Introducing North Star Immigration Law Inc.

We have been known as Elizabeth Wozniak Inc., Canadian Immigration Lawyers, since I incorporated in 2010. That name was never meant to be permanent and really, it always made me uncomfortable because the practice isn’t all about me: Lori Hill and I have been working together since 2007. Cam MacLean was with us as a paralegal before he even went to law school. Lara Green has been with us for only a year and a half but she has proven herself invaluable and indefatigable. They are all amazing lawyers, and all people I would hire in a second if I was in an immigration jam. But the old name stuck and lingered because, to be honest, it didn’t seem important. We have always believed that our approach to practicing immigration law is so distinct that we could have called ourselves Triple A or Acme or XYZ Immigration Law and it wouldn’t really have mattered.

But, as they say, there is a lot in a name. So we started talking about a new name a couple of years ago. Actually, we mostly just went in circles. For a bunch of people who find all kinds of creative solutions to complicated immigration and refugee matters, what we came up with was totally pathetic:

–  Hill, Wozniak, MacLean, Green… [we are not a partnership and anyway, the traditional law firm name format is not at all suitable for us]
–  Hypotenuse Law [cool idea but way too obscure, and sounds too much like obtuse]
–  Nova Scotia Immigration Lawyers [if that’s really the best we can do something is terribly wrong…]

Sometimes collaboration works and sometimes collaboration just results in the least imaginative, most watered-down and safest choice (the new Halifax library versus the new convention centre come to mind, for example). So I finally decided that name change by committee wasn’t getting us anywhere.

With the help of a couple of people outside the firm (read: spouse and friend) who are decidedly not lawyers, I started thinking about the idea of navigation. It’s an important theme in this part of Canada and it’s a lot of what we do in our day-to-day work: mapping out and managing the immigration path for people.

North Star jumped out immediately. And, bonus: it works with our existing url.

So there you have it and here we are: a group of 8 talented, smart and committed people in which no one’s name is more important than another’s and in which the sum of the whole is way more important than any individual part.

And as for the star, it’s definitely a traditional theme:

          So when at times the mob is swayed
          To carry praise or blame too far,
          We may choose something like a star.
          To stay our minds on and be staid.*

But it also sparkles.


*From Robert Frost, Choose Something Like a Star