Russell Abrutyn

Russell Abrutyn is a nationally-recognized immigration law attorney. He handles both complex and routine immigration matters. These include family, employment, naturalization, immigrant, nonimmigrant, waiver, asylum, removal defense, appellate, and litigation matters.

Russell graduated cum laude from the University of Michigan Law School in 1999, where he worked on the Michigan Journal of Race and Law. After more than 15 years of working at well-respected immigration law firms in Washington and Michigan states, he opened his own law firm in 2016 to better assist his clients in achieving their immigration dreams.

Court Memberships
  • Michigan
  • Washington State
  • First Circuit Court of Appeals
  • Second Circuit Court of Appeals
  • Third Circuit Court of Appeals
  • Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals
  • Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals
  • Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals
  • Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals
  • Eastern District of Michigan
  • Western District of Michigan
  • Eastern District of Washington
  • Western District of Washington
  • American Immigration Lawyers Association, Member 2001-present
  • AILA Amicus Committee, Member 2009-2020, Chair 2013-2014 & 2018-2020
  • Michigan Chapter of American Immigration Lawyers Association, Secretary 2017-2019, Treasurer 2019-2021, Vice Chair, 2021-2022, Chair 2022-present
  • AILA Message Center Moderator Committee, Member from 2014-present, Chair 2016-2018
  • Detroit Immigration Court Liaison Committee, Chair 2015-2017
  • U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services HQ Liaison Committee, Member 2014-2016
  • AILA Annual Conference Planning Committee, Member 2011-2012
  • Unauthorized Practice of Law Committee, Member 2010-2011
  • AILA Membership Committee, 2019-present, chair 2020-present
  • Michigan State Bar Immigration Law Section, Council member, 2019-2022
  • AILA Edith Lowenstein Memorial Award for excellence in advancing the practice of immigration law, 2020
  • AILA President's Commendations, 2014, 2018, 2019, 2021, 2023
  • AILA Sam Williamson Mentor of the Year, 2011
  • AILA Jack Wasserman Excellence in Litigation, co-recipient with Amicus Committee, 2010
Speaking Engagements
  • AILA Annual Conferences, 2010-2015, 2017-2023
  • Federal Bar Association Annual Immigration Law Conferences, 2014-2016, 2017-2020
  • Numerous additional national, local, and specialty conferences

Russell Abrutyn’s Representative Cases
  • Kada v. Barr, 946 F.3d 960 (6th Cir. 2020) – established standard for reopening a removal order based on ineffective assistance of counsel
  • Hernandez V. Whitaker, 914 F.3d 430 (6th Cir. 2019) – Held that Michigan felonious assault is categorically not a CIMT
  • Arangure v. Whitaker, 911 F.3d 333 (6th Cir. 2018) – reversed published BIA decision, applied res judicata to removal proceedings
  • Shuti v. Lynch, 828 F.3d 440 (6th Cir. 2016) – found 18 U.S.C. 16(b) unconstitutional
  • Matter of Ruzku, 26 I&N Dec. 731 (BIA 2016) (as amicus) - permitting use of sibling-to-sibling DNA testing in I-130 petitions
  • Mantena v. Johnson, 809 F.3d 721 (2d Cir. 2015) (as amicus) - finding jurisdiction to review procedures used to revoke I-140 petitions
  • Wisam v. Yousif, 796 F.3d 622 (6th Cir. 2015) - overturning denial of Iraqi Chaldean Christian’s asylum claim
  • Matter of Ordaz, 26 I&N Dec. 637 (BIA 2015) (as amicus) - stop-time rule for cancellation of removal is not triggered by Notice to Appear that is never filed with the Immigration Court
  • Husic v. Holder, 776 F.3d 59 (2d Cir. 2015) (as amicus) - 212(h) waiver is available to lawful permanent resident convicted of aggravated felony if the lawful permanent resident adjusted status in the United States
  • Hanna v. Holder, 740 F.3d 379 (6th Cir. 2014) - Permitted Iraqi Chaldean Christian to withdraw his concession of removability because Michigan’s Felonious Assault statute is not categorically a crime involving moral turpitude
  • Pruidze v. Holder, 632 F.3d 234 (6th Cir. 2011) - Struck down government’s post-departure bar on motions to reopen
  • Zhang v. Mukasey, 509 F3d 313 (6th Cir. 2007) - terminated removal proceedings against lawful permanent resident convicted of crime involving moral turpitude
  • Badwan v. Gonzales, 494 F.3d 566 (6th Cir. 2007) - reversed removal order against individual who was waiting for approval of an I-130 petition
  • Matovski v. Gonzales, 492 F.3d 722 (6th Cir. 2007) - reversed removal order against adjustment of status applicants who wanted to rely on INA 204(j) I-140 portability
  • Pickering v. Gonzales, 454 F.3d 525 (6th Cir. 2006) - reversed removal order against Canadian citizen whose drug conviction was vacated and terminated proceedings
  • State v. DeSantiago, 33 P.3d 394 (Wash. App. 2001) - reversing sentencing enhancement
  • State v. Martinez, 20 P.3d 1062 (Wash. App. 2001) - reversing conviction where court admitted hearsay statements from confidential informant
  • State v. Mendoza-Lopez, 19 P.3d 1123 (Wash. App. 2001) - reopening and dismissing guilty plea made by a minor