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Experience.  Respect.  Results.

The Center for Progressive Legal Defense is dedicated to the artful practice of law for those entangled in the criminal justice system and those hoping to make a new start in the United States.

What Defines Us?

pro⋅gres⋅sive (adj.): making progress toward better conditions; moving forward or onward.

At CPLD, we are a new kind of law firm for a changing world.  We are consistent, patient and professional, giving each case the attention it deserves.  An integral part of our services is to work closely with our clients so that they can make the right decisions with respect to their legal needs.

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Abigail W. S. Cromwell


Abigail has over 15 years of criminal trial experience.  She has taken dozens of felony and misdemeanor cases to trial, with highly favorable outcomes.  She is a skilled negotiator and resolves many cases short of trial, providing security and predictability to her clients.  Abigail is widely respected by clients, prosecutors, judges, and fellow attorneys. 

In her immigration work, Abigail has pursued successful asylum claims both affirmatively and defensively, winning permanent protection for clients in removal proceedings.  After each successful grant of asylum, Abigail remains involved, assisting immigration clients with specialized assistance in regularizing status, bringing family members to the United States, and all other needs.  Abigail takes care with each application, whether for asylum, the right to work, family immigration, and all other areas to ensure the prompt and favorable granting of rights. 

Attorney & Executive Director

Practice Areas

We work closely with clients to provide exceptional legal services that are catered specifically to their needs. 

Take a look below at the services we offer, and get in touch today with any questions.

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Criminal Defense

A prosecutor for several years before turning to human rights work, Abigail maintains a strong criminal defense practice.  The CPLD handles all types of felonies and misdemeanors in King County, the City of Seattle, and Federal Court, as well as surrounding jurisdictions.


Asylum Claims

The CPLD has a special focus on assisting refugees from all over the world, and helps asylum-seekers navigate the complex pathways toward lawful status.


The CPLD can help those seeking to immigrate to or remain lawfully in the United States, bring family members to the United States, and all other immigration-related needs.

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Modern Office

The Intersection

The intersection of criminal and immigration law is particularly nuanced and raises the stakes beyond the typical.  The CPLD is especially well qualified to represent people in matters touching both of these areas of the law.

After earning a degree in Economics from Princeton University, Abigail competed for several years as a member of the United States National Rowing Team, winning silver and bronze medals at the World Championships.  She later attended the University of Washington School of Law and became a Deputy Prosecuting Attorney for King County.  Searching for a way to have a greater positive impact, she launched the CPLD in 2009 and began working on criminal defense and civil rights defense cases. In 2013 she was invited to join Asylum Access, a small NGO in Tanzania doing legal work on behalf of refugees.  Upon returning to Seattle from Dar es Salaam, Abigail began to incorporate these challenging and rewarding efforts for asylum seekers and immigration clients into her casework at the CPLD.

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More About Abigail


Fighting for Your Rights

"Abigail Cromwell of Cambridge, Massachusetts, covers her face while waiting in line to get inside the U.S. Supreme Court in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Tuesday, March 26, 2013.  The Supreme Court takes up what is probably its biggest civil-rights dispute in decades this week when it hears arguments that could lead to the legalization of same-sex marriage nationwide." 
--Photographer: Andrew Harrer, Bloomberg News.

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Get in Touch

DISCLAIMER: Everything displayed on this site shall be regarded as general information and in no way should it be interpreted as legal advice.  You should contact an attorney directly regarding your own situation.  Note that an attorney-client relationship will only be established after we’ve determined that there is no conflict of interest.

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