Pierre Georges Bonnefil has extensive experience representing companies in a wide range of immigration matters. He represents private and publicly held organizations in a variety of areas, with significant involvement in the online commerce, manufacturing, technology, finance, retail and fashion industries. Mr. Bonnefil represents clients before the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, various offices of the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), U.S. Customs and Border Protection, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), the U.S. Department of Labor, the U.S. Department of State, the U.S. Department of Justice and before local departments of labor. He currently acts as Immigration Counsel for the French Consulate General in New York and has served as an Attorney General Honors Attorney with the USCIS.
Mr. Bonnefil has lectured at St. John’s University School of Law and has served as an immigration counselor at Medgar Evers College of the City University of New York. In 2015, Mr. Bonnefil was appointed a knight in the French Legion of Honor by the Consul General of France in New York. One of France’s highest honors bestowed upon French nationals, it was presented to him in recognition of his outstanding public service. Mr. Bonnefil is also a recipient of the French Order of Merit and a member of the board of the American Society of the French Order of Merit.
Mr. Bonnefil is a 1988 graduate of St. John’s University School of Law and a graduate of Fairfield University. He speaks French, Italian, Spanish and Creole.
Areas of Practice
Immigrant Discrimination and Form I-9 Verification
Foreign Multinational Counseling and Litigation
Represented an investment management company in procuring an urgent NIE for a consultant who had an extremely small window to enter the US to attend to some critical business matters; the matter was complicated by the fact that this was a consultant and not a permanent employee.
Represented an archeological program in procuring permanent residency, via the PERM process, for a Jordanian senior archeologist working at the client's site in Yemen, along with his son.
Represented an Indian employee in a particularly complicated immigration proceeding wherein his L-1A visa and I-140 EB-1 petition were eventually approved, granting the client and his family, including an aging-out child, permanent residence.
Represented a UK-based infrastructure services provider in securing National interest Exceptions (NIE), on an expedited basis, for two senior employees to allow them to enter the US on important business.
Represented a global commercial real estate services firm when one of their key employee's L-1B visa extension was denied. Successfully expedited the process for obtaining an L-1A visa, extending his stay in the United States by two years.
Represented a Senior Managing Director of the Blackstone Group, who is a US Citizen, and his wife, a Canadian Citizen, along with their two children and British nanny, who needed to return to the U.S.; the medical condition of one of the children, along with the travel restrictions due to Covid-19, posed complications, but the return was managed seamlessly.
Represented a senior manager at SKF USA who was stuck in Germany due to the COVID-19 travel ban, and who worked with the U.S. Department of Defense; submitted a National Interest Waiver at the US Consulate in Milan and obtained it in an expedited fashion, enabling him to continue his employment in the US in L-1A status.
Represented a media company in securing an O-1 nonimmigrant visa extension for an employee who had accrued more than six months of unlawful presence; submitted a Niunc-pro-Tunc extension petition, which the CIS granted retroactively so that the client was able to remain and work in the US.
Represented a nonprofit in applying for an O-1 for its social media strategist, which was approved; assisted the foreign national in getting a National Interest Exemption and an O-1 visa so that she could enter the US to start her position.
Represented a client with severe dementia who had also suffered a stroke leaving her disabled, which would have made it very difficult for her to go through a naturalization interview; submitted an N-648, Medical Certification for Disability Exceptions request to allow her to obtain US citizenship without having to go through the typical interview process, which was granted, and she was sworn in the same day.
Assisted a photographer client, whose photos of the Black Lives Matter protests appeared in major publications, pro bono with his N-400 application, successfully walking him through the process; he is now a U.S. citizen.
- New York
- Supreme Court of the United States
- St. John's University School of Law, J.D., 1988
- Fairfield University, B.S., 1980
Duane Morris LLP
- Partner, 2018-present
Epstein Becker & Green PC
- Member, 2006-2018
Gibney Anthony & Flaherty LLP
- Member, 1994-2006
Daniel C. Gallagher PC
- Associate, 1989-1994
U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Service
- Trial Attorney, 1988-1989
American Immigration Lawyers Association
French American Chamber of Commerce, New York Chapter
- Board of Directors, 2015-2017
American Society of French National Order of Merit
Honors and Awards
- Recipient of the 7th Annual Duane Morris Pro Bono Leadership Award, 2021
- Featured, "People in the News—Dec. 17, 2021—Lamb McErlane, Duane Morris," The Legal Intelligencer, December 17, 2021
Quoted, "Les entrepreneurs français dans le collimateur de l’immigration US?" Le Petit Journal, August 20, 2019
Featured, "Health Risks for Working Long Hours," Fox 5 New York, July 23, 2019
Featured, "This Duane Morris Partner Survived a Stroke. He Wants to Help Others Do the Same." Law.com, May 29, 2019
Quoted, "Immigration Reform: Should Flooring Dealers Worry?" Floor Covering News, January 21, 2019
Quoted, "New Hurdle For Those Seeking U.S. Green Cards And Visas," NPR, September 16, 2018
Cover Feature, Interviewed, "The Life and Legacy of a Global Citizen," Color Magazine, November 2017
Selected Speaking Engagements
- Moderator, "The Lookout & In Living Memory," WORLD Channel Twitter Spaces Panel, June 6, 2022
- Speaker, American Heart Association Counsel for a Cause Board Meeting, February 1, 2022
- Speaker, "2022 Business Immigration Outlook: Navigating in Unprecedented Times," French American Chamber of Commerce and Duane Morris LLP Webinar, February 17, 2022
- Speaker, "Women Who Lead in Law," COLOR Magazine Webinar, March 29, 2021
- Speaker, "Immigration Updates," The New Reality of Workplace Law and Practice in the COVID-19 Era, Duane Morris LLP, Webinar, November 9, 2020
- Speaker, "US Immigration Under COVID-19 Measures," Expatise, Webiinar, July 24, 2020
- Speaker, "Update on Immigration Topics Affecting the U.S. - Mexico Business and Professional Community," The United States-Mexico Chamber of Commerce, Webinar, July 7, 2020
- Speaker, "Heart Advisory Council," American Heart Association, New York City, February 4, 2020
- Speaker, "Laugh Your Way to A Healthier You," The Heart Speaks Foundation, New York City, January 10, 2020
- Panelist, "#MBBA Learns: Hot Topics at the Intersection of Immigration and Employment Law," Metropolitan Black Bar Association, Webinar, November 18, 2019
Panelist, FHW Conference on Race, Ethnicity and the Impact on Immigration, St. John's University School of Law, June 13, 2019
Panelist, Immigration Law Webinar, Metropolitan Black Bar Association, May 20, 2019
Speaker, "New I-9 and Immigration Compliance Update," Webinar, Duane Morris Institute, April 17, 2019
Speaker, "H-1B Cap: Everything Employers Need to Know for April 1, 2019," Webinar, Duane Morris Institute, February 5, 2019
Speaker, "J-1 Visas & Immigration In the Current Political Landscape," French American Chamber of Commerce, New York City, November 29, 2018
Speaker, "Expat Couple and How to Best Plan Your Partner's Expat Journey," Consulat général de France, New York City, October 18, 2018
Speaker, Conférence droit de l'immigration, Consulat général de France, New York City, September 6, 2018
Interviewed for Stroke Survivor Story, New York-Presbyterian Hospital, April 26, 2013