• Casa Cornelia Law Center Casa Cornelia Law Center


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Mission Statement

Casa Cornelia Law Center (CCLC) is a 501(c)(3) public interest law firm providing quality legal services to victims of human and civil rights violations. CCLC has a primary commitment to indigent persons within the immigrant community in Southern California. CCLC seeks to educate others regarding the impact of immigration law and policy on the community and the public good.

The mission and spirit of CCLC is rooted in the tradition of service of the Society of the Holy Child Jesus and that of its founder, Cornelia Connelly. It encompasses the belief that God has chosen to need men and women in every age to reveal God's love and to make known the reality of God's saving presence through their service to others.

CCLC seeks to foster a spirit of simplicity, honesty, kindness, and cheerfulness among colleagues and with those served. It has chosen Thomas More as the exemplar of these qualities to mark its practice of law.


Persons with a credible fear of persecution or torture are legally entitled to protection within the United States through political asylum. However, because asylum applicants have no right to appointed counsel, many are prevented from presenting a legally sufficient case because they lack the financial means to hire an attorney. Casa Cornelia reaches out to these individuals, providing pro bono legal representation.

Domestic Violence
Among the most vulnerable in the community are undocumented women and children who are victims of domestic violence. Because their spouses or fathers have legal status, they are eligible to immigrate. However, their abusers refuse to legalize their status, and instead threaten their victims with deportation and separation from family. Through outreach clinics and pro bono representation, Casa Cornelia enables abused women and children to self-petition for immigration status each year.

Detained Unaccompanied Children
Each year, thousands of unaccompanied children enter the United States in search of safe haven or family reunification. Arrested and detained by federal immigration authorities, and with no right to appointed counsel, they would languish for months in detention without Casa Cornelia's intervention. To protect their legal rights and ensure safe family reunification, Casa Cornelia has a commitment to represent every detained unaccompanied child in San Diego.



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