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Maria Luisa de Castro Foden Receives Lifetime Achievement Award

De Castro Foden founder Maria Luisa de Castro Foden has been solely dedicated to immigration law for the past 38 years. Born in Chile, she immigrated to the United States in 1967 as a foreign student to Douglas College, Rutgers University in New Jersey. When she received her juris doctor in 1978, she was the first Latina woman to graduate from the University of Connecticut School of Law. De Castro Foden has represented thousands of clients successfully in the ever-changing landscape of immigration law. With her services more crucial than ever, she has become a highly regarded specialist in the practice of immigration law, educating the community through television appearances and community presentations. Nominators said her legacy is one of tireless advocacy, vision and personal commitment to her clients.

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The Day: Hartford judges decide, deny near-record number of asylum cases

Only one in five asylum cases is decided in less than a year, TRAC said in a report about its data. Most asylum seekers receive court dates that are years out, meaning many cases happening today were scheduled in 2015 or 2016. Foden, however, was surprised to learn of the increase in denials. She said she hasn’t experienced the phenomenon among her own clients. The 35-year-old firm for which Foden works has one of the largest immigration caseloads in the state. Six of her clients were granted asylum this week, she said. “I think we’ve had more approvals than last year,” she said. However, Foden said she has had to work harder on each case since former Attorney General Jeff Sessions, in a June decision, said proof of domestic or gang violence alone wouldn’t qualify a person for asylum.

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