Our Team

We provide professional service and legal expertise similar to large firms while ensuring personal attention, compassion and accessibility of a small law practice. Let our legal team, with decades of combined experience, guide you in your US Immigration journey.

Shilpa Malik, Esq. – Managing Attorney

Prior to founding her own law firm, Shilpa Malik worked as a Senior Attorney at prominent New York City based law firms where she practiced Immigration Law exclusively. She has handled a myriad of Immigration cases and issues including Family-Based cases, Employment Based cases, Consular Processing, CSPA, Removal Representation and Defense. Attorney Malik has participated in several community outreach programs and was an Advocate with the Immigrants Rights Clinic at the New York University School of Law.

Attorney Malik has extensive experience in Immigration Court, Federal Immigration Court, and Federal Criminal Court Litigation proceedings in Miami, including court appearances for Master and Individual Hearings for cases involving Criminal and Overstay Waivers, CIMT Defense and petitions for review in the U.S. Courts of Appeals.

In addition to her experience in removal/deportation defense cases, she has prepared and filed non-immigrant and immigrant visa petitions including, but not limited to:

  • H-1B, E, L, O, P, H-3, J, K and U Visas, as well as I-130 and I-140 Immigrant Petitions with Accompanying Adjustment of Status (I-485).
  • EB-1 Extraordinary Ability Petition.
  • PERM Labor Certification with the Department of Labor.
  • EB-2 and EB-3 Employment based Green Cards.
  • Investment Based and Treaty Trader Visas and EB-5 Green Card.
  • Affirmative Political Asylum.
  • Marriage Cases.
  • Naturalization/Citizenship, 245(I), CSS/Lulac, LIFE Act, Removal of Conditions etc.

Attorney Malik has built a great reputation as one of the top attorneys in the South Florida area in deportation defense, employment immigration, PERM Labor Certification, investment based immigration, family and marriage based immigration cases. She works extremely hard to deliver the best outcome in immigration cases for every client of the firm.

Attorney Malik attended the New York University (NYU) School of Law where she distinguished herself by receiving the Deans Graduate Award. She is admitted to the New York State Bar and is a member of the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA), American Bar Association (ABA), New York State Bar Association and New York City Lawyers Association (NYCLA). Shilpa was born in India and is fluent in English, Hindi and Urdu.

Court Admissions:

  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit
  • U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York
  • U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York

Ashley Gruber – Senior Attorney

Attorney Ashley E. Gruber is originally from a small town west of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  She received her bachelor’s degree in political science and Spanish from Coastal Carolina University and her law degree from Florida International University College of Law in Miami, Florida.

Ms. Gruber is particularly adept at handling complicated matters. She has obtained approvals for many complex immigration cases, previously mishandled cases, and cases where it was evident that the reviewing USCIS officer had misunderstood or overlooked the facts or documents of the record.  Ms. Gruber’s creative and detailed approach has also helped clients obtain approvals following intricate Requests for Evidence and Notices of Intent to Deny.

Ms. Gruber has excelled in a variety of areas including but not limited to:

  • H-1B Specialty Occupation & L-1 Intracompany Visa.
  • E-2 Treaty Investor Visa, E-1 and E-3.
  • EB-1A, EB-1B, and EB-1C Green Card.
  • EB-2 and EB-2 NIW Green Card.
  • Non-immigrant visas: B-2, F, TN, K-1, O, P, H-3.
  • Other: I-130 Petitions, consular processing, adjustment of status, naturalization, removal of conditions on residency, affirmative asylum, work permits, advance parole, applications for temporary protected status.
  • Requests for Evidence, Motions to Reconsider, and Notices of Intent to Deny.

Ms. Gruber’s passion for immigration law originally stems from her grandparents.  Her maternal lineage is from Sparta and Crete, Greece.  Her paternal lineage is from Innsbruck and Vienna, Austria.  Her grandparents experienced the lasting effects of the immigration system and often shared their stories with her.  Despite being homeless, misunderstood, and shunned by society, her grandparents worked tirelessly to ensure their children had a better life.

When Ms. Gruber lived in Costa Rica as an undergraduate student, she was able to speak with people firsthand about their immigration struggles and about how difficult it can be to start life in the United States.  It was apparent to her that the same struggles her grandparents experienced because of the immigration system remained.

Prior to joining SGM Law Group, she practiced at immigration law firms in the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area and in Naples, Florida. She is conversant in Spanish and licensed to practice law in Florida.


Ardian Gjoka – Of Counsel

Attorney Ardian Gjoka is based out of Jacksonville, FL. Mr. Gjoka received his J.D. from Tirana University School of Law, Albania, in 1995. He worked as an attorney in Albania until he immigrated to the United States in 1999. Upon arriving in Jacksonville, Florida, he volunteered at Jacksonville Area Legal Aid, helping immigrants who had arrived in the US as refugees.

In 2003, Mr. Gjoka received the Degree of Master of Laws (LL.M.) in United States Legal Studies (with honors), from Golden Gate University School of Law, San Francisco, California. He is now admitted to the New York State Bar Association. From 2002 until 2012, Mr. Gjoka worked for various law firms in Jacksonville, Florida.

Native of Albania, Mr.Gjoka has been a passionate and dedicated advocate of the Albanian community for many years by assisting members of this community to find the best legal representation for all of their legal issues. He is a member of San Jose Refugee Ministry which provides support to individuals who have had to flee their countries of origin due to the tragedies of persecution and war.

Stephen Valencia – Senior Paralegal

Stephen Valencia specialize in Family based immigration matters and has over 8 years of experience. He has worked on a myriad of marriage-based green card cases of a high degree of complexity. Steve is an enthusiastic, self-motivated, and dedicated professional with a track record of holding positions with increasing responsibility. He possesses proven organization, analytical, research and administrative management skills. Steve is particularly known for his commitment to quality and passion for delivering results while exceeding expectations. He is naturally detail-oriented and known for being responsible, trustworthy, hard-working, and eager to learn and grow. Steve’s immigration expertise is in the following areas:

  • Fiance visa
  • I-130 petitions
  • Removal of conditions
  • Adjustment of status (via marriage to a USC or LPR)
  • Naturalization

Steve also possesses proven relationship-building talents and problem-solving abilities. Mr. Valencia also handles the office operations for our law firm. He is of Colombian descent and is fluent in both English and Spanish.


Samima Patel-Gonzalez – Senior Paralegal

Samima Patel-Gonzalez has over 14 years of experience working as an immigration paralegal. She has prepared a wide range of business immigration forms and petitions including: H-1B, H-3, E-1/E-2, L-1A, L-1B, TN, I-140 petition etc. She also possesses extensive experience with PERM Labor Certification process, from beginning to end.

Samima has significant experience with researching immigration and government regulations, case law and procedures to support client cases. In her role as a Senior Paralegal with our firm, she communicates extensively with clients regarding case status, request for evidence and immigration procedures.

Samima’s responsibilities include case management, drafting forms, monitoring deadlines, preparing immigration packets by analyzing and coordinating the gathering of information from clients from beginning until final disposition.


Claudia Villamil – Senior Paralegal

Claudia Villamil has over 6 years of experience working in the immigration industry. She has prepared a wide range of business immigration forms including: H-1B, H-3, I-129, I-140 petition etc.

Claudia has significant experience with researching immigration and government regulations, case law and procedures to support client cases. In her role as a Paralegal, she support our attorneys with preparing case documents,  communicates with firm’s clients (both Family and Employment immigration) regarding case status and immigration procedures. Claudia is originally from Colombia and is fluent in Spanish.


Jenny Garcia – Senior Legal Assistant

Jenny Garcia is a Senior Legal Assistant at our immigration law firm. She excels in developing and maintaining client relationships. Ms. Garcia handles client phone calls, emails, requests for documents and other firm needs.  She assists our attorneys with preparing case matters, scheduling consultations and various other legal tasks.

Ms. Garcia is particularly recognized for her bright personality and caring nature. She was born in Germany. She has lived in numerous countries and cities in the United States. She is both Colombian and Dominican. Ms. Garcia is fluent in Spanish.


Alexandria Howell – Legal Assistant

Alexandria Howell is the firm’s legal assistant.Alexandria is responsible for performing the daily clerical operations, including but not limited to: answering client calls, scheduling consultations, miscellaneous administrative functions, and providing overall support to our legal team and enhance office effectiveness. Thanks to her years of secretarial and customer service experience, she excels at all client communication while maintaining the day-to-day firm functions.

Alexandria was born in New Jersey and moved to Florida in 2012 to pursue her Criminal Justice degree at Florida International University.