Expertise You Can Trust
Daniel Shanfield, Esq.
Founder and Managing Attorney
Daniel Shanfield has succeeded in some of the most difficult immigration cases. Overseas, he led an appeals project to overturn visa denials by the U.S. Consulate, and has overseen numerous successful appeals for detained immigrants in the United States. He is a former INS litigation attorney who advised the government on a broad spectrum of immigration law issues, and was adjunct clinical law professor at New York Law School in Downtown Manhattan. Before entering private practice, Daniel was the Legal Services Manager with the U.S. refugee program in Europe, where he brought immigrants to safety and helped reunite them with loved ones in the United States. Daniel has also served as a migration and refugee advisor to the United Nations, and as an attorney overseeing pro bono legal representation for the Lawyers Committee for Human Rights, now Human Rights First. His legal knowledge and uncommon insights are the critical difference behind his clients’ success.
Daniel is a graduate of the University of California, Berkeley, Boalt Hall School of Law and UCLA (magna cum laude). He is admitted to practice before the California Supreme Court, Federal Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, the Federal District Court, Executive Office for Immigration Review, State Department, and Department of Homeland Security. He is currently the Consulate General of Mexico in San Jose Liaison for the
Santa Clara Valley Chapter of the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA SCV). Daniel previously served as AILA SCV Chapter Chair, and was Chair of the Immigration Section of the Santa Clara County Bar Association. Daniel's experience and skills have also been recognized by the Bar Association of San Francisco, which has selected him to serve on its Pro Bono Immigration Court Panel. Daniel holds a deep commitment to pro bono service, serving as an asylum law mentor for the Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights in San Francisco, and on the Legal Advisory Board of the Stanford Law School Immigrants’ Rights Clinic.
For his efforts on behalf of Northern California's immigrant community, Daniel was awarded the 2011 Premio Tequio by the Consulate General of Mexico in San Jose.
Daniel, a California native, is fluent in Spanish and French. As the child of parents from Latin America, he understands the challenges his immigrant clients face.
Click here to view Daniel Shanfield's Linkedin profile.
Attorney of Counsel
Merle Kahn is Attorney Of Counsel for our office. Merle has two decades of experience in immigration law, where she has focused on removal defense especially for those who have been convicted of crimes, and on family based immigration cases. For the past several years, Merle has served as a legal consultant on the most complex immigration cases often involving criminal matters. Merle previously worked with the Immigrant Legal Resource Center (ILRC) as a staff attorney and taught the ILRC’s 40 hour immigration course for legal practitioners throughout the San Francisco Bay Area. Merle also worked for Angela M. Bean & Associates where she represented clients before INS/DHS, and litigated immigration cases before the Immigration Courts, the Board of Immigration Appeals and the Ninth Circuit. Merle is a mentor attorney for the San Francisco-based Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights’ Asylum Project and counsels pro bono attorneys on difficult asylum claims. She is also Jewish Family Services Legal Clinic Director for the
American Immigration Lawyers Association Santa Clara Valley Chapter (SCV). This mixture of academic and hands-on legal experience makes Merle uniquely qualified to handle complex immigration issues. Prior to practicing immigration law, Merle was a prosecutor for the Attorney Registration and Disciplinary Committee of the State Bar of Illinois and for the D.C. Bar prosecuting attorney misconduct.
Merle is a graduate of the George Washington University National Law Center (J.D.) in Washington, DC, and the University of Illinois Champaign-Urbana (B.A., High Honors in English Literature).
Associations and Memberships Include:
- State Bar of California
- Bar of the District of Columbia
- U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
- U.S. District Court For the Northern District of California
- American Immigration Lawyers Association
Ariel Gould is an Associate Attorney with our office. Her background focuses on immigration law and issues of international human rights law. Before joining our office, Ariel worked as a fellow for the Center for Justice and International Law in Buenos Aires, Argentina, defending victims of human rights abuses before the Inter-American Commission and Inter-American Court of Human Rights. Ariel also served as an intern with Ayuda and Kids In Need of Defense (KIND), two non-profits that focus on providing immigration services in Northern Virginia and Baltimore, respectively.
Ariel is a graduate of the George Washington University Law School (J.D.) and holds a Master’s degree in Latin American and Hemispheric Studies from the Elliott School of International Affairs. She is a graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where she double majored in International/Area Studies (B.A.) and Spanish (B.A.).
Immigration Service Coordinator
Diana is the Firm's Immigration Services Coordinator, and comes to our office with 10 years' experience working with immigrants in the nonprofit sector. Diana previously served with Catholic Charities in San José, California as a Board of Immigration Appeals Accredited Representative, representing immigrants in all manner of immigration cases before USCIS. Prior to her work in the field of immigration law, Diana assisted domestic violence before the family courts in obtaining protective orders.
Diana is a graduate of Santa Clara University (B.A. History, Latin America emphasis) and Northwestern School of Law of Lewis & Clark College (J.D.) in Portland, Oregon, where she was a member of the Cornelius Honor Society, the Latino Legal Society, and Team Captain for the Hispanic National Bar Association Moot Court Competition Team. While in law school, Diana was member and recipient of the summer stipend for the Public Interest Law Project that awards scholarships to students dedicated to public interest.
An immigrant herself, Diana can relate to the struggles immigrants face in the United States, as well as the empowerment of becoming a U.S. legal resident.
Esmeralda is the firm's paralegal. She has worked in the area of immigration law since 2006. Prior to joining our San Jose office, Esmeralda served as a Board of Immigration Appeals Accredited Representative with Catholic Charities of Santa Clara County, working with immigrant victims of crime and successfully representing numerous domestic violence survivors in obtaining U visa status and permanent residency. Esmeralda has worked extensively with non-profits before entering the immigration field. She mentored at-risk high school youth in San Jose, California, and also served as an Americorps volunteer in Seattle, Washington as a service learning coordinator. Esmeralda is a graduate of the University of California, Berkeley (B.A. Political Science).
What We Can Do For You
No matter what you’re facing, our firm can help you sort out the best solution for your immigration needs. Here are some of the services we offer:
Our firm can help English, Spanish, and French-speaking clients, and arrange for interpreters in almost any language. No matter what you’re facing, we can help you sort out the best solution for your immigration needs.
View our firm's profile at FindanImmigrationAttorney.com.
Contact Law Offices of Daniel Shanfield - Immigration Defense, PC today!