Denyse Sabagh: Lawyer with Duane Morris LLP

Denyse Sabagh

Washington,  DC  U.S.A.
Phone202 776 7817

Peer Rating
AV® Preeminent

Client Rating

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Experience & Credentials Ratings & Reviews

Practice Areas

  • Immigration and Nationality Law and Litigation
    Contact InfoTelephone: 202 776 7817
    Fax: 202 379 9867
    Law SchoolGeorge Mason University Law School, J.D., 1977
    Admitted1977, Virginia; 1982, District of Columbia; U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia; U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia; U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit; U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland; Supreme Court of Virginia; Supreme Court of Maryland

    Professional Activities

    •American Bar Association
    - Coordinating Committee on Immigration Law, 1997-2001
    •The District of Columbia Bar
    •The Virginia State Bar
    •Arlington County Bar Association
    •Fairfax County Bar Association
    -Chair, Continuing Legal Education Committee, 1982-1984
    •American Immigration Lawyers Association
    - Member, Board of Governors, 1988-present
    - Chair, Legislative Advocacy Committee, 2001-present
    - General Counsel, 2003-2005
    - Former Chair, EB-5 Liaison Committee
    •Chair, Enforcement Liaison Committee with the Immigration and Naturalization Service, 1999
    - Member, Board of Governors, 1988-present
    - President, 1996-1997
    - President Elect, 1995-1996
    - First Vice President, 1994-1995
    - Second Vice President, 1993-1994
    - National Secretary, 1991-1992
    - Chair, 1990 Annual Conference
    - Co-Chair, Business Immigration Conference, 1998
    - Chair, Second Annual Capital Conference, 1987
    - Chair, First Annual Capital Conference, 1986
    - Co-Chair, National Committee on Legislation, 1985-1986
    President and Secretary, Washington, D.C. Chapter, 1983-1985
    •FBI Arab American Advisory Committee
    •American Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee
    -Recipient of First Legal Award, 1994
    •American Civil Liberties Committee
    - Chair, National Capital Chapter, Civil Liberties Summit Committee, 1999
    •Middle East Asylum Project, 1994-present
    •Human Rights Delegations, 1993, 1987
    •Adviser to Presidential Transition Team Immigration Group, 1992
    •Expert Witness, Commonwealth of Virginia vs. Regina Magalena Buzan, Case No. CR 54205, Circuit Court for Prince William County, Virginia, 2004

    Board Memberships

    •National Immigration Forum - Board of Directors - 2011 to present; Vice Chair - 2013 to present
    •Arab American Institute - Board of Directors - 2011 to present
    •Immigrants List - Board of Directors 2008- present
    •Board of Directors, Association to Invest in USA, The EB-5 Regional Center Investment Program
    •American Civil Liberties Union, Board of Directors, National Capital Area Chapter, 2000
    •National Multicultural Institute, 1990-present
    - President, 2004-present
    •Potomac Massage Training Institute, 1990-2001
    - President, 1991-1994

    BornWashington, D.C., September 27, 1948

    Denyse Sabagh is the head of the firm's Immigration Practice Group. She practices in the areas of immigration and nationality law and litigation.

    Ms. Sabagh has more than 30 years of experience in representing diverse clients. She helps corporate clients manage both inbound and outbound employment immigration. She is a recognized leader in all aspects of immigration law. She has in depth experience representing individual and corporate clients for all of their immigration needs including E, H, J, L, O, P, and TN non-immigrant and EB-1, PERMs, immigrant visas, EB 5 Immigrant Investor Visa, J-1 waivers and Outbound issues. She also represents clients in I-9 audits, complex immigration cases, consular processing and immigration ramifications of criminal charges. In addition, she represents family based clients. She is a frequently featured speaker at national, state, and local conferences and in national and international media.

    She is a recognized leader in developing strategic business immigration programs and policies.

    Ms. Sabagh is a former national president and general counsel of the American Immigration Lawyers Association and serves on its Board of Governors. She is the Vice Chair of the National Immigration Forum, the umbrella organization for organizations concerned about immigration. She is also on the Board of the Arab American Institute and Immigrants' List, the only pro-immigration PAC. Ms. Sabagh is also a former member of the Coordinating Committee on Immigration Law of the American Bar Association, former chair of the Continuing Legal Education Committee of the Fairfax County Bar Association and former member of board of directors of the American Civil Liberties Union National Capital Area Chapter. In 2010, Human Resource Executive magazine named her one of their Top 15 for Immigration Law. She has been listed in Washingtonian magazine consistently as best lawyer and in 2009, Washingtonian magazine listed Ms. Sabagh as one of 30 Stars of the Bar in Washington, D.C and in 2012 she featured in the Washingtonian. She is listed in Chambers Global and Chambers USA: America's Leading Business Lawyers for 2006 through 2014, and was awarded the first Rose Bouziane Nader Award by the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee in June 2006. This Award is given to an Arab American who exemplifies civic courage, organizing skills and significant achievement in advancing the just society with its pursuit of happiness, creativity and foresight. She also received the Hala Maksoud Award for Leadership in 2012.

    Admitted to practice in the District of Columbia and Virginia, Ms. Sabagh is a member of the District of Columbia, Virginia State, Arlington County and Fairfax County bar associations, the 4th Circuit, the D.C. Circuit and the Maryland District Court. She is a 1977 magna cum laude graduate of George Mason University Law School and a graduate of the University of Maryland.


    •Duane Morris LLP
    - Partner, 1997-present
    •Metzger, Hollis, Gordon & Alprin, Washington, D.C.
    - Partner, 1977-1997

    Honors & Awards

    •Recognized as one of the world's leading Corporate Immigration lawyers, Who's Who of Corporate Immigration Lawyers 2014
    • Eb5 verified by
    •Listed in Washington, D.C. Super Lawyers for Immigration, 2007-2014
    •Listed in The Best Lawyers in America, 1995-2015
    •Listed in Chambers USA: America's Leading Business Lawyers, 2006-2014 editions
    •Listed in Human Resource Executive's Most Powerful Employment Attorneys - Immigration, 2010, 2012 and 2013
    •Listed as one of 30 Stars of the Bar in Washington, D.C. by Washingtonian magazine, December 2009
    •Listed in Chambers Global: Global Leading Lawyers for Business, 2006-2013 editions
    •Recipient of first Hala Maksoud Award by the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee for Leadership in the community - 2012
    •Recipient, first Rose Bouziane Nader Award by the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee for exemplifying civic courage,organizing skills and significant achievement in advancing a justsociety, 2006
    •Listed in The International Who's Who of Corporate Immigration Lawyers, 2000-present
    - Included on list of Most Highly Regarded Individuals for Washington, D.C., 2005
    •Listed in The Washingtonian as one of the top immigration lawyers in Washington, D.C., 2004 and 2009
    •Recipient, Edith Lowenstein Memorial Award for Excellence in Advancing The Practice of Immigration Law at the American Immigration Lawyers Association Annual Conference, 2003
    Lawyers World Global Award, 2011
    • AV Preeminent Peer Review Rated by Martindale-Hubbell

    Civic and Charitable Activities

    •D.C. Rape Crisis Center
    - President, 1979-1981
    - Board Member, 1978-1981
    •Washington Peace Center
    - Advisory Council, 1992-1995

    Reported CasesRepresentative Matters; Counsel to Palestinian pulmonary and critical Fellow at the George Washington University Hospital who was denied a green card based upon allegations that he provided material support for terrorism, even though the Israeli Military Court previously dismissed the charges. Successful outcome in Immigration Court where the Judge granted his application for a green card. He will now be able to finish his medical fellowship and remain in the U.S. with his U. S. citizen wife and children. Counsel to information technology companies for all immigration matters including H-1B and TN visas; labor certifications, green cards and consular processing; complex and difficult issues successfully resolved. Counsel to large Health Care organization for all immigration matters including H-1B and TN visa, labor certifications, green cards, and consular processing; complex and difficult issues successfully resolved. Counsel to a company in an I-9 Audit from the Immigration & Naturalization Service. Negotiated settlement favorable to client. Secured asylum for a pro bono client, a young Iraqi journalist who is in the United States as an exchange student at American University. His asylum status allows him to stay in the United States indefinitely, be able to work, and apply for a green card after one year. Obtained the approval of an O-1 visa, reserved for individuals with extraordinary ability, for a Canadian citizen to accept a high level executive position with Aramark. Counsel to a long-term permanent resident with a very large family of U.S. citizens/permanent residents who own businesses in the Washington D.C. metropolitan area in a deportation proceeding on a difficult cancellation of removal case. Result allowed client to maintain his permanent residence and reside in the United States. Counsel to individuals in post 9/11/02 secret hearings and material witness warrant cases before the Immigration Court and the U.S. District Court in Eastern District of Virginia. Counsel to Jordan-born client in rare federal court challenge to denial of application for naturalization. U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services accused client of lack of good moral character and alleged affiliation with Muslim organizations adverse to the U.S. Won case; in 90-page decision, the court ordered the client qualified for citizenship. Counsel to a company for immigration issues regarding foreign nurse recruitment in the Philippines, Canada and other countries; assistance in obtaining permanent residence and non-immigrant visas. Counsel to multinational company for all immigration matters including L-1 transfer of foreign nationals, H-1B, E - treaty visa and permanent residence and complex immigration issues. Counsel to foreign embassies regarding immigration and international dispute issues. Counsel regarding religious worker visas.

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    Office Information

    Denyse Sabagh

    505 9th Street, Suite 1000
    WashingtonDC 20004-2166


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