Our old site is no longer accessible, but you can still access your old account here if needed.

Exam Prep. Course: CA Immigration and Nationality Law Specialist Exam (CA)

Audio program! (check our CLE Programs page for live versions)

The CA Legal Specialization Exam for Immigration and Nationality Law is given every other year in odd years. This year it will be held October 24th, 2017.

Here is your chance to prepare for the exam with Certified Specialists who have taken the exam and who have written exams in the past.

At our Exam Prep course, Certified Specialists talk to you about what to expect when you take the exam and will provide an overview of the law in the subject areas listed by the bar as potential topics upon which they may test. Additionally, at least two sample questions from the bar’s published packet will be used as a practice exam and the faculty walks you through the important issues presented by the questions.

The faculty also prepared a few multiple-choice questions for you to take and during the program they discuss the answers. The bar does not release sample multiple-choice practice questions, so this is a unique opportunity to try a few.

By taking this course you can reduce the stress that goes with the unknown when preparing for an exam, you can get a refresher on those areas of the law of which you do not practice on a daily basis (or never handle), and you can get some insight on how to prepare and study for the exam from those that have gone before.

Recorded in 2015, the program is available on CD or for instant download and includes the handouts, PowerPoints, sample questions and all other materials provided to attendees for the program.


Early Study Special: Order this 2015 audio package and if we hold a two-day exam prep in 2017, you can apply $300.00 of the price towards your 2017 exam prep course enrollment or audio (currently in the planning stages for August, however, we cannot guarantee it will be held). Make a note in the comments section of your order and we’ll contact you to process your 2017 registration by hand.

Please note: Because we cannot know exactly what specific questions and issues the bar will test on, and their “potential topic list” is vast, our program covers those topics that the bar lists they might test. This means that we cannot guarantee every single question or issue that appears on your exam is covered in our course (that would pretty much be impossible). We also strongly recommend you begin studying for the exam early – at least as early as summer. Last minute studying, even with the help of this course, is always a risky proposition when it comes to such a difficult exam covering so many areas of law.



Click here for the Bar’s requirements regarding the exam and qualifications to be a specialist.

If you want to take the exam, register early! They have vastly reduced the cost of taking their exam this year (and have waived the extra fee they used to charge to use a computer). The bar has asked us to pass on their registration fee list for you to take their exam:

CA Bar Fees for taking their Legal Specialist Exam in 2017*:

If full payment is received by the bar on or before May 1, 2017: $100

If full payment is received by the bar on or before Sept. 1, 2017: $250

If full payment is received by the bar on or before Oct. 2, 2017: $350

*please note, these are the fees the CA Bar will charge you to take their exam. We are not affiliated with the bar and these are not related to the cost of our courses. To register for their exam you can go  here.

What You Will Learn

Immigration Specialization Exam Tips and Procedure

Family-based Immigrant Visas
• including CSPA; AOS; 245i
• Employment-based Immigrant Visas & Employment

• Employment-based Non-immigrant visas



Removal proceedings; bonds

Bars to admissibility; waivers


Practice Exam 2 Essay Questions

• Issue spotting re: two practice questions
• Suggested answers re: additional sample questions provided by bar and in our packet


“Great content. Got a lot out of it!” Sergio Copete, Esq.

“Fab outline, fine presentation, relevant.” Helena Younosi, Esq.

“Concise – clear explanation.”

“Focused, good.” Colin B. Desatnik, Esq.

“Very well done.”

“Good material, good delivery…”


Greg L. Berk, Esq.
Special Counsel
Sheppard, Mullin, Richter & Hampton LLP

Greg Berk is special counsel in the Labor and Employment Practice Group of Sheppard Mullin.  He leads the Firm’s corporate immigration practice.  He is also Chair of the Immigration Subcommittee for the State Bar of California International Law Section. 

Richard M. Green, Esq.
Partner, Certified Specialist in Immigration & Nationality Law, State Bar of California, Board of Legal Specialization
Carothers DiSante & Freudenberger, LLP

Rick Green is a CA Certified Legal Specialist in Immigration & Nationality Law.

He understands the importance of work and family, and places special emphasis on helping employers obtain immigration status and employment authorization in the United States for their employees and their family members. A highly experienced and skilled immigration lawyer, Green is a proud member of the American Immigration Lawyers Association and has been helping clients with their immigration issues for close to 15 years.

Whether you are an employer or employee seeking an employment based visa for a highly skilled employee, need to establish citizenship, want to bring a family member to the States under a family based visa, or need information regarding immigration opportunities for religious workers, Green puts his years of experience into play to assist his clients in an efficient and timely manner so they get what they need, when they need it.

Ann L. Kelleher, Esq.
Certified Legal Specialist, Immigration & Nationality Law
John R. Alcorn, APLC

Ann L. Kelleher graduated Magna Cum Laude from Whittier Law School in May 2006 and was admitted to practice law in California on December 5, 2006. While at Whittier, Ms. Kelleher received the CALI Excellence for the Future Award for achieving the highest grade for each course in Immigration and Naturalization Law, Evidence and Corporations. Ms. Kelleher was also on the Dean’s List and Honor Roll for every year of her attendance at the law school.

Ms. Kelleher attended California State University, Long Beach where she graduated Cum Laude with a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science in 2000. Ms. Kelleher has been with the Law Offices of John R. Alcorn since 2000 when she began working as a paralegal and continued while she attended law school.

Ms. Kelleher has also been admitted to practice before the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit as well as the United States District Court for the Central District of California.

John C. Lemacks II, Esq.
Partner, Certified Specialist in Immigration & Nationality Law, State Bar of California, Board of Legal Specialization
Tafapolsky & Smith, LLP

Mr. Lemacks represents medium and large multinational companies in a variety of industries. He provides strategic counsel on all matters involving U.S. Immigration and Nationality law, as well as policy and compliance. Prior to joining Tafapolsky & Smith, Mr. Lemacks was an Attorney with Fragomen, Del Rey, Bernsen & Loewy where he represented numerous mid-sized and large multinational companies in industries such as Biotechnology, Engineering, Oil and Gas, Pharmaceutical and IT.

He developed employer-specific immigration programs and guided clients through the immigration aspects of mergers and acquisitions as well as I-9 compliance. Mr. Lemacks successfully designated several Regional Centers under the EB-5 pilot program and represented numerous individual investors in the EB-5 process. Over the last 10 years, Mr. Lemacks has represented individuals before the AAO, EOIR, BIA, BALCA, and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. Mr. Lemacks has extensive experience working with all major employment-based nonimmigrant and immigrant visa categories as well as with family-based, U.S. citizenship matters and removal and deportation hearings.

Mr. Lemacks earned his JD from Southwestern University School of Law where he received the CALI Award in Immigration Law in 2000. He also holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science from California State University at Chico. He is a member of the State Bar of California, certified as a Specialist in Immigration and Nationality Law, and admitted to practice before the U.S. District Court, Central California as well as the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. Mr. Lemacks is the past Chair of the Orange County Bar Association, Immigration Law Section, and a Member of the American Immigration Lawyers Association. He is fluent in Spanish.

Nancy E. Miller, Esq.
Certified Specialist in Immigration & Nationality Law, State Bar of California, Board of Legal Specialization
Reeves, Miller, Zhang & Diza

Attorney Nancy E. Miller is Managing Partner of Reeves, Miller, Zhang & Diza. She heads the Deportation Defense and Federal Litigation Departments. She became a partner of the Firm in January 2008. She is certified by the State Bar of California as a Specialist in Immigration & Nationality Law. 

Attorney Miller has successfully represented hundreds of clients in political asylum, withholding of deportation, cancellation of removal, and criminal and fraud waiver cases before the Immigration Court, U.S. District Court and the United States Court of Appeals. She successfully argued the landmark case of Song v. INS – a U.S. District Court case involving the availability of 212(h) waivers for persons convicted of certain crimes. She is also lead counsel in the nationwide class action lawsuit Costello v. Napolitano and co-counsel in the consolidated case of De Osorio v. Mayorkas which allows adult children to retain the priority date of their parent’s petitions despite their having aged-out.

During the almost thirty years that Ms. Miller has been an attorney, she has defended clients in the immigration courts; obtained immigration and naturalization benefits for clients from the INS/DHS; defended clients in state and federal criminal proceedings; and pursued post-conviction relief, such as petitions for habeas corpus and writs of coram nobis, for non-citizens convicted of crimes. 

Alary E. Piibe, Esq.
Partner, Certified Specialist in Immigration & Nationality Law, State Bar of California, Board of Legal Specialization
Hill & Piibe, Immigration Attorneys

Alary E. Piibe is a long-time litigator and certified as a specialist in immigration and nationality law by the State Bar of California Board of Legal Specialization who has developed keen and aggressive courtroom skills. Mr. Piibe prides himself as a formidable strategist who will make persuasive, effective presentations, and who represents his clients in a straightforward manner before US ICE (U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Department of Homeland Security), US CIS (U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, Department of Homeland Security) and the Immigration Court. This litigation style translates into a benefit for his clients, and helps cause the government to make a thorough and careful consideration of the cases during the adjudication process. 

Mr. Piibe has considerable experience in applying for waivers for unlawful presence (otherwise known as “3/10 waivers” or “illegal presence” waivers). He treats each case as unique and devotes many firm resources in an “all-out” effort to obtain a successful conclusion that reunites a family. He is especially adept at criminal immigration issues, understanding the nuances that can mean the difference between success and deportation. Under his guidance, the firm has vacated numerous criminal convictions to cancel their effect on deportation and removal. 

Mr. Piibe’s experience before the Asylum Office and the Immigration Court gives his clients additional protection, and he has won several asylum cases involving complicated and technical issues, which most immigration attorneys would have declared hopeless. Mr. Piibe is a member of both the California State Bar as well as the federal District Courts, enabling him great latitude to appear in any Court to pursue his clients’ needs.


Audio Course Material Package Download: $725

Audio Course Material Package CD: $725, plus $7.50 shipping and, in CA, 9% sales tax.

CLE Credit

CA General:  This program is approved for 5.5 units of general CLE in California.

CA Certified Legal Specialist:  This program is approved for 5.5 units of Certified Legal Specialist CLE in California in Immigration and Nationality Law as follows:

  • 2.0 hours in subfield area B (Non-Immigrant Visas)
  • 2.0 hours in subfield area C (Deportation)
  • 1.5 hours in subfield area E (Citizenship and Naturalization).

This program is approved for CLE in the states listed above.  Upon request, Pincus Pro Ed will provide any information an attorney needs to support their application for CLE approval in other states other than what is listed above.


Terms and Policies

Recording policy: No audio or video recording of any program is permitted.

Seminar Cancellations: Should you be unable to attend for any reason, please inform us in writing no later than 14 days prior to the event and a credit voucher will be issued. If you prefer, a refund, less a $50 non-refundable deposit, will be issued. No refunds or credits will be given for cancellations received within 14 days of an event. However, if you notify us within 14 days of an event, and wish to convert your in-person attendance registration to an Audio CD package (with handout), we can do so. A small additional shipping charge, and sales tax in CA, will be incurred. No shipping charge is incurred for downloads. We will also issue a voucher for the amount paid if you notify us within 14 days and prefer not to have the audio recording.

Substitutions may be made at any time.

Webinars, Tele-seminars and Webcast Cancellations: Once log-in codes and passwords are issued for a webinar, tele-seminars or webcasts, a refund is not possible. If for any reason you cannot attend the event after you have received the codes, we will automatically convert your registration to an instant streaming/instant download or CD format and provide you with the information you need to access the recording after the program concludes and the recording is available.  Conversions to CD require a $7.50 shipping fee, and in CA, 9% sales tax.

Downloads/CDs/DVDs – Refund policy:

Downloads are non-returnable/non-refundable once purchased and received. Tapes, CDs and DVDs are returnable for a full refund or replacement if defective, within 90 days of purchase.

Reminder: The room temperature at hotels and other seminar locations are notoriously hard to control. Please bring a sweater or jacket in case it gets cold and/or layer as if you are going to the movies so you are comfortable.

$725.00 each

Find out what to expect and how to prepare for the exam.  Get an overview of all the major areas tested – including some you might not handle.  Take practice questions and receive issue spotting feedback.  Eliminate the stress that goes with the unknown when preparing for an exam. Recorded in 2015.