Paul W. Virtue

Partner at Mayer Brown LLP

Paul W. Virtue

Paul W. Virtue

Partner at Mayer Brown LLP

Biography

Paul Virtue is a partner in the Employment & Benefits group focusing on global immigration and mobility issues. He is based in Mayer Brown’s Washington DC office where he represents clients on a broad range of employment-related immigration and compliance issues. He has more than 30 years of experience in immigration law and related policy, regulatory, and legislative areas. He advises clients on a full range of employment-related immigration, worksite compliance and policy issues.

Prior to entering private practice, Paul served as general counsel of the US Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS). As general counsel, Paul was the agency’s chief legal officer supervising a nationwide litigation staff of more than 600 lawyers and providing legal and policy advice to the INS Commissioner and senior officials, the Attorney General, the White House, and other federal agencies on issues under INS jurisdiction.

Paul held other high-level positions in the United States government during his 16 years of public service, including executive associate commissioner for programs and deputy general counsel. As executive associate commissioner, he authored more than two dozen memoranda setting forth agency guidance, including an outline for applying a new measure on "good faith" compliance enacted by Congress. The guidance, known eponymously as "The Virtue Memorandum," continues to form the basis for worksite enforcement investigations today. Paul also represented the United States on the International Air Transport Association (IATA) Control Authority Working Group, a forum for ongoing dialogue between the airlines and immigration officials from the member states in respect of the control of illegal migration. In 1997, he received the Attorney General’s Award for Distinguished Service for his leadership role in implementing the 1996 Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act.

Paul has testified before Congress on more than a dozen occasions as a senior level government official and more recently as an expert on immigration and compliance issues. His experience in providing advice and counsel to leaders at the highest levels of the federal government on compliance issues and immigration reform is a valuable resource for clients.

Paul has consistently been recognized by Chambers USA, Chambers Global, Washingtonian Magazine and Legal 500 as a leading lawyer in immigration law. His longstanding Chambers USA Band 1 ranking was elevated to "Senior Statesman" status in 2013. He regularly speaks and writes about immigration practice and policy and has contributed to major news agencies and publications, including MSNBC, CNN, the New York Times and the Wall Street Journal.

Overview
Career Highlights

United States Immigration and Naturalization Service

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3863

Number of Boards

2

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Partner at Mayer Brown LLP

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Partner at Mayer Brown LLP

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Partner at Porter Wright Morris & Arthur LLP

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Partner at Duane Morris LLP

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Former Senior Vice President, Labor, Immigration & Employee Benefits at The U.S. Chamber of Commerce

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Senior Partner at Mayer Brown LLP

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Chairman at Mayer Brown LLP

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Senior Partner, London at Mayer Brown LLP

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Co-Chair, Consumer Litigation & Class Actions Practice at Mayer Brown LLP

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Chairman, Middle East Practice at Mayer Brown LLP

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Paul W. Virtue
Partner at Mayer Brown LLP
Education
JD
Class of 1982

The West Virginia University College of Law is the professional school for the study of law at West Virginia University in Morgantown, West Virginia. The law school was established in 1878 as the first professional school in the state of West Virginia. It remains the only law school in the state. The law school is a member of the Association of American Law Schools and is accredited by the American Bar Association.

BS
Class of 1978

WVU will deliver high-quality education, excel in discovery and innovation, model a culture of diversity and inclusion, promote health and vitality, and build pathways for the exchange of knowledge and opportunity between the state, the nation, and the world.

Memberships
Member
Current

The American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) is the national association of over 11,000 attorneys and law professors who practice and teach immigration law. AILA Member attorneys represent U.S. families seeking permanent residence for close family members, as well as U.S. businesses seeking talent from the global marketplace. AILA Members also represent foreign students, entertainers, athletes, and asylum seekers, often on a pro bono basis. Founded in 1946, AILA is a nonpartisan, not-for-profit organization that provides continuing legal education, information, professional services, and expertise through its 38 chapters and over 50 national committees.

Career History
Partner
Prior

Baker & McKenzie LLP is a US based law firm that provides legal services. It serves diverse clients from dozens of offices across the Americas and in Europe, the Middle East, Africa, and Asia. The company was founded in 1949 and it is headquartered in Chicago, IL.

Partner
Current

Mayer Brown LLP provides legal services in areas of banking and finance; corporate and securities; litigation and dispute resolution; antitrust and competition; U.S. Supreme Court and appellate matters; employment and benefits; environmental; financial services regulatory and enforcement; government and global trade; intellectual property; real estate; tax; restructuring, bankruptcy and insolvency; and wealth management. The company was founded in 1881 and is headquartered in Chicago, IL.

Boards & Committees
Trustee Emeritus
Current

THE MISSION OF THE AMERICAN IMMIGRATION COUNCIL IS TO STRENGTHEN AMERICA BY HONORING OUR IMMIGRANT HISTORY AND SHAPING HOW AMERICANS THINK ABOUT AND ACT TOWARDS IMMIGRATION NOW AND IN THE FUTURE.

Member, Board of Directors
Prior

National Immigration Forum is an American private company located in Washington, DC, that operates as an immigrant advocacy organization.

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