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  • Bio

Simon Sandoval-Moshenberg


Simon Sandoval-Moshenberg is a partner and head of litigation in Murray Osorio’s Fairfax office. He has significant experience litigating against the federal government on behalf of immigrants, in individual and class actions, including district court, Courts of Appeals and the U.S. Supreme Court. Simon has led cases of nationwide impact challenging immigration detention of adults and children. He has also led challenges to anti-immigrant policies such as the Muslim Ban, family separation under the Trump Administration, the attempt to cancel the DACA program, and others.

Simon has practiced immigration law and federal litigation since graduating from Yale Law School in 2008. He founded the Immigration Litigation Clinic at the George Mason School of Law, and has also taught the immigration clinic at the University of Virginia School of Law.

Prior to joining Murray Osorio, Simon was the Litigation Director and Director of the Immigrant Justice Program at the Legal Aid Justice Center, a statewide nonprofit in Virginia, where he was instrumental in helping to pass state laws allowing undocumented immigrants access to driver privilege cards and in-state tuition. He previously worked as an associate for a famed veteran civil rights litigator in Virginia. As a student at Yale Law School, he founded the Legal Services for Immigrant Communities law clinic. Before law school, he lived in El Salvador and Honduras, where he worked for labor rights and human rights organizations.

Simon is bilingual Spanish-English and frequently travels with his wife to her native Colombia, where he enjoys bicycling up steep mountain passes and eating empanadas.


  • Yale Law School, J.D., 2008
  • Columbia University, B.A. summa cum laude, 2001

Bar Admissions

  • Virginia State Bar
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit
  • U.S. District Court for the Eastern and Western Districts of Virginia
  • U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois
  • U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland
  • U.S. District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania
  • U.S. District Court for the District of Nebraska
  • U.S. District Court for the District of Connecticut 
  • U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas


  • AILA and AILA-DC
  • National Immigration Project of the National Lawyers Guild
  • AILA Federal Court Litigation Committee
  • AILA Benefits Litigation Committee
  • AILA Federal Court Litigation Online Course Committee


  • Harvard Law School, Wasserstein Public Interest Fellow, 2021
  • Americans for Democratic Action, Winn Newman Equality Award, 2017
  • Virginia Poverty Law Center award for greatest achievement in immigration law, 2018
  • Virginia Lawyers Weekly, “Up and Coming Lawyer,” 2017
  • Virginia State Bar, Legal Aid Lawyer of the Year Award, 2016
  • SuperLawyers Rising Star, Immigration Law, 2015-2019
  • Yale Law School, C. LaRue Munson prize for excellence in work on clinical cases, 2008

Select Speaking Engagements

  • National Institute for Trial Advocacy, Advocacy in Immigration Matters, 2023
  • AILA Federal Court Litigation Institute, 2023
  • Torture Abolition and Survivors Support Coalition International, 2023
  • “March Mandamus,” National Immigration Project of the National Lawyers Guild, 2023
  • “Habeas Petitions to Challenge Immigration Detention,” National Immigration Project of the National Lawyers Guild, 2022
  • “U Visa Certification Advocacy,” CLINIC, 2022
  • “Access to Counsel for Asylum Seekers in Virginia,” William and Mary School of Law, 2022
  • “The Human Right to Family Life at the Border,” William and Mary School of Law, 2021
  • “New Virginia Laws Affecting Immigrants,” AILA-DC webinar, 2021
  • “Filing a Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus in Federal Court,” AILA Midsouth Conference, 2020
  • “Fearless Lawyering,” AILA webinar, 2020
  • “Immigration Habeas Corpus Practice in the Eastern District of Virginia,” webinar, 2020
  • “Suppression of Evidence and Motions to Terminate Removal Proceedings,” Southern Poverty Law Center staff training, 2019
  • “Immigration Enforcement for Service Providers,” Arlington Va., 2019
  • “How to Prepare, File, and Litigate a Writ of Habeas Corpus in US District Court,” Maryland State Bar Association Immigration Law Conference, 2018
  • “Local Cooperation with Immigration Enforcement,” The Commonwealth Institute Policy Summit, 2018
  • National Immigrant Inclusion Conference, 2018
  • “EAJA and Immigration Litigation,” Federal Bar Association, 2017
  • “Serving the Legal Needs of Immigrant Children,” NLADA Equal Justice Conference, 2017
  • “Recent Developments in Immigration Law, Policy, and Enforcement,” NLADA Annual Conference, 2017
  • “Immigrant Families and Public Benefits Under a New Presidential Administration,” webinar, 2017
  • “The Travel Ban, The Supreme Court, and Presidential Power,” AILA-DC Conference, 2017 “District Court Litigation 101,” AILA-DC Conference, 2016
  • “Representing Unaccompanied Minors: What the Legal Community Needs to Know,” NLADA Annual Conference, 2014
  • “Nuts and Bolts of 42 U.S.C. § 1983,” AILA Federal Litigation Conference, 2011
  • Countless know-your-rights presentations in Spanish and English in church basements, community centers and 7-Eleven parking lots
  • National Institute for Trial Advocacy, Advocacy in Immigration Matters, 2023 and 2024
  • Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society (HIAS), “Mandamus 101,” 2024
  • AILA DC Fall Conference, 2023
  • “March Mandamus,” National Immigration Project of the National Lawyers Guild, 2023 and 2024"

Representative Matters as Lead or Co-Lead Counsel

  • Reyes v. Waples II (4th Cir. 2024): Won a precedent-setting opinion holding that merely renting a house to an undocumented immigrant does not constitute the federal crime of alien harboring.
  • Santos-Garcia v. Wolf (E.D. Va. 2020): Won a preliminary injunction largely shuttering the largest ICE detention center in the mid-Atlantic for the duration of the COVID-19 pandemic, and negotiated a final injunctive settlement agreement. Settled damages claims against the detention center’s private operator and the federal government on behalf of 15 detainees, in one of the first COVID-19 damages settlements on behalf of any detained or incarcerated individuals in the nation.
  • Johnson v. Guzman-Chavez (E.D. Va. 2017; 4th Cir. 2019; U.S. 2021): Won a first-in-the-nation class action establishing the right to bond hearings for immigrants who returned to the United States after having been previously deported. Hundreds of immigrants in Virginia – and, after the Fourth Circuit affirmed, in four other states as well – were released on bond before the U.S. Supreme Court overturned the injunction in June 2021.
  • Mbalivoto v. Hott (E.D. Va. 2020) and Leke v. Hott (E.D. Va. 2020): Established the due process right of immigrants detained at a port-of-entry to seek bond after prolonged detention, in two of the first such cases in the nation.
  • Reyes v. Waples (4th Cir. 2018): Won a first-in-the-nation Court of Appeals ruling against a private landlord holding that discrimination against undocumented immigrant tenants could constitute disparate-impact racial discrimination under the Fair Housing Act.
  • Dora v. Sessions (S.D. Cal. 2018): Won a settlement allowing all parent victims of Trump’s family separation policy to seek a second-chance Credible Fear Interview, and vacating the deportation orders of nearly a thousand immigrants.
  • Aziz v. Trump (E.D. Va. 2017): Won one of the first TROs in the nation against Trump’s first Muslim Ban, and together with the Attorney General of Virginia, won the first preliminary injunction against the Ban on Establishment Clause grounds.
  • D.B. v. Cardall (4th Cir. 2016, E.D. Va. 2016) and Santos v. Smith (W.D. Va. 2017): Established a first-in-the-nation due process right to federal habeas review for unaccompanied immigrant children held against their parents’ will in federal custody.
  • Galdamez v. IQ Data (E.D. Va. 2016): $203,000 consumer class action settlement on behalf of Virginia tenants wrongly charged interest on unpaid rent balances.

Select Media Appearances