Ryan Swanson’s Seattle Immigration Group provides a wide array of U.S. immigration services. Our immigration group lawyers assist clients in obtaining temporary status in the United States for employment, training, or other business purposes. We also assist clients in becoming U.S. permanent residents and, ultimately, U.S. citizens through work, family, fiancé or marriage-based petitions.
Our lawyers assist clients in Seattle and across the United States. Please note, we do not handle cases involving deportation and removal, asylum, refugees, or immigration related criminal issues.
Much of our work on immigration involves representing companies who are sponsoring foreign nationals for temporary work visas and U.S. permanent residence status. In addition, our attorneys represent individuals who wish to sponsor family members for U.S. immigration purposes. We also file DACA cases ("DREAM"/Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program). We have extensive experience representing clients before all the government agencies involved in the immigration process, including U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), U.S. Customs and Border Protection, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL), the State Department, and consular posts throughout the world.
The Immigration Group’s services fall into three broad categories:
Because of our in-depth experience in immigration matters, our attorneys can identify the options available to a client under immigration laws, evaluate the merits of each option and then assist the client in selecting the best immigration option. In addition, we:
Based in Seattle, Ryan Swanson has a century-old history of representing business interests. Many of our immigration clients are Fortune 500 and foreign-based companies. In addition, we proudly offer our services to extended families, including individuals seeking to sponsor family members and spouses.
Janet H. Cheetham, Chair and Member
Janet H. Cheetham
Janet is one of the most experienced Seattle immigration attorneys and has practiced exclusively in the area of immigration and nationality law since 1981. She serves as Chair of the Immigration Group. She represents and advises businesses and individual clients on all aspects of immigration matters. Her work includes advising clients on nonimmigrant and immigrant visas. Janet has extensive experience in processing E-1 treaty trader, E-2 treaty investor, F-1, H-1B, H-2B, K-1 fiance, K-3 and L-1 nonimmigrant visas. She also processes immigrant visas involving spousal petitions, labor certifications under the PERM regulations and employment based petitions such as EB-1 outstanding researchers and professors, EB-2 and EB-3. Janet represents clients in a broad range of industries including fisheries, marine, freight forwarding, computer technology, banking, real estate, import-export, and forestry. She also advises corporate clients on employee sanctions and I-9 issues. Janet was selected to be Special Assistant for the State of Washington's immigration matters.
Joel H. Paget, Senior Immigration Attorney and Member
Joel H. Paget
Joel assists in obtaining business visas, classification, permanent residency and citizenship for immigrants in the United States. Joel also works with immigrants to obtain temporary and permanent positions as executives, managers or specialists and he also advises on treaty rights and obligations for payment or non-payment of taxes.
Marsha T. Mavunkel, Of Counsel
Marsha T. Mavunkel
Marsha focuses her practice exclusively in the area of U.S. Immigration and Naturalization law. She advises clients on family and employment based U.S. immigration law, and assists both corporate and individual clients with all aspects of the immigration process.
Elizabeth J. Emerson, Paralegal
Elizabeth J. Emerson
Most of Elizabeth's paralegal work involves business immigration. She works closely with employers, many of them high tech companies, that need government approval to bring people from other countries to the United States to work. She has extensive experience preparing the petitions that must be filed with the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services and other government agencies to obtain these approvals. In addition, Liz enjoys working on family-based cases for U.S. citizens who want to help their foreign-born fiancé(e), spouse, or children immigrate to the United States.
Brenda M. Ferderer, Paralegal
Brenda M. Ferderer
Brenda processes both family-based and employment-based immigration matters. She works closely with our clients to unite families and obtain employment visas and permanent residency status. She has extensive experience preparing petitions and/or applications for alien relatives, fiancée (K-1/K-3), immigrant and nonimmigrant visas, naturalization and derivative citizenship, specialized knowledge occupations (H-1), intra-company transferees (L-1), TN (NAFTA Professional), investors (E-1/E-2), business visitors (B-1), labor certification (PERM), and victims of domestic violence (VAWA). Brenda prepares these cases to be filed with the government agencies such as Department of Homeland Security, U.S. Department of Labor, U.S. Department of State, U.S. Embassies, etc.
Hiromi Peltonen, Paralegal
Hiromi's work involves preparing all types of employment-based and family-based immigration petitions such as temporary work visas, U.S. permanents resident status and citizenship. She has over 15 years experience preparing petitions and application filed with the U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Services, U.S. Department of Labor, U.S. Department of State, U.S. Embassies and other government agencies.
Allison Koh Wilder, Paralegal
Allison Koh Wilder
Allison enjoys working closely with clients, for employment purposes and to unite people from other countries with family members. She has extensive experience in both family and business immigration matters, including petitions and/or applications for alien relatives, fiance(e)(s), immigrant visas, naturalization, specialized knowledge occupations, intra-company transferees, TN (NAFTA Professional), investors, business visitors, labor certification and victims of domestic violence (VAWA). Allison prepares these cases to be filed with the Department of Homeland Security, U.S. Department of Labor, U.S. Department of State, U.S. Embassies and other government agencies. Allison joined the firm with more than eight years of experience as a legal assistant/paralegal, four of which were solely in immigration law.
Anca Badea, Department Assistant
Kathryn Heacock, Legal Assistant