Ryan Swanson & Cleveland, PLLC
401 Union Street, Suite 1500
Seattle, WA 98101-2668
Ryan Swanson & Cleveland, PLLC
401 Union Street, Suite 1500
Seattle, WA 98101-2668

Ryan Swanson & Cleveland, PLLC
401 Union Street, Suite 1500
Seattle, WA 98101-2668

Joel H. Paget
Assisting businesses with legally employing the best and brightest people and helping everyone in achieving their dreams of living in America.

Joel takes great pride in helping “bring the best and brightest into the United States.” His immigration practice includes assisting immigrants to obtain employment visas, permanent residence, citizenship and naturalization in the United States. Joel also is available to discuss the opportunities that will be available under the comprehensive immigration reform proposals.

Immigration Services
  • Ability to pay
  • Adjustment of status
  • B-1 (business visitor)
  • B-2 (pleasure visitor)
  • Change of status
  • Chile Free Trade Agreement
  • Citizenship (including dual)
  • Consular processing/appointment
  • U.S. Consulate at Vancouver, B.C.
  • DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals)
  • Diversity Lottery
  • E-1 (treaty traders)
  • E-2 (treaty investors)
  • E-3 (Australia)
  • EB-1 (executives and managers)
  • EB-5 (investors)
  • E-verification
  • ESTA
  • Expedited naturalization for spouses of U.S. citizens working overseas (Section 319(b))
  • Fiancé visa (K1/K3)
  • Following to join
  • Freedom of Information Act Requests
  • H-1B
  • H-1B1 (Chile and Singapore)
  • H-3 (trainee)
  • I-140 Petitions
  • L-1 (intra-company transfers)
  • L-1 (blanket)
  • Labor Certification Application
  • Labor Condition Application
  • Liability to pay
  • Naturalization
  • Nurses
  • O-1 classifications
  • Passports
  • R-1
  • Re-entry permits
  • Relative petition (I-130)
  • Religious workers (I-360)
  • Requests for further evidence
  • SSA No match letters
  • U.S. Passport Office
  • U.S. Visit
  • Visa numbers/waivers

Joel works with immigrants to obtain temporary and permanent positions as executives, managers or specialists. He also advises on treaty rights and obligations for payment or non-payment of taxes. Joel has been recognized for his contribution to the American Immigration Lawyers Association’s 2013 publication, Immigration Forms Toolbox. Joel was a co-author of “Third Country National Consular Processing of Nonimmigrant Visa Applications in Canada and Mexico” in AILA’s Consular Handbook, 4th edition in 2019.

Note: Joel does not handle cases involving deportation and removal, asylum, refugees, or immigration related criminal issues.

Joel’s estate planning and probate practice includes supervising everything from simple to complex probates and the preparation of federal estate tax returns.

  • Asset protection planning
  • Charitable trusts
  • Durable powers of attorney
  • Life insurance planning
  • Life insurance trusts
  • Lifetime gifting programs
  • Living wills or directive to physicians
  • Living trusts
  • Private foundation and supporting organizations
  • Simple and complex wills
  • Special needs trusts
  • Succession planning
Honors & Awards
  • Listed in Best Lawyers in America® (1991-present)
  • Rated 10/10 on Avvo.com
  • Martindale Hubbell AV® Preeminent 5.0 out of 5
  • Awarded America’s Most Honored Lawyers by The American Registry (2023)
  • Named to Washington Super Lawyers® list
  • Listed in Marquis Who’s Who in America® (2006-present)
  • Chambers USA – Ranked #1 in Immigration International (2008)
  • Listed in Who’s Who Legal – Thought Leaders USA 2024
  • Listed in Marquis International Who’s Who-Corporate Immigration Lawyers (2008-present)
Professional & Community Activities
  • Board of Directors, Japan-America Society of the State of Washington
  • Past President of Canada-America Society of Washington
  • Member, Seattle Rotary Club #4
  • Significant participation in American Immigration Lawyers Association at national and regional levels
  • Emeritus Trustee, Seattle Pacific University
  • Former Director and Secretary, Seattle Pacific Foundation
Publications & Speaking Engagements


  • University of Washington School of Law (J.D.)
  • Seattle Pacific University (B.A., cum laude)
Admitted to Practice
  • Washington (1970)
  • U.S. Supreme Court
  • U.S. Tax Court
  • United States District Court for the Western District of Washington
  • Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals

Hobbies & Interests

Joel enjoys meeting with people, finding out what their legal problems are and providing options on how he can help them. His clients are pleased with the breadth and depth of Joel’s legal expertise. “When people ask me what I do as an immigration lawyer, I tell them I help the best and the brightest from other countries come to the United States,” he says.