Sharon Barney is a Partner with Leech Tishman and a member of the Immigration and Family Law Groups. Sharon is based in the State College office, and focuses her practice in the area of immigration and family law matters.
Sharon regularly advises individuals and corporate clients on immigration issues and has a unique focus on the needs of international students, scholars, and research scientists. She guides corporate clients and foreign nationals on the process to obtain nonimmigrant visas, extend statuses, and ultimately permanent residence in the United States. Sharon also has expertise working with entrepreneurs and start-up companies in the STEM fields and recognizes their unique challenges in hiring workers and exploring immigration and business options.
Sharon advises her clients on permissible B-1 business visitor activities, F-1 CPT/OPT issues, H-1B petitions, L-1A and L-1B petitions, E-1 and E-2 treaty visas, the PERM process, employment-based petitions (EB-1/EB-2/EB-3), National Interest Waiver (NIW) petitions, I-9 compliance, adjustment of status issues, responses to Requests for Evidence, extensions of status and porting, as well as other immigration issues. She is also adept at representing clients in family sponsorship cases, including complicated matters involving criminal histories and previous removal orders; complex naturalization and citizenship matters, such as derived citizenship cases; and humanitarian cases, such as DACA and VAWA petitions.
In addition to her immigration law work, Sharon counsels clients on family law matters including adoption, divorce, alimony and spousal support, equitable distribution, custody (including relocation and modification issues), child support, and Protection from Abuse (PFA) matters. Sharon offers a unique blend of expertise on the intersection of immigration law and family law matters, including guidance on prenuptial agreements and affidavits of support, as well as the impact of divorce on immigration petitions.
Prior to joining Leech Tishman, Sharon was a solo practitioner, where she provided client-centered legal services in family law, immigration law, and victim rights matters. She is an active member of the State College community and headed the first Multicultural Unity Fair in Centre County in 2018. Sharon holds leadership positions within the Pennsylvania Bar Association, is an active member of the Centre County Bar Association, and has been a member of the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) since 2013. She regularly educates the community on immigration law issues as a guest speaker.
J.D, Northeastern University School of Law
B.A. in English, University of Rochester
Law Office of Sharon Barney
International Institute of New England
Centre County Women’s Resource Center, Civil Legal Representation Project
American Bar Association
Pennsylvania Bar Association (Co-Chair, Legal Services to the Public Committee; At-Large Chair to Committee and Section Liaisons, Young Lawyers’ Division Executive Council; Diversity Summit Co-Vice Chair, Minority Bar Committee; 2017-2018 Bar Leadership Institute Class; Member, Immigration Law Committee; Member, Family Law Section)
Centre County Bar Association (President (2020); Past Chair, Young Lawyers’ Division; Past Co-Chair, Public Interest/Pro Bono Committee)
American Immigration Lawyers’ Association – Philadelphia and Pittsburgh Chapters
Center of Immigrants’ Rights, Penn State Law (Participant, Interdisciplinary Roundtable on Immigration)