Maria del Carmen Ramos devotes a substantial portion of her practice to counseling clients on immigration and employment issues. On the immigration side, Maria has extensive experience helping employers obtain H-1B and E visas on behalf of foreign workers employed in specialty occupations. She also has experience helping U.S. and foreign-based companies with global operations obtain L-1 visas on behalf of their foreign-based employees so that the employees can transfer to the United States to assist with U.S. operations or open up a new office, as well as helping those companies obtain visas in China and Mexico on behalf of their U.S.-based employees. Maria also helps foreign workers, including but not limited to, entrepreneurs, physicians, dentists, engineers, and professional athletes, obtain permanent residency based on their employment in the U.S. In addition to helping employers obtain visas for foreign workers, she routinely conducts audits for clients to ensure they comply with the requirements for verifying their employees’ eligibility to work in the United States (I-9 compliance). Additionally, she is the Blog Editor (and a frequent contributor) to The Immigration Bulletin.
On the labor and employment side, Maria assists corporate clients in drafting and implementing workplace policies and procedures (including employee handbooks, sexual harassment policies, and employment eligibility policies). She also has extensive experience drafting and litigating employment agreements and litigating discrimination and other employment matters.
Before joining Shumaker in 2004, Maria practiced with two large statewide firms handling complex commercial litigation matters. While at Shumaker, she continued to handle complex commercial matters, such as labor and employment, intellectual property, copyright, trademark, and bankruptcy and creditor's rights disputes, in state and federal courts throughout Florida while at Shumaker. She also served as general counsel to a number of community associations, advising them on a variety of issues, such as the validity and interpretation of their governing documents, disputes regarding the election of board members, and how to conduct monthly and annual meetings (including drafting and amending declarations, by-laws, and articles of incorporation).
She also is actively involved in the community. She formerly chaired Shumaker’s “Leadership Shumaker” program, a firm committee that organizes fundraisers all year long to raise funds for the of benefit not-for-profit charitable and arts organizations in the Tampa Bay area. During her tenure, Leadership Shumaker raised over $60,000 for Tampa Bay area charities.
Maria earned her Bachelor’s Degree in Economics and Latin American studies from Yale University. While at Yale, she received a grant to study the privatization of telephone companies in Mexico. She later earned her law degree from the University of Miami School of Law.
Outside of the office, Maria enjoys spending time with her husband and daughters and traveling to Western Europe, the Caribbean, and Latin America. Maria is fluent in Spanish (she is a native of Puerto Rico) and is proficient in Portuguese.