Dealing with the government is daunting, and you need an attorney who explains immigration or adoption options clearly and avoids confusing legal jargon. We want to give you control and confidence over your legal process. At Poarch Thompson Law, we commit ourselves to friendly, down-to-earth service. Our team of attorneys honestly advises you on how best to achieve your immigration or adoption goals.
Our attorneys and paralegals guide you through the process from start to finish to ensure you understand every step and every requirement. We pride ourselves in the fact that the majority of our clients are referrals from other attorneys, former clients, and client friends and family members.
Our goal is to make sure you have confidence and control over your legal process.
Want to stay up to date on the latest Poarch Thompson News?
Individual & Family
We believe that everyone should have the right to choose and pursue the life they want. We’ve been helping immigrants seeking a new life, and a new beginning for over 19 years.
As immigration attorneys in Virginia, we help families, employers, workers, asylum seekers and a broad range of individuals to complete and successfully navigate the immigration process in Virginia and across the southeastern US.
With one in six workers in Virginia an immigrant, we support businesses that need the competitive edge by hiring the right people.
We have partnered with many local firms and helped coordinate stakeholder briefings for regional government and organizations on immigration challenges and how to overcome them.
We specialize in firms looking to invest and grow in the southeastern US region.
It’s often said you cannot choose your family. Well, with adoption you can and you do. We never grow tired of seeing new families being created and starting out on a new life together.
The process of adoption brings reward beyond compare, but it can be time-consuming and requires persistence. It is essential to keep in mind that everyone is working toward the same goal—ensuring the safety and well-being of children.
Christine lockharT Poarch
A frequent speaker on immigration law, Christine serves on the Board of Governors of the Federal Bar Association’s Immigration Law Section and has worked extensively on the section’s legislative proposal for immigration court reform. Licensed in Texas (1999) and Virginia (2001) Christine is also licensed before the U.S. Supreme Court, the Fourth and Eleventh Circuit Courts of Appeals, the Southern District of Texas, and the Eastern and Western District Courts of Virginia. In 2014, Christine was named a Virginia Law Foundation Fellow, and in 2019 she became a Fellow of the Academy of Adoption and Assisted Reproduction Attorneys. She founded Poarch Law Firm in 2003 and welcomed Rachel Thompson to the firm as partner in January 2020 when it became Poarch Thompson Law.
Rachel L. D. Thompson
Rachel L. D. Thompson, an immigration and adoption attorney, is a partner at Poarch Thompson Law. She serves on the Federal Bar Association’s Advisory board, is a committee member of its Young Lawyers Division, is the Chair of their Law School Committee, and also speaks annually at its conferences. She has been the recipient of the FBA-ILS Younger “Lawyer of the Year Award” (2018), DePaul Community Resources presented her with the “Alison Parker Young Woman of Achievement Award” (2016), and listed in Roanoker Magazine’s Class of 2020 for “40 Under 40.” Alongside being one of Poarch Thompson Law’s managing attorney, she is also an adjunct professor at Liberty University School of Law. Rachel first moved to Southwest Virginia when she attended Liberty University School of Law (Lynchburg, Virginia), graduating in May 2012. The multiculturalism inherent in her native city (Philadelphia) and her family (Rachel’s mother was raised in South Africa during apartheid and her father was raised in Jamaica) instilled an early and profound love for diverse cultures, hope in the possibilities of immigration.
For the past three years, Jaime has been an integral part of and later, managed, a significant portion of Poarch Thompson Law’s asylum practice. Her career, which began at Poarch Thompson Law, involves primary and important work with asylum applicants, juveniles, and individuals who are victims of crimes. Jaime is an active member of the Federal Bar Association, Immigration Law Section and Younger Lawyer’s Division. She was selected as a Rising Star in Immigration Law for 2019 and is also a member of the Virginia State Bar.
Wendy Padilla-Madden works with Poarch Thompson Law’s immigration business cases lawyer in a “of counsel” capacity. Born and raised in Guatemala, Wendy has a personal connection to immigration as she first came to the United States in her early twenties on an employment visa. She always knew that in some way her career would somehow involve business. Wendy practiced law at BIG-Law firms for over 12 years and has significant in-house experience. Her in-house experience led her to establish and manage the Global Immigration program at Tesla, Inc. While there, she was responsible for the development, management and oversight of the entire Global Immigration program for all Tesla companies. Her experience and education (business + law) uniquely position her as a trusted advisor to the companies she works with. Wendy lectures nationally about business immigration law. She is considered an expert in I-9 and E-Verify compliance. Wendy currently serves on the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA)’s verification committee and is a certified Six Sigma Black Belt.
Elizabeth (Betty) Stevens
Elizabeth "Betty" Stevens
In 2018, Elizabeth “Betty” Stevens agreed to join Poarch Thompson Law in an of counsel capacity. Betty brings with her expertise in citizenship law, immigration agency processes, immigration detention, and litigation of immigration-related issues in the U.S. Court system. Mrs. Stevens received her J.D. magna cum laude from George Mason School of Law in 2001, and a B.S. in the Arabic Languages from Georgetown University. Mrs. Stevens is an active member of the Federal Bar Association, and currently serves as Chair of the FBA’s Immigration Law Section.
As Seen On:
U Visa Policy Update: Bona Fide Determination Process for Victims of Qualifying Crimes, and Employment Authorization and Deferred Action for Certain Petitioners
On June 14, 2021, USCIS issued a new policy which ultimately permits U Visa petitioners to obtain work authorization while waiting (for years!) for their petitions to be adjudicated.
This week, Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro N. Mayorkas directed U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) to place new limits on civil immigration enforcement actions in or near courthouses. A civil...
From the March 2021 Roanoke Bar Review article by Rachel Thompson, Esq. How has President Biden changed immigration? I’ve been asked that question dozens of times by family and friends. Immigration has been such a hot topic during the 2016 and 2020 elections and many...
201 S. College Ave, Salem VA 24153
The results of client matters depend on a variety of factors unique to each matter. Past successes do not predict or guarantee future successes.