Sofia
Mirza

Partner

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Biography

Sofia advises on all aspects of global mobility and immigration law matters. She counsels commercial and individual clients on entry to Canada, including for temporary residence applications (visitor, work, study permits and visas), criminal inadmissibility, and permanent residence (including spousal and common law sponsorships, provincial nominee and express entry applications) for those seeking settlement in Canada, relocating for work or to meet other cross-border related goals. 

One of her main areas of focus is advising the professional sports and entertainment industry, having secured Canadian work authorizations for professional athletes and coaches in the Canadian Football League and Canadian Premier League as well as for professional sports consultants.

Sofia is a leader of the regional legal community. She is a Past President of the Manitoba Bar Association, a former instructor at the Faculty of Law at the University of Manitoba and other colleges in Canada and is an elected executive member of the National Immigration Law section of the Canadian Bar Association. 

She is also a frequent speaker at local, provincial, national and international conferences on immigration law matters. Sofia has also applied her martial arts expertise as a 4th Degree Black Belt and member of Team Canada in Shotokan Karate, with her legal background, to service as National Arbitrator for the International Shotokan Karate Federation of Canada. 

Recognition

  • Best Lawyers in Canada, 2022 Lawyer of the Year (Winnipeg)
  • Best Lawyers in Canada, Immigration Law
  • Canadian Bar Association, Immigration Law Section, Volunteer Appreciation Award, 2019-2020
  • Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory, 2022, Immigration Law
  • Life Council Member, Manitoba Bar Association
  • Women of Distinction Awards Finalist, YMCA – YWCA of Winnipeg, Community Activism and Social Enterprise, 2015

Presentations

  • Moderator and Presenter, “Spousal/Common-law Sponsorships” (Canadian Bar Association National Immigration Law Virtual Conference, 2020)
  • Presenter, “Canada Border Services Agency Port of Entry Issues” (Canadian Bar Association National Immigration Law Conference, Ottawa, 2018)
  • Presenter, “Foreign Nationals Study in Canada” (Manitoba Council of International Education annual conference, Winnipeg, 2018)
  • Presenter, “The Canadian Cross-Border Process” (TAGLaw International Conference, Quebec City, 2017)
  • Author & Presenter, “Criminal Inadmissibility” (United States Criminal Justice Institute Conference, Minneapolis, 2016)
  • Moderator, “Immigration Issues for Young People” (Canadian Bar Association, National Immigration Conference, Ottawa, 2015)
  • Moderator, “I do…Now What? – Spousal Sponsorships” (Canadian Bar Association, National Immigration Conference, Calgary, 2014)
  • Author & Presenter, “Immigration for Students: Work Permits, Post Grad, etc.” (Canadian Bar Association, National Immigration Conference 2013)
  • Author & Presenter, “The Process of Hiring a Foreign Worker in Canada” and “Canadian Work Permits” (Immigration & Employer Compliance, Winnipeg 2012)
  • Presenter, University of Manitoba, Faculty of Law, Community Legal Education Association, and various panels for the business community and non-profit organizations at the provincial, national and international level

Education

  • University of Manitoba, ​LLB, 2003
  • University of Manitoba, BA, 1994
  • University of Manitoba, BSc, 1992
  • 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th  Degree Black Belt, International Shotokan Karate Federation Diploma, 2008, 2010, 2012, 2016

Bar Admissions

  • Manitoba, 2004

Professional Affiliations

  • Elected Chair, Manitoba Bar Association — Immigration Law Section Executive
  • Elected Executive Member, National Immigration Law Section, Canadian Bar Association
  • Board Member, United Way Winnipeg
  • Board Member, Winnipeg Chamber of Commerce
  • National Arbitrator and Legal Advisor, International Shotokan Karate Federation
  • Legal Advisor, International Shotokan Karate Federation of Manitoba, Legal Advisor
  • Advancement & Retention of Women in the Legal Profession Project, Canadian Chapter of the International Association of Women Judges
  • Member, Muslim Legacy Fund Board
  • Member, Canadian Bar Association, Manitoba Branch
  • Past President & Member, Manitoba Bar Association

Practices & Industries