Meet the beautiful and bold Christine Han @Christine_DenverLawyer a first-generation Korean American top attorney in Aurora, Colorado. Recognized as one of the best in her game, with multiple awards and winning cases to prove it. Ms. Han comes from a family of immigrants and watching the struggle of her family gain immigration status shaped her dedication to her immigration clients and community. With specialties in immigration, family and criminal law, the Han Law Group takes pride in giving the utmost quality in service to ensure clients are satisfied with their representation. In our latest interview, President and founder of Han Law Group, Attorney Ms. Han gave us an insightful background on her endeavors running a firm that federally covers immigration issues in all states.
Tell us what brought you into the law?
I am a first generation Korean American; my parents immigrated here to the United States in the early 1980s. Ever since I was young, all I ever wanted to is to become an attorney. I’ve seen a lot of struggles and challenges immigrants go through, including my own parents and relatives. That is why I chose immigration law which came very natural to me. I also come from a hardworking, immigrant, family business background. So I already knew I wanted to have my own law firm. Entrepreneurship is second nature to me. I have other businesses outside of my law firm, including one where I am a mentor to law students and young attorneys who wish to start their own firm.
I’ve always been super independent, and a leader my entire life. I believe in being the hardest worker in the room. After I graduated from law school, I passed the bar in my 90th percentile, and opened my law firm within a month. Today, I have full time employees and we are expanding, which is exciting. When I graduated from law school, I knew I wanted to own my law firm; it was just a matter of time. My parents really molded me and my dad is my biggest role model and cheerleader. Because of him, I’ve always dreamed big in life.
What was one of the biggest challenges you had to face?
The biggest challenge was learning how to balance the role as an attorney and a business woman. As a young attorney managing cases and representing clients in a successful manner in and of it self is very hard and scary. But on top of that, I am a law firm owner and the leader of my team. Unlike law school, being a real-life attorney requires you to deal with real clients, their needs, and to zealously advocate for them. It comes with a lot of stress but I also have to be aware that I’m running a law firm and really balance is key. But you learn as you go. You learn to make better business decisions, become a better advocate, and make those tough judgement calls.
Did you have any business mentors?
My dad was really the go-to mentor in all aspects of my life. He is not an attorney, but I just learned so much about entrepreneurship from him. He’s self made and owning several businesses throughout his life showed me what a true business owner and leader should be. My dad is the true successful immigrant story and I feel lucky to have witnessed it; it has helped me tremendously running my business.
What are some of the biggest lessons you learned?
There are so many lessons I’ve learned and still learn today. But I would say, as a businesswoman, don’t be afraid to take risks. If you play small, you end up small. There are no failures in life because you always learn something from it. Know your niche, your type of audience, and your clientele. Not everyone is for you, and you shouldn’t be for everyone either. Furthermore, don’t be afraid to be different; different is good. In the beginning, being different was scary to me as a lawyer. In the legal profession, you’re expected to look a certain way, act a certain way, speak a certain way etc. It’s also a male dominant industry and can get tough for female attorneys. But I realized being my authentic self really worked for me. I’m not afraid to dress differently than other lawyers. I wear bright “feminine” colors (which is not the norm) and people love it. Whether I’m in court, in mediation, or at the office meeting a client, I’m always my authentic self and I love being different. And my clients love me for being different, and relatable. Really the biggest lesson I learned is that you can do your own thing—all the rules are fake. There is a piece of pie for everyone.
What field of law do you specialize in?
I specialize in three different areas—Immigration, Family law, and Criminal Defense. Immigration has always been my baby. I come from a family of immigrants and I’m very passionate about helping the immigrant community. Immigration is federal law, so I get to represent clients in all 50 states, and outside the United States. Although my office is based in Denver, I have clients in Venezuela, Peru, Mexico, South Korea, Vietnam, Japan, and so much more. I help foreign nationals to obtain U.S. visas which can be a complicated process. In the U.S., I have clients in LA, NY, TX, CO and so much more. I travel quite often to attend immigration interviews with my clients. I also practice family law and criminal defense in CO. Usually I represent immigrants for their divorce and custody matters, and criminal charges that can effect their legal status.
How do you manage clients’ expectations?
My philosophy is to be upfront and transparent with my clients, so they really understand their case.
I communicate with each and every one of my clients on the regular, and answer any questions they have. The legal process can be intimidating to them, and I try to make it easier for them as possible. I have a very trusting relationship with all of my clients and I think they appreciate my transparency and work ethic. My success rate is very, very high and have a high volume of cases. I attribute a lot of that to client referrals, which I love. My clients constantly come back to me over the years and I’m grateful for them to trust me with all their legal needs.
What is your five-year plan?
My goal is to expand my law firm even more. I would like several associate attorneys and offices in CA, NY, and TX for my immigration clients.
How do you balance your life?
As an attorney, you have to be at your best self in order to be a zealous advocate for your clients. You take on your client’s problems and solve them which is not an easy task. This requires me to have a healthy work and personal life balance. I try my best to take care of myself so I can be my best self for my clients. This includes recharging myself, traveling, spending time with my friends and family. Self-care and having a good balance is very important to me so I make it a priority.
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