Logo: Michelle Karshan and staff and participants of Alternative Chance/Chans Altenativ in Haiti

Attorneys & Clients

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Expert Witness Services

Michelle Karshan, Executive Director, Alternative Chance/Chans Altenativ
Criminal Deportee advocacy and self-help program in Haiti since 1996

Recognized Expert Witness on Criminal Deportation to Haiti providing affidavits and in-court or telephonic testimony since 2000, cited in numerous cases including many which granted withholding from removal and CAT. Contact: AlternativeChance@gmail.com or 845-879-2599

Alternative Chance on FACEBOOK

Alternative Chance on FACEBOOK. We post relevant cases on our FB page on a regular basis so please subscribe or check back frequently.

Some helpful links

Please look through Articles on Deportation, Alternative Chance, etc. as well for useful information

Rights Groups File Emergency Human Rights Petition To Stop Imminent Deportations To Haiti

Fla. groups fight effort to deport Haitians Palm Beach Post (Jan. 9, 2011 - NOTE: Cholera appeared in mid Oct 2010 in Haiti)

ACLU letter to President Obama and Secretary Napolitano to express opposition to administration’s plan to resume deportations of Haitian nationals with criminal records who have completed their sentences and have final removal orders (ACLU, Dec. 29, 2010)

ACLU and Congresswoman-Elect Frederica Wilson Call on Obama Administration to Avert “Human Rights Disaster,” Halt Deportation of Haitian Nationals (ACLU, Dec. 29, 2010)

Center for Constitutional Rights letter to President Obama Raising Concerns Over Immediate Plans to Resume Deportations to Haiti Amid Spiraling Cholera Outbreak (Dec. 16, 2010)

Being deported to Post-Earthquake Haiti? Life-Threatening, Illegal and Inhuman Detention Conditions will make Newly Deported the Latest Victims of Deadly Cholera Epidemic (Alternative Chance/Michelle Karshan statement on conditions for arriving criminal deportees , Dec. 15, 2010)

Center for Constitutional Rights, Institute for Justice & Democracy in Haiti and Alternative Chance Denounce U.S. Government’s Decision to Resume Some Deportations to Haiti Amid Spiraling Cholera Outbreak and Worsening Humanitarian Situation (Dec. 13, 2010)

Convention Against Torture (CAT)


Lavira v. Attorney General (3rd Cir. Feb. 2007; remanded for further proceedings) (Alternative Chance testimony within)

Padilla v. Kentucky

Padilla Resources (including brief)

PRACTICE ADVISORY:A Defending Immigrants Partnership Practice Advisory:Retroactive Applicability of Padilla v. Kentucky (National Immigration Project, June 24, 2010)

Padilla Central - clearing house for Padilla vs. Kentucky

ABA to Study Changing Role of Criminal Defense Lawyers Post-'Padilla' (New York Law Journal, Dec. 27, 2010)


Post-Deportation Project Legal Victory: Haitian Deportee Allowed to Return to the U.S. to Rejoin Wife and Children (Immigration Prof Blog, Dec. 29. 2010) I AM CHECKING WITH THE ATTORNEY ON WHETHER THIS IS A CRIMINAL DEPORTEE. I DON'T THINK HE IS.

MOTIONS TO REOPEN OR RECONSIDER on behalf of clients who have been ordered deported, excluded, or removed and who have already departed the United States (Boston College, Post-Deportation Human Rights Project, Dec 2010)

Family Impact

Dear ICE, at least play fair (the dangers of “voluntary return") (Montag Law Blog, Dec. 2010)

Immigration dispute erupts in Va. courts (WashPost, Dec. 30, 2010) Judges in Virginia opening cases to prevent deportation, article also discusses Padilla

Post Deportation Human Rights Project - Boston College

Fearing deportation, immigrants with criminal records rush court to have old convictions tossed (NY Daily News, Dec. 19, 2010)

Alternative Chance description of conditions for arriving criminal deportees to Haiti (April 2009)

U.S. must provide incapacitated immigrants with lawyers, judge rules (LA Times, Dec. 27, 2010)

Governor Pardons Six Immigrants Facing Deportation Over Old Crimes (New York Times, Dec. 6, 2010)

Judges on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown (Mother Jones, Nov/Dec 2010)

Bring back the wrongly deported (National Law Journal, Aug. 2, 2010)


The Continuing Struggle to Reform Our Deportation System and to Remember the Deported (Boston College, Post-Deportation Human Rights Project, 2009-2010) Read full Annual Report here

Practice Advisory, May 22, 2007, The Burden of Proof to Overcome the Aggravated Felony Bar to Cancellation of Removal by National Immigration Project

Alternatives to Deportation? How to Work with Immigrants in the Criminal Justice System, March 14, 2006

Representing Non-citizen Criminal Defendants in New York State by Manuel D. Vargas, New York State Defenders Association - Loose-leaf manual with a concise, readable analysis of various issues to be considered by the criminal practitioner representing a non-citizen defendant in New York State. Includes charts for quick reference to determine whether a given Penal Law is an aggravated felony or a crime or moral turpitude. $35 from the New York State Defenders Association

Florida Immigrant Advocacy Center

Criminal & Deportation Defense - National Immigration Project of the National Lawyers Guild

Deportation 101 - Detention, Deportation and the Criminal Justice System

Why Detention Is A Bad Idea And Why Detention Is Not Smart Enforcement

Supreme Court Limits Automatic Deportation For Legal Immigrants: Lopez v. Gonzales Practice Advisories and Media Materials, NYSDA

US: Mandatory Deportation Laws Harm American Families, Legal Residents Often Deported for Minor Crimes, Human Rights Watch

Briefing on Haiti: CRIMINAL DEPORTEES AND RETURNED TEENS by Privat Precil (Prepared by Alternative Chance for The Panos Institute)

Brief of Amicus Curiae, Familes for Freedom, before Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (Alternative Chance cited within)


Institute for Justice & Democracy in Haiti Special Section on Criminal Deportation

Various links to cases, reports, advisories, laws

Consular Recommendations (Families for Freedom)

Individual States Take Action to Stop Some Deportations

How to Get Your Immigration File

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