecution in your county of nationality because of race, religion, membership in a particular social group or political opinion.

You must apply for asylum within one year after your last arrival to the United States, unless you qualify for an exception.

In your asylum application, you may include your spouse and children under 21 years of age.

The asylum process:

To apply for affirmative asylum in the United States:

  • You must file Form I-589 with USCIS.
  • Be physically present in the United States
  • You must meet the definition of a Refugee*
  • You must file your asylum application within one year of your last arrival to the United States
  • If you filed your asylum application after one year, you must show:
    • Changed circumstances that materially affect your eligibility for asylum
    • Extraordinary circumstances explaining the delay in filing

*A Refugee is any person who is outside any country of such person’s nationality or, in the case of a person having no nationality, is outside any country in which such person last habitually resided, and who is unable or unwilling to return to, and is unable or unwilling to avail himself or herself of the protection of, that country because of persecution or a well-founded fear of persecution on account of race, religion, nationality, membership in a particular social group, or political opinion.

Adjustment of Status

Adjustment of status refers to the process by which one obtains a green card. There are various ways of obtaining a green card- for example- family based, employment based.

The adjustment of status process:

  • File Form I-485 with the correct fees at the proper location
  • Birth Certificate of the applicant, with a translated copy attached if needed
  • Evidence of admission or parole to the United States
  • Submit affidavit of support and all related forms
  • Report of Medical Examination and Vaccination Record (Form I-693)

Depending on the basis of filing for adjustment of status, certain applicants must attach evidence of the underlying petition with their application Certified copies of arrest records and court dispositions for all arrests. Applicants are not required to submit records for minor traffic violations, records that don’t involve drugs or alcohol, citations that did not result in an arrest or where the penalty was a fine for less than $500 or points on a driver’s license

For more information about the process for applying for asylum, adjustment of status, visa or to learn how we can help address your immigration needs, call us today to talk to an experienced immigration lawyer. Our office will conduct the necessary investigation, case preparation, and present the evidence needed to help you maximize the chances of success for your case.

Contact Us
Attorney photo
  1. 1Former US Immigration Officer
  2. 2Over 15 years experience
  3. 3Schedule Consultation Today!