Skip to content

Clinics & SPOs

Harvard Immigration and Refugee Clinical Program

  • HIRC plays key role in landmark decision recognizing domestic violence as grounds for asylum

    August 27, 2014

    The Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA) issued a ground-breaking decision yesterday that recognized domestic violence as a basis for asylum. The court’s decision

  • Harvard Immigration and Refugee Clinical Program attains major First Circuit victory involving persecution in Guatemala

    July 30, 2014

    In a landmark immigration decision involving a claim of eligibility for asylum, the First Circuit Court of Appeals has issued an opinion finding past persecution in the case of a Mayan man, based on the long history of genocide in Guatemala and related racist mistreatment. The client in the case, Manuel Ordonez-Quino, was represented by Harvard Law School Senior Clinical Instructors John Willshire Carrera and Nancy Kelly, co-managing directors of the Harvard Immigration and Refugee Clinic at Greater Boston Legal Services.

  • David Thronson, Margaret Stock '92, Ira Kurzban, and Pratt speaking at a table in front of the room

    Ninth Circuit judge recounts landmark case at HIRC 30th anniversary

    July 22, 2014

    On June 17, about 200 Harvard Law School alumni and students gathered to mark the 30th anniversary of the Harvard Immigration & Refugee Clinical Program (HIRC). It was a celebration of "30 Years of Social Change Lawyering," and it brought together advocates from around the country and the world.

  • On the Border

    May 13, 2014

    Students witness the journey of the undocumented

  • Deborah Anker

    Anker on Immigration Rights: ‘We need civil Gideon’

    May 9, 2014

    For three decades, Deborah Anker has encouraged students to pursue a more generous immigration policy.

  • Broken Heart illustration Harvard Immigration Project

    HLS students draft memorandum accompanying bill to restore immigrant trust in local law enforcement

    February 13, 2014

    Thirty-three professors from Massachusetts law schools have signed on to an important legal opinion drafted by Harvard Law students in support of the Massachusetts Trust Act. The bill seeks to restore the immigrant community’s trust in local law enforcement by limiting the role of local police authorities in the deportation process.

  • Harvard report finds Canada, U.S. failing in refugee protection

    November 26, 2013

    On November 26, 2013, the Harvard Immigration and Refugee Clinic (HIRC) released a comprehensive report titled "Bordering on Failure: Canada-U.S. Border Policy and the Politics of Refugee Exclusion." The report examines Canadian border measures designed to intercept and deflect "undesirable travelers", including asylum seekers, before they set foot on Canadian soil and make a claim for refugee protection.

  • Margaret Stock '92

    Immigration Specialist Margaret Stock ’92 receives MacArthur Genius Award

    September 30, 2013

    Harvard Law School alum Margaret Stock '92 is one of 24 recipients of the 2013 MacArthur Fellowship, more commonly known as the MacArthur "Genius Award". Stock is an immigration attorney with a focus on improving the immigration system through direct representation, policy-based advocacy and an emphasis on the idea that immigration does not threaten national security.

  • HLS Lecturer on Law Phil Torrey

    Clinical opportunities and a new class at the intersection of immigration and criminal law

    August 12, 2013

    Crimmigration—the intersection of criminal law and immigration—is a burgeoning legal area, and one that is of great interest to students, according to Harvard Law School Lecturer on Law and Clinical Instructor Phil Torrey. This fall, Torrey, who supervises the Harvard Immigration Project's Bond Hearing Representation project, will be offering a new clinical course on the topic.

  • Clinic students secure asylum for indigenous survivors of persecution in Guatemala

    May 1, 2013

    Last month, as an historic trial continued in Guatemala against a former dictator charged with the genocide of indigenous Mayans, Lauren Herman ’13—a student in the Harvard Immigration and Refugee Clinic (HIRC) —stood in court in Boston as a judge announced he was granting asylum to her Mayan client, who, with his family, had suffered persecution for decades before he came to the U.S. in 2009.

  • Prison cell

    The Harvard Immigration Project: Fighting for the rights of immigrant detainees

    April 9, 2013

    Following its second victory, the Harvard Immigration Project’s (HIP) Bond Hearing Project continues its new campaign to provide free legal representation to detained immigrants seeking release from immigration custody.

  • Six from Harvard Law School awarded Skadden Fellowships

    January 9, 2013

    Six from Harvard Law School recently were chosen by the Skadden Foundation to receive two-year fellowships to support their work in public service. This year’s recipients include current students Haben Girma ’13, Hunter Landerholm ’13, Adam Meyers ’13 and Mara Sacks ’13, and recent graduates Robert Hodgson ’12 and Daniel Saver ’12.

  • Jean-Paul anonymous profile

    Harvard law clinic defends rights of those who might have none in homelands

    August 7, 2012

    One afternoon in late July, a 39-year-old African man we will call Jean-Paul took the elevator to the third floor of Harvard Law School’s (HLS) Wasserstein Hall. He walked into the Harvard Immigration and Refugee Clinic and was greeted like a hero.

  • Bill Frelick

    Immigration and Refugee Clinical Program sponsors talk on EU migration controls

    December 12, 2011

    Bill Frelick, director of the refugee program at Human Rights Watch, spoke at Harvard Law School at the end of October on European Union migration controls and access to asylum, at an event sponsored by the Harvard Immigration and Refugee Clinical Program.

  • Lucas Guttentag

    National implications of state-led immigration reform

    November 15, 2011

    At an event about the national implications of state-led immigration reform, sponsored by Harvard Immigration Project, Advocates for Human Rights, and ACLU-HLS, Lucas Guttentag, senior counsel and former founding national director of the ACLU's Immigrants’ Rights Project, discussed Alabama's new immigration law, its significance for state efforts to regulate immigration, and where immigration advocates go from here.

  • Anker elected to the Fellows of the American Bar Foundation

    September 19, 2011

    For upholding the highest principles of the legal profession and for outstanding dedication to the welfare of others, HLS Clinical Professor Deborah Anker LL.M. ’84 was recently elected to the Fellows of the American Bar Foundation. Anker, one of the nation’s top scholars in immigration law, is director of the Harvard Immigration and Refugee Clinic and has taught immigration law and supervised clinical students for over 20 years.

  • Rebecca Sharpless '94

    Rebecca Sharpless ’94 leads effort to suspend U.S. deportations to Haiti

    February 28, 2011

    An emergency petition campaign spearheaded by Harvard Law School graduate Rebecca Sharpless ’94 and five human rights organizations has prompted the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights to urge the U.S. government to halt deportations to Haiti of Haitian citizens who are seriously ill or who have family ties in the U.S.

  • Student's in Harvard's Immigration and Refugee Clinic

    Safe harbor: Winning asylum for refugees from persecution

    February 23, 2011

    After countless hours of interviewing their client, digging through documents and working with experts to prepare for two court hearings, students in the Harvard Immigration and Refugee Clinic got what they were after: a grant of asylum.

  • Harvard Immigration and Refugee Clinic wins rehearing of child asylum case in First Circuit

    September 13, 2010

    The U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit has granted a rehearing in Mejilla-Romero v. Holder, vacating its original published decision denying a child asylum applicant’s petition for review. The order granting rehearing now directs the Board of Immigration Appeals to address the special treatment of child asylum applicants as set forth in guidelines issued by the Department of Homeland Security, the Department of Justice, and the United Nation High Commission for Refugees.

  • Clinical Professor Deborah Anker

    Anker named 2009 Woman of Justice

    November 18, 2009

    Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly, the Massachusetts Association of Women Lawyers and the Women’s Bar Association have recognized Professor Deborah Anker, LL.M. ’84, one of the world’s leading scholars and practitioners of immigration law, as a 2009 Woman of Justice.

  • Facing huge odds, asylum-seekers find help at HLS

    October 1, 2009

    Diego, Anastasia and Juan (not their real names) are undocumented immigrants. They are seeking asylum in the United States because if they return to El Salvador, they say they will almost certainly be killed.