Michael M. Benchetrit
Michael M. Benchetrit
Partner *
Co-Chair, Immigration Planning & Compliance Practice
One Southeast Third Avenue
25th Floor
Miami, FL 33131
 
Tel:
305.374.5600
Fax:
305.374.5095
 
 

Michael Benchetrit's practice is focused on immigration matters for national and multinational companies in the financial services, real estate development, manufacturing, engineering, and information services industries. He assists foreign nationals in obtaining intra-company transferee visas, treaty trader and treaty investors visas, specialty worker visas, and U.S. Permanent Residency. He also assists companies in developing and streamlining internal processes for the transfer of employees, and training in-house legal personnel in preparing applications and petitions for the temporary admission of foreign nationals. Michael's experience includes representation of individuals in matters before immigration trial judges and filing briefs before the Board of Immigrations Appeals, the U.S. Immigrations and Naturalization Administrative Appeals Office, and the Board of Alien Labor Certification Appeals.
 

Assist foreign nationals in obtaining intra-company transferee visas, treaty trader and treaty investors visas, specialty worker visas, and U.S. Permanent Residency.
 
Significant experience working with both Mexican and Canadian companies to obtain special category NAFTA visas.
 
Assist companies in developing and streamlining internal processes for the transfer of employees.
 
Handle training in-house legal personnel in preparing applications and petitions for the temporary admission of foreign nationals.
 
Pre-immigration planning for the specialized needs of high net worth foreign national entrepreneurs and investors.
 
Extensive experience in handling corporate immigration matters in the following industries: sports, maritime & yachting, non-profit organizations, hospitality, financial services, real estate development, manufacturing, engineering, and information services.
 
Established and oversaw the expansion of a major Peruvian precious metals company into the United States and developed their multinational transferee visa program enabling seamless entry into the United States for managers and specialized workers.
 
Assist major U.S. "Big Three" multinational automotive company in obtaining employment-based visas of all categories and permanent residence applications in the first, second, and third preference classifications, including national interest waivers.
 
Assist with strategic planning for major hotels and resorts in connection with their seasonal and year round recruitment and hiring needs to comply with immigration laws and provide for regulatory changes and employment-based visa shortfalls.
 
Representation of professional national football and professional basketball teams with the issuance of employment-based visas and permanent residence to professional athletes, coaching staff, and front office personnel.
 
Act as immigration counsel for numerous mergers and acquisitions in connection with the preservation of employment-based visas and applications for permanent residence upon closing.
 
Establish training programs for multinational corporations to effectuate the transfer of foreign entry level employees and junior management to engage in training programs in the U.S. and who would otherwise be barred from the commonly utilized employment-based nonimmigrant visa classifications.
 
Established and oversaw the expansion of two major Canadian specialized construction services companies into the United States and developed their multinational transferee visa program under the special provisions of the North American Free Trade Agreement to enable seamless entry into the United States for managers and specialized workers.
 
Advised a major foreign based yacht manufacturer regarding the effects of its nationwide corporate restructuring on its employment-based nonimmigrant visas and applications for permanent residence in connection with its substantial U.S. operations.
 
Advised major multinational medical equipment manufacturing company in successfully preserving temporary and permanent immigration benefits to foreign national employees of target company in a complicated asset purchase.
 
Representation of South American entrepreneur-investor in successfully obtaining an EB-5 immigrant petition approval in connection with the purchase of the assets of two franchise restaurants and expansion of employment for the reorganized business.
 
Trained the foreign human resources departments of substantial multinational corporation in connection with the processing of certain employment-based visas directly at U.S. Consulates overseas to avoid processing with the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (the successor to the Immigration and Naturalization Service).
 
Representation of major public university in connection with government audit of its I-9 Employment Eligibility Verification Forms. Subsequently conducted audit and training for same assessing compliance and improving procedures.
 

The Legal 500 2009-2013, Recommended for Labor & Employment-Immigration
 

The South Florida Center for Jewish Ethics, Speaker, "Immigration in America and Jewish Law," June 2013
 
CityWrights Miami, Speaker, "Immigration Issues Associated with Representing Artists and Importing Talent," June 2013
 
Akerman Seventeenth Annual Labor & Employment Law Seminar, Speaker, "Immigration Law 101," April 2012
 
Daily Business Review, Author, "Immigration Policies Create Job Opportunities," September 2011
 
Guide to Doing Business in Florida, Co-Author, "Labor and Employment," August 2011
 
Globes Israel Business News, Quoted, "How to Fulfill the Dream of Expanding Business Into the United States," March 2011
 
Interlaw Regional Conference, Speaker, "U.S. Market Entry Issues," June 2010
 
Akerman Fifteenth Annual Labor & Employment Law Seminar, Presenter, "Immigration Planning and Compliance - Demystifying the Rules," May 2010
 
Miami Council for International Visitors, Overview of the Earthquake in Haiti, Speaker, "Legal Briefing on Political Implications for Haitians Living in the U.S.," January 2010
 
The Florida Bar, Tax Section, The New Tax Lawyer Committee Seminar, Speaker, "Pre-Immigration Tax Planning for Foreign Nationals," September 2009
 
Akerman Practice Update, Author, "Stricter Enforcement of I-9 Procedures Underway," July 2009
 
Sterling Education Services Seminar, Speaker, "Immigration Issues in the Workplace," April 2009
 
Annual Akerman Labor & Employment Seminar, Presenter, "Labor & Employment Quiz: Test Your Knowledge," April 2009
 
Greater Miami Society for Human Resource Management, Speaker, "Immigration Law for the HR Practitioner," September 2008
 
Boat International USA, Quoted, "Homeland Security," 2007
 
Florida Yacht Brokers Association Annual Conference, Presenter, "Immigration Issues Specific to the Maritime Industry," September 2007
 
Miami-Dade Bar Association, Speaker, "Pre-Immigration Planning for Foreign Nationals," February 2007
 
Author, immigration articles for the Detroit Legal News, Lorman Education Services, and Sterling Education Services
 

State Bar of Connecticut, Member
 
American Immigration Lawyers Association, Member
 
American Bar Association, Member
 
Miami-Dade Jewish National Fund, Board of Directors, Chairman
 
The Sephardic Center of Bay Harbor Islands, Board Member
 
Israel-American Chamber of Commerce, Florida Region, Vice Chair
 
The Jewish National Fund, International Legal Advisory Committee, Member
 
Florida and Ner Yitzchak Congregation of South Florida, Member
 

Spanish
French
Hebrew
 



Michael M. Benchetrit


Labor & Employment

1 800 Hotels
Airbus Americas
Conforce, USA
Iberia Airlines
Jewish National Fund
Kaplan University
The Miami Dolphins
Spirit Airlines
Toy Tech Motors Corporation
Uni Logistics America
Welch Allyn
Westchester Country Club

M.A., University of Guelph, 1996
J.D., Thomas M. Cooley Law School, 1995
B.A., York University, 1991

Connecticut
* Not admitted to the practice of law in Florida
 
 
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