No green card = no summer internship?

Are there any prospects for a foreign law student getting summer job experience without a green card in hand? My girlfriend is an L1 trying to see what openings might be possible, and the initial impression is that even volunteering can be a challenge if organizations looking to the future screen for work status. Does anybody know of people without green cards getting summer work experience in law-related fields, or otherwise have a feel for what options might be open to a foreigner?

This is partially my fault because I wasn't spry enough to marry her before she started law school. (I'm prepared to marry her anyway, so it wouldn't be for the sake of a green card.) Now there's no bandwidth for a wedding and Vegas would be a sure way to piss the families off.

Any insights?

I have a lot of Canadian friends who were able to find volunteer work in the States.



Has she tried looking for firms that have partners in both her home country and the States?



Some DA and Public Defender offices will take pretty much anyone, from what I hear. 

KTW, thanks.



I don't think she's tried the firms with dual-country stakes yet, but that's a good idea. Her family at home does have some business connections.

Are you able to describe the volunteer work you Canuck friends took?

As a general rule, it is illegal to employ anybody in the US who does not have the requisite documents. A green card is just one of the available documents however.

pm1964 - As a general rule, it is illegal to employ anybody in the US who does not have the requisite documents. A green card is just one of the available documents however.


True. Is volunteering the same as employment? Would firms think twice before taking a volunteer who currently cannot be hired?

 L-1's are employer specific.  Meaning, your girl is eligible to work for the employer that did the L-1 for her.

If she is here as a law student, are you sure she's not F-1 or even J-1? F-1's can work part time off campus after the first year of school.  J-1s vary depending on type of J-1.  Different types of visas are available also depending on where she's from.  And, volunteering without pay is normally cool if the firm will allow it.  Maybe she could work in return for school credit so she's at least getting something out of it beyond the experience.

Hit me up if you have any other questions.

Richard