Book with words Immigration Law and glasses.


Lewis & Associates serves clients from all over the world on a wide range of legal matters including family law, civil litigation and personal injury, wills and estate planning, refugee claims and appeals and immigration law and can help you determine your best options for successful immigration to Canada.
Canada is a refuge for survivors of persecution and people who need protection from the harm they will face in their homeland. Lewis & Associates specializes in Refugee Law and will handle your case from the first stage at the Immigration and Refugee Board Tribunal all the way through to Federal Court appeals.
Our experience and proven track record make us the perfect firm to handle all of your legal and immigration needs.

Lewis & Associates was founded in 1991 by Jacqueline Lewis. With over 27 years of immigration experience, this boutique law firm practices Canadian Immigration and Refugee Law, Family Law, Civil Litigation and Personal Injury Law and Wills and Estate Planning Law. The firm prides itself on the care and attention each client is personally served with.
Jacqueline Lewis opened the doors of Lewis & Associates in 1991 and has dedicated her practice to ensuring that her clients receive an unparalleled level of service. Starting out in Family Law she switched gears to head up a high volume Refugee Law practice; she has a proven history of successful appeal applications before the Federal Court, on Permanent Resident Applications based on  Humanitarian and Compassionate Grounds (H&C), Pre-Removal Risk Applications (PRRA), and has represented more than 2000 clients appearing before the Immigration and Refugee Board. Ms. Lewis is one of the most experienced Refugee Lawyers in Canada.


Jacqueline Lewis

Ms. Lewis received her Bachelor of Arts (Hons.) from York University in 1985. She completed her Bachelor of Laws at the University of Western Ontario in 1989 and continued on to Osgoode Hall, completing her Master of Law Degree in Administrative Law in 2001. Ms. Lewis has been the Managing Partner at Lewis & Associates since 1991. She has almost three decades of experience representing refugees before the Refugee Protection Division and challenging negative decisions before the Federal Court of Canada. She has taught Immigration and Refugee Law at Carlton University and Western University. Her passion for Immigration and Refugee Law has lead her to build a strong and talented team of lawyers to represent Immigration and Refugee clients with complex and diverse needs, from all over the world. At the beginning of 2019 Ms. Lewis opened the Family Law division of Lewis & Associates, returning to the starting roots of her law career.

Jordan Duviner, Lawyer

Mr. Jordan Duviner is an Associate at Lewis and Associates. He received his B.A. from University of Western Ontario and in 2014 moved to New York City where he studied at Jacob D. Fuchsberg Law Center and earned his Juris Doctorate. After graduating from Law School in New York, Jordan passed both the New York State and New Jersey State Bar exams and was waived into the District of Columbia. He was sworn in to these Jurisdictions in 2017. Jordan articled at Lewis and Associates, passed his Ontario Bar exams in 2016 and was called to the bar in 2017.

Jordan has been practicing exclusively in the field of immigration, citizenship and refugee law, handling all types of matters. He is licensed in the United States and maintains a focus on US Immigration having advised clients on various US Immigration Applications. Jordan has done Appeal work for the Federal Court of Canada as well as the Refugee Appeal Division. He has regularly worked on Stay of Deportation Applications, Pre-Removal Risk Assessments, Permanent Residency Applications based on Humanitarian and Compassionate Grounds, Deferral of Removal requests and many other areas of Immigration and Refugee Law.

Karim Escalona, Articling Student, J.D. Candidate

Karim Escalona is an articling student at Lewis and Associates. Karim completed an Honours Bachelor’s degree in Law and Society from York University and an Honours LL.B degree from the University of Sussex in Brighton, United Kingdom.

During law school, Karim was selected as one of twelve students to be a part of the University of Sussex’s Criminal Justice Project, a legal clinic that provides pro bono legal services to inmates convicted under the problematic joint enterprise law.

As part of the “Joint Enterprise, Not Guilty by Association” (JENGbA) branch of the clinic, Karim worked alongside other legal clinical students and lawyers to effect a change in certain aspects of the joint enterprise law.

After graduating law school in 2018, Karim was offered a scholarship to complete an LL.M at the University of Sussex. Instead, Karim accepted an offer for an LL.M in Canadian Common Law at Osgoode Hall Law School, which he successfully completed in 2019.

During his studies at Osgoode, Karim was part of the Pro Bono Students Canada program. It is during a placement that he was first introduced to Lewis and Associates and became exposed to immigration law and refugee law. Due to Karim’s keen interest in human rights law and its intersection with refugee law, he was thrilled to join the firm after completing his LL.M at Osgoode.

Alexander Erheim, Lawyer

Alexander Erheim completed his undergraduate degree at the University of Toronto, followed by law education at the University of Ottawa. He articled at the Ministry of the Attorney General of Ontario, at the Crown’s Civil Litigation Office. There he worked with a team on large scale litigation concerning physically and mentally disabled persons who resided at government residential hospitals. Following which, he completed a year placement at the Ministry of Community and Social Services, wherein he completed post-settlement work for the above settled lawsuits. Alexander then worked for two years at a law chambers, with a senior lawyer, in the areas of international business, corporate and immigration law. This work experience inspired him to join the law firm of Lewis & Associates in order to work exclusively in the field of immigration and refugee law.

Alexander is passionate about assisting foreign residents in effectively navigating the various economic immigration programs available to them. Alexander is also passionate about assisting refugee claimants in establishing a new home in Canada.

Alex Fomcenco, Lawyer NCA Candidate

Alex Fomcenco holds a Ph.D. from Aalborg University, Denmark, an LL.M. in Canadian Common Law from Osgoode Hall Law School, York University, as well as an LL.M. and an LL.B. from University of Copenhagen, Denmark.

He practiced as an in-house Legal Counsel for a few years while still working on his first LL.M. He then joined academia in 2012 and researched, taught, and published internationally on matters of general Corporate Law, EU law, Contract Law, North American Business and Corporate Law, and Transnational Mergers and Acquisitions for almost 8 years.

Today, Alex’ interests in law are broad and include also immigration law, real estate law, and criminal law.

Alex Fomcenco is fluent in English, Danish, and Russian.

Stephanie Fung, Lawyer

Ms. Stephanie K. Fung graduated from the University of Hong Kong with a Bachelor of Laws (LL. B.). She began her career in Immigration and Refugee Law at the Bureau d’Immigration du Quebec before articling at an Immigration Law Firm in Toronto. Since being called to the Bar in the Province of Ontario in 2015, she has represented clients at hearings before the Refugee Protection Division and has done appeals before the Refugee Appeal Division and Detention Review hearings before the Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada.

Stephanie’s expertise in Refugee Law has quickly grown to include, Pre-Removal Risk Assessment (PRRA) Applications and Applications for Leave and Judicial Review before the Federal Court of Canada. Stephanie is also an Immigration Lawyer and covers a wide range of immigration matters including Permanent Resident Applications based on Humanitarian and Compassionate grounds (H&C), Sponsorship Applications, Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) Applications and Work Permit Applications.

Vanessa Leigh, Lawyer

Vanessa Leigh joined Lewis & Associates in June 2018 after articling at an immigration law firm. She was called to the Ontario Bar in 2018.

Vanessa graduated from Osgoode Hall Law School in 2017. While in law school, Vanessa developed an interest in immigration and refugee law by working for Lifeline Syria and the Refugee Sponsorship Support Program. In addition, Vanessa served as a caseworker at Parkdale Community Legal Services in the Immigration Division. Vanessa also holds a Bachelor of Arts in International Relations from the University of British Columbia.

Vanessa speaks English and Spanish.

Peter Neill, Lawyer

Mr. Neill joined Lewis & Associates in August 2017 bringing with him a wealth of knowledge in Immigration and Refugee work. Born in Scotland, he did his MA in History at Glasgow University and graduated in 2006. He carried on doing his LLB at Glasgow University graduating with Distinction in 2011.

Peter has a keen interest in sports and played American Football for Glasgow University and has played Rugby on three continents.

Prior to joining Lewis Peter had his own law practice where he specialised in Immigration and Refugee work. He also has expertise in Spousal and Family Sponsorships and articled at a busy litigation office.

Peter is a gifted advocate who passionately represents Refugees at the Immigration and Refugee Board an average of four times week. He also is experienced in Appeal work at the Refugee Appeal Division of the IRB and at the Federal Court. Peter’s expertise extends to Pre-Removal Risk Assessments and Applications for Permanent Residence on Humanitarian and Compassionate Grounds.

Peter has worked with Refugee clients from Asia, Europe, the Middle East, Africa, South and Central America.

Alia Rosenstock, Lawyer

Prior to joining Lewis & Associates in December 2018, Alia founded Rosenstock Law Firm PC, specializing in refugee, immigration and entertainment law. Alia has experience representing clients migrating to Canada through the economic or refugee scheme, as well as students or temporary workers. She is particularly interested in helping clients navigate challenges arising from the intersection of criminal and immigration law. She previously worked as the Director, Opera Division and In-House Counsel for Dean Artists Management, a sister company of Talent House, Inc., in Toronto, Canada.

Alia received her Juris Doctor degree from Weldon Law School at Dalhousie University and holds a Certificate in Entertainment Law from Osgoode Hall, York University. Alia summered with Legal Aid Ontario in their migrant justice program and articled and began her practice at a full-service law firm in Ontario, where she specialized in municipal matters.

Alia is a member of the Legal Aid Ontario Refugee and Domestic Violence panels. She is a member in good standing of the Law Society of Ontario, the Canadian Bar Association/Ontario Bar Association, Refugee Lawyers Association and the Canadian Association of Refugee Lawyers. She sits on the Executive Board of the Refugee Lawyers Association and the Fawn Chamber Ensemble, and she is a member of the Practice Management Executive Committee of the Ontario Bar Association. She is a Committee Member of the Canadian Opera Company Opera Club (young patrons) and a proud supporter/participant of Nightwood Theatre’s annual Lawyer Show fundraiser.

Alia holds a Bachelor of Music in Classical Voice from the New England Conservatory of Music. Prior to practicing law, she was a musician and arts administrator, working in production, marketing and development positions for Glimmerglass Opera (NY, USA), Opera Boston (MA, USA), Festival Vancouver (Vancouver, BC), The Arts Club Theatre (Vancouver, BC) and the Vancouver Youth Symphony Orchestra (Vancouver, BC), among others. She is fluent in English and French and is proficient in Spanish.

Jordana Rotman

Ms. Jordana Rotman graduated from The University of Western Ontario with a Bachelor of Arts in 2008 and a double major in Sociology and Community Development. Jordana received her Juris Doctorate from Bond Univeristy in Australia in 2011. She articled at Boggs & Levin, a criminal defence law firm, from 2013 to 2014 and was called to the Bar in Ontario in June 2014. Jordana joined Lewis & Associates in January 2015 and currently practices exclusively in the area of Refugee Law. Her passion and primary focus is   representing Refugee Claimants before the Refugee Protection Division of the Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada.


Anoosh Salahshoor, Lawyer

Anoosh Salahshoor is a lawyer based in Toronto. He has appeared before the Superior Court of Justice, Toronto and Hamilton divisions. His guiding principle when advocating for clients is using his empathy and grit to get to the very heart of the matter so his clients’ vision and voice shine through.

Before joining Lewis & Associates, Anoosh was involved in the successful dismissal of a vexatious court action seeking $1.7mil in damages and against sixteen different parties. He was also involved in numerous high-stake real-estate and settlement negotiations and preparation of appeals to different bodies.

Anoosh has a bachelor of Honours from University of Toronto, and completed his law degree at the idyllic Thompson Rivers University in British Columbia.

Before becoming a lawyer, Anoosh worked as an immigration law clerk for many years, advocating for persons that experienced domestic violence, torture, and those with mental health issues.

Upon graduating from law school in 2017, Anoosh completed his articles with a Law Society bencher and a prominent real-estate, wills and estates lawyer in downtown Toronto.

Anoosh assists his clients in immigration matters, including citizenship law, sponsorships, cessation, and appellate applications. Anoosh also practices civil litigation, where his focus is on cyber defamation, tort of intrusion, and dealing with vexatious parties.

In his free time, Anoosh enjoys reading, playing chess and watching film noir.

Anoosh is fluent in Farsi and Turkish.

Anna Shabotynsky, Lawyer

Ms. Anna Shabotynsky joined Lewis & Associates as an articling student in 2016, after an intense and diverse period of international study and work experience. Anna obtained her Bachelor of Laws Degree at the University of Leicester in the United Kingdom in 2011 and studied Civil Law and European Union Law at the University of Strasbourg in France. She obtained her Master of Law Degree with a concentration in Immigration Law, at the University of Toronto, in 2014.

During her undergrad at McGill University in Montreal where she studied Political Science, Anna developed an interest and concern for human trafficking. She was very active in education and initiatives and led a project for orphans in the Ukraine, teaching them how to stay safe from the danger of human trafficking agents while looking for work abroad. In 2008, she interned at an NGO in Washington DC that focused on anti-human trafficking.

Working with the Federal Government at home and in the UK, Anna’s experience extended from processing immigration visas and applications at the Canadian High Commission in London, UK, to assisting in the Ministerial Intervention of refugee claims at the Reviews and Interventions Unit in Toronto.

With her commitment to making the lives of people better, it is not a surprise that Anna was invited to join a small team of IRCC staff who had the special opportunity to welcome and clothe over 10,000 Syrian refugees at Pearson International Airport. She was also invited to share her unique experience and success with Roma refugee cases in an interview when she gained the attention of the CBC in February 2018:

Anna has recently been drawing on her experience in the human trafficking area and has taken on a number of refugee cases that concern human trafficking and exploitation.

Anna speaks Ukrainian and French fluently and has good working knowledge of Russian and Spanish.

Subuhi, Siddiqui, Lawyer

Subuhi Siddiqui joined Lewis and Associates in November 2018. She has a passion for immigration and refugee law, is a strong advocate for her clients and has argued for them through applications as well as at court hearings. In her eight (8) years of experience in immigration (over 4 as a lawyer), Subuhi has gained a strong command over the law and continues to serve her clients in a variety of immigration and refugee matters.

Subuhi has always had a passion for international law and development and as such, graduated from the University of Toronto with an Honours B.A. in International Development and Economics. She pursued her law degree at City University in London, United Kingdom, and was called to the Bar in the Province of Ontario in 2014.

Having a keen interest in litigation, Subuhi has represented her clients before the Refugee Protection Division as well as in appeals before the Immigration Appeal Division and Refugee Appeal Division. She has also attended Detention Reviews before the Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada, as well as argued Judicial Reviews and Stay Motions before the Federal Court of Canada. With regards to civil matters, Subuhi has appeared before the Ontario and Superior Courts of Justice.

Through her years of experience, Subuhi has grown her expertise by taking on challenging files. She uses her background in international development and immigration to weave strong Pre-Removal Risk Assessment (PRRA) Applications along with Basis of Claim (BOC) submissions and Humanitarian and Compassionate (H&C) Applications. With regards to immigration, Subuhi has centered her focus around permanent, temporary and business applications. Some of these applications include (but are not limited to) Express Entry (Profile and Invitation to Apply), Spousal Sponsorships (Overseas and Inland with or without an Open Work Permit), Temporary Resident Permits (TRP), Temporary Resident Visas (TRV), Labour Market Impact Assessments (LMIA) and LMIA Exempt Applications such as Intra-Company transfers and C-11 (Significant Benefit) Work Permits. She is also very proud of the approvals she has attained on Medical Inadmissibility matters.

Subuhi has a reputation for retaining and working on complex cases and receiving positive results. She has a unique method of understanding her client’s immigration needs and creating an application specific to those needs. She takes great pride in being personable with her clients and effectively representing them. She places a high value on professionalism, client communication and confidentiality.

Carla Sturdy

Carla Sturdy has dedicated her career to the practice of Refugee Law, having represented thousands of refugee claimants at their refugee hearings before the Immigration and Refugee Board. 

Ms. Sturdy graduated from the University of Toronto in 1988 with a Bachelor of Arts (Hons.). She received her Bachelor of Laws from the University of British Columbia in 1993.

Ms. Sturdy began her law practice at Lewis & Associates in 1996 and has been with the firm for 22 years. 

Ms. Sturdy is also experienced in a wide variety of immigration matters, including matters before the Immigration Appeal Division, Applications for Judicial Review in the Federal Court as well as Humanitarian and Compassionate and PRRA applications.


Phil Trotter, Lawyer

Phil Trotter practices law with the intention to be of service to people. He does so by carefully listening, advising, and advocating for them with their best interests in mind.

Phil has extensive experience in refugee law matters, and his refugee law practice is now merged with Lewis & Associates.  He also has an independent law practice for areas outside of refugee law.  Phil’s law practice also includes civil litigation, with an emphasis on conflict resolution in the mutual interests of all parties.  He also has experience advising and helping businesses and charitable organizations set up and operate.

Phil represents people in various areas of law and has advocated on their behalf at administrative tribunals such as the Immigration and Refugee Board, the Federal Court, the Federal Court of Appeal, the Ontario Superior Court of Justice, and the Ontario Court of Appeal. Phil has advocated for people from many parts of the world, representing refugees successfully at the Immigration and Refugee Board and Federal Court.

Phil was born in Montreal and raised in Chateauguay, Quebec. As a young man living in Montreal, Phil gained life experience working in various jobs and as a recording and performing musician. Phil decided to engage in further education and went to University as a mature student where he studied history, sociology, economics, political science, and law at McGill University. After completing his law degree, he moved to Toronto, where he began working as a lawyer. Phil developed legal expertise working with other lawyers and decided to open his own law office in July 2010. He is also actively involved in community matters, offering pro-bono services to individuals and organizations such as the Tibetan Canadian Cultural Centre, and serving as Chair of the Board for the South Etobicoke Community Legal Services clinic.  Phil recently ran in the provincial election, seeking to become the NDP MPP for Etobicoke Lakeshore.  Phil sincerely likes people and is glad when he can be of beneficial service to them.

Chloe Turner-Bloom, Lawyer

Chloe is an articling student at Lewis & Associates. She obtained an LL.B in 2016 from the University of Exeter, in the U.K. She previously studied philosophy and psychology at McGill University in Montreal. In law school, Chloe founded Women & Law Exeter, a group to discuss the challenges women face in the legal profession. She has previously worked at the Children’s Aid Society and a boutique family law firm. Chloe is committed to working in the public interest.

Adam Wawrzkiewicz, Lawyer

Adam Wawrzkiewicz joined the firm in December of 2018, after articling and working as an associate with a small immigration and family law practice in Toronto for a year and a half. The next four years found Adam working in a small litigation firm in Mississauga where he practiced family law and civil litigation.

Adam was born in Canada soon after his parents immigrated here as refugees from Poland and is fluent in the Polish language. Although he grew up in the GTA, Adam’s family moved to the USA, where he attended high school, before returning to Toronto to study at University of Toronto’s Trinity College.

In 2008, Adam obtained his Honors B.A. from University of Toronto with high distinction, as an Economics and Philosophy Specialist, and was awarded the John. A. Jessup Memorial Award for having the highest marks in philosophy among his graduating class from Trinity College.

While in law school, Adam volunteered his time at the FCJ Refugee Centre, gaining valuable experience in immigration and refugee law. He obtained his Juris Doctor from Osgoode Hall Law School in June of 2012 and was called to the bar in June of 2013.

Adam has significant experience litigating family law, civil matters, and immigration cases. He has appeared before the Ontario and Superior Courts of Justice in Toronto, Brampton, Oshawa, and Newmarket on a variety of family matters, and has argued judicial review hearings for immigration cases at the Federal Court of Canada.

Adam’s education and experience brings a wealth of knowledge to our team.

Nikoletta Arghandewal, Immigration Consultant, Interpreter

Nicole Stokes, Immigration Consultant, Interpreter


Nicole was born in Budapest, Hungary. Her parents and family are well established in Hungary and Great Britain. Nicole has a variety of credentials and certifications in Social work. In Hungary she volunteered with Malteser Charity providing help and support for Roma families living in deep poverty. She also worked an interpreter/translator with various authorities in Hungary and in England.

Along with Hungarian, Nicole also speaks Turkish and provided interpretation services to the UK Border Service Agency and various hospitals in the South Kent region in England.

From 2006-2009 she studied Law and Social work at Open University College of Law, Canterbury campus. She paused her studies when she moved to Toronto, Canada in 2009.

In Toronto, Nicole continued to work as an interpreter/translator in Hungarian and Turkish for various Immigration Law Firms from 2010-2017.

From 2010 Nicole has been providing volunteer interpretation/translation services to the Toronto Police, CBSA and various hospitals in emergency situations including surgeries. She has also been volunteering with the Canadian Council for victims of Torture.

In 2011 Nicole received a Toronto Police Community Award for “lifesaving and outstanding contribution for the community”. She provided interpretation to the Toronto Police and the Toronto Fire Department, at 105 West Lodge Ave, during the evacuation of residents including hundreds of Hungarian Roma in a state emergency (fire).

Nicole continued her education in Canada. In February 2016 she graduated from Police Science and Law Enforcement with “highest honours” (College Diploma at ICS College), and in July 2016 she graduated as an Immigration Consultant at Herzing College.

Nicole joined Lewis and Associates in April 2017. She has been working on Hungarian Roma refugee cases, Humanitarian and Compassionate (H&C) applications and Pre-Removal Risk Assessment (PRRA) applications. She was also an integral part of successful Deferral of Removal cases for our clients.

Along with Hungarian Roma cases, Nicole has experience in South Asian (Afghanistan, Pakistan, India) and Middle-Eastern refugee claims and Roma refugee claims from other EU countries (Czech Republic, Slovakia, Moldavia, Romania, Serbia, Ukraine etc.)

Using her social worker skills and experience with torture and trauma survivors, Nicole is part of our special team along with Anna Shabotynsky, who provide full support and special assistance to victims of human trafficking and domestic abuse.

As an Immigration Consultant along with refugee matters, she has been working on various immigration applications, such as spousal sponsorships, protected person applications, express entry and Labour Market Impact Analysis (LMIA) applications from many countries.

Ildiko Moldovan, Interpreter

Ms. Ildiko Moldovan joined Lewis &Associates as an interpreter in May of 2017. Her previous work includes four years at the law office of Davis & Grice and two years at the Parkdale Intercultural Association as a Settlement Worker. Ms. Moldovan also worked at 911 Interpretation Services translating Romanian and Hungarian in person and on conference calls with Toronto Public Health Services and the Children’s Aid Society. While much of her focus is on Hungarian refugees of Roma ethnicity, she also works with Romanian and Hungarian clients.

Ms. Moldovan graduated from Evergreen College in 2012 as a Social Worker. She brings tremendous enthusiasm and commitment to her clients in their refugee and immigration matters; her passion for settlement work comes from her own experience immigrating to Canada.  Her clients count on her support at many stages of their immigration and refugee matters including appointments with: the CBSA, Panel Physician’s Office, Medical Assessments and Detentions, coordination with lawyers and translation of legal documents.  Ms. Moldovan is an integral member of the Lewis & Associates team and enjoys working closely with and learning from her lawyer and paralegal colleagues as they represent their clients with a wealth of knowledge and a high level of professionalism.

Beatrix Olah, Legal Assistant and Interpreter

Ms. Beatrix Olah was born and raised in Budapest-Hungary in Roma family of professional musicians. She continued the family tradition and played the violin for 16 years while completing her education with a double major in trade & management. In1994 Beatrix began work as the Sole Representative for the Design and Fashion House of Christian Dior until she left Hungary and immigrated to Canada in 1999.

In Canada, Beatrix commenced her education in Refugee Law by working through her own Refugee claim. In 2001 she began to work professionally in the field at the New Comer’s Centre in Hamilton. She also did freelance interpretation for the new Hungarian Roma Immigrants at Sanford Avenue Public School and in the community in Hamilton. Moving to Toronto in 2004 she joined the Roma Community Centre where she volunteered, helping Roma families for over 6 years to integrate into Canadian society.

Beatrix continued freelance interpretation in Toronto at the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA), Immigration, Refugee and Citizenship Canada (IRCC), in hospitals, Ontario Social Service Offices, with the Toronto Police and at various refugee law firms. She worked for 6 years at Joseph Farkas Law Firm as a Legal Assistant and Interpreter for Hungarian Roma matters. She joined Lewis and Associates in 2018 bringing her legal and interpreting skills to her support work in Immigration and Refugee matters at the RPD, IRCC and primarily focusing on appeal support work at the RAD, Federal Court and IRCC.

Linda Qian, Interpreter

Ms. Linda Qian graduated from the business program at the University of Shanghai. She ran her own successful global import/export business in China before immigrating to Canada.

In Canada Linda has worked as an interpreter for over two decades. She speaks Mandarin, Cantonese and the Shanghai dialect.

Linda has specialised in Immigration and Refugee cases assisting clients at Landing and CBSA interviews. She has also worked for social services and in Family Law.

Sayed-Jalal (jay) Kowsari, Farsi Interpreter

Jalal (Jay) from Iran, joined Lewis and Associates in March 2019 as a Farsi Interpreter working on a refugee claim. From the first day, he saw the opportunity to serve his people and he found it like a job straight from Heaven. This was a true promise of a valuable, rewarding and gratifying way of life!

Sixteen years ago, Jalal’s first job in Canada was an Agency Advocate for the ‘Daily Bread Food Bank’ in Toronto. Working for four years in the service of marginalized people from diverse backgrounds was a perfect match for the calling Jalal has always felt to be of assistance to others.

Jalal brings an intense passion and enthusiasm and a wealth of communication expertise and experience to his work with clients at Lewis & Associates. Establishing the kind of relationship that does not have to end even after the claim has been approved.

Working with clients, during this period, he has earned their documented trust as he had made it clear to all of them that “No Question is a Bad Question”.

Jalal believes that “THIS JOB” is his true calling despite over twenty years of schooling back home (in the area of Marketing) and an expensive private college degree in ‘Advertising Design’ from IADT (International Academy of Design & Technology) in Toronto.

As an Immigrant who has chosen ‘The Great Country of Canada’ as his new home, his motto is:


Emmanuel Kagasho Ahabwe, Paralegal Candidate, Case Worker and Interpreter

Bio Coming Soon…

Taylan Caliskan, Lawyer

Taylan joined Lewis & Associates as an articling student in January 2019 after graduating with an LL.M on Canadian Law from the University of Toronto. Prior to joining the firm, Taylan worked with a single lawyer handling refugee and immigration law cases as well as criminal law, family law and civil litigation matters.

Taylan’s refugee and immigration experience includes working on Basis of Claims, cases before the Refugee Protection Division, the Refugee Appeal Division, the Immigration Division and judicial reviews before the Federal Court. Taylan also has experience working on sponsorship applications and is interested in gaining further knowledge in all immigration matters.

Taylan earned his law degree from the Turkish-French bilingual Galatasaray University, located in Istanbul, Turkey, in 2009. Prior to his relocation to Canada, Taylan worked for seven years in Istanbul as a lawyer at local and international top tier law firms. His experience includes banking & finance and capital markets projects, transactions, regulatory issues and M&As. Taylan is also a licensed lawyer in Turkey with the Istanbul Bar Association.

Taylan is fluent in English, French and Turkish.

Vakkas Bilsin, Articling Student, NCA Candiddate

Vakkas is an NCA Candidate and joined Lewis & Associates in the spring of 2019. He is enrolled to GPLLM Program in Canadian Law at the University of Toronto as part of his licensing process in Canada. He obtained an LL.B in 2013 and LL.M in Public Law in 2015 from Galatasaray University, in Turkey. He also specialized in international law through LL.M in international legal studies at the University of Vienna.

Prior to joining Lewis & Associates, he served as a trainee lawyer at a corporate law firm in Turkey. He practiced banking law, data privacy, corporate law and public-private partnership. He helps clients with their immigration law matters.

He speaks English and Turkish.

Farah Issa, Articling Student

Farah Issa is an articling student at Lewis and Associates. Farah completed an Honours Bachelor’s degree from the University of Toronto, and a law degree from the University of Ottawa. Prior to law school, Farah worked at the Citizenship Branch of the Department of Immigration Refugees and Citizenship Canada, where he assessed citizenship applications and interviewed clients to determine if they met the requirements to become a citizen.

During law school, Farah began to develop a passion for immigration and refugee law. He worked at the Immigration Division of the Ottawa Community Legal Clinic, where he provided immigration services to low-income clients. He was also involved with the University of Ottawa’s Refugee Sponsorship Support Program, where he worked with counsel to provide pro bono legal services to individuals who wish to sponsor refugees from abroad.

During his spare time, Farah enjoys watching the news, exercising, and playing sports.

Farah is Fluent in Somali and has an intermediate knowledge of French.

Emma Kotzer, Articling Student

Emma joined Lewis & Associates as an articling student in November 2017 after graduating with an LL.B. from the University of Bristol in the United Kingdom. Prior to joining the firm, Emma was active in the field of refugee protection and immigration legal services in Toronto through her volunteer work at a community legal aid clinic and at a local refugee centre.

Emma has worked on cases before the Federal Court, the Refugee Appeal Division, the Refugee Protection Division and the Immigration Division. She also has experience working on applications for permanent residency on humanitarian and compassionate grounds, sponsorship applications, and Pre-Removal Risk Assessments.

Josef Brown, Law Clerk

Originating from the island of Jamaica, raised in the United States and finally emigrating to Canada in 2010; Josef Brown has had personal experience with immigration his entire life.
After a successful internship as an Honor Roll student from Toronto’s Centennial College, Josef joined Lewis & Associates as a Law Clerk in 2012. Over the years Josef has worked diligently assisting our lawyers in hundreds of Immigration and Refugee cases as well as appeals to the Federal Court of Canada representing people from all corners of the globe.
Josef recently took his passion for helping immigrants and refugees a step further by graduating Humber College’s accredited immigration consultant course with honors.

Kristen Forsythe, Paralegal, Client Coordinator

Kristen Forsythe joined Lewis & Associates in January 2018 bringing her passion for contributing to people and for social justice. She is a member of the Law Society of Ontario and did her Post Graduate studies in the Paralegal Program at Centennial College, graduating with Honours, where she sits on the Program Advisory Committee. Kristen brings strong project management, advocacy and client care skills to the Lewis team, built through two decades of a successful interior design career. Her work at Lewis involves preparation of Refugee Appeal Division and Federal Court Records, Stay of Removal Motions, Applications for Permanent Residence on Humanitarian and Compassionate Grounds, (H&C), Pre-Removal Risk Assessment Applications, Reopening Refugee Protection Division claims, Federal Court Judicial Review Applications, Detention Review hearings a variety of Immigration matters  and Client Intake.

Larry Lewis, Accounting

Larry Lewis joined Lewis & Associates as the Chief Financial Officer in June 2017. He is a graduate of the University of Toronto and spent his career as a Chief Procurement Officer and General Manager of a large manufacturing company.

Judy Bergman, Office Manager

Judy Bergman joined Lewis & Associates as the firm’s Administrator and has grown into the role of Office Manager. Judy brings over 20 years of administrative and advertising/marketing experience.

Pauline Levesque, Administrator

Ms. Pauline Levesque joined Lewis & Associates in December 2017 and is an integral part of the team at the centre of the hub. Pauline loves taking on new ideas and works best in an environment of positive change as well as routine processes. “There is something to be said to keeping yourself open to whatever comes your way!” The thriving fast-paced environment at Lewis & Associates, embedded in the structure and stability of the law is a perfect place for Pauline.
“This need to stretch myself and take on new adventures is a part of my work history. Taking on new work and personal challenges gives me a great sense of accomplishment. When I decided to go back to school back in 2001 to get a certificate in Computer Administrator, I felt a great sense of renewal and excitement when learning about hardware, software and networking. It was the beginning of a new road and now I am proficient and savvy with the latest technology and try to stay on top of trends. I have no idea what will come next and look forward to it!”

Heather Middlestadt, Administrator

Heather Middlestadt, Administrator/Reception

Heather Middlestadt joined Lewis & Associates at the end of December 2018. Working as an Administrator and Receptionist fits well with Heather’s passion for meeting new people and helping both clients and staff get what they need.

Heather’s early career was in radio, then sales, then family law, followed by making and selling artisanal chocolate. She is happy working with such a diverse group of colleagues in the hub of Lewis & Associates in the heart of Toronto.

Jesse Lewis, Administrator

Jesse Lewis joined the Lewis and Associates team in April 2019 as an Administrator. Jesse graduated from George Brown College’s acting for media program in the Spring of 2018.

Being the nephew of Jacki Lewis, Jesse is dedicated to working hard for the firm and making sure all pressing matters are taken care of swiftly and correctly.

Jesse is also pursuing a career in the entertainment industry in several capacities, such as Acting, Directing, Writing and Pro-wrestling.

Jasveen Puri, Summer Student, JD Candidate

Jasveen Puri is a summer student at Lewis & Associates. He is currently completing his Juris Doctorate degree at Queen’s University where he is also actively involved with Pro Bono Students Canada.

Prior to joining Lewis & Associates, Jasveen worked for over 4 years as an Economist & Policy Analyst with Industry Canada designing broadband programs to bring the Internet to Canadians living in rural and remote communities, including the Arctic. In this role, Jasveen also advised the Minister of Industry on a variety of business and regulatory issues relating to net neutrality, wholesale competition, and universal broadband. Since 2015, Jasveen has also headed the finance division at Medvisory Inc., a Toronto based firm focused on providing real estate intelligence and investment opportunities for Canadian physicians.

Jasveen holds a BA and MA from the University of Toronto. His graduate thesis focused on the Sanskrit epic, the Ramayana, one the longest books in world literature. He also holds a Masters in Public Policy from the University of Waterloo. Outside of work, Jasveen enjoys playing golf and performing magic for television, charity galas, and private events.


Lewis & Associates is here to help you come to Canada to pursue your dreams. You may want to visit, study or even become a citizen of this incredible country. We can help you. Our team offers you a wealth of experience and expertise. We are dedicated to your needs and work together tirelessly with you, translators, immigration consultants and third-party experts, towards the best possible outcome for your goals. When we take the quality of your life in our hands we regard it is a sacred responsibility – one of the many reasons choosing Lewis & Associates is a wise decision; you can depend on our team to be your team in Canada.

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