If you need to solve any complicated legal issue in Israel, don't hesitate to contact them. Otherwise you will loose hours/days/weeks with things that they can solve in minutes. They helped me to obtain my expert working visa in Israel and even after that they responded further questions and gave me advices related to administrative issues in Israel which saved me a lot of time. Irena Rosenberg and Michael Decker worked on my case, they are very professional and helpful. They will not let you down, feel free to contact them.
A really excellent firm. They knew exactly how to handle my situation effectively and efficiently, and we got the result I needed without much fuss. Adi Berger was a wonderful advocate for me and I am deeply grateful for her help!
Josh has been helping me on and off for a few years now. I have needed legal advice and assistance with immigration due to a complex situation of mine, and he has been extremely available and responsive, honest and clear about my route and how to proceed. Very much recommended!
Extrmely friendly, professional and helpful. A big thank you to Irina especially from the Jerusalem office. Highly Recommended.
competent consulting, fast processing, reliable, warm & good team. highly recommended
I have been receiving services from this Law Firm for several years now and I want to say THANK YOU to the team, especially Joshua Pex. They are doing outstanding work. The services I have received for both our Israeli non profit association but also our social business have helped us solve many issues at hand and provided solutions in complicated situations. Personally, I am grateful for support in visa issues as a foreigner living now in Israel for many years.
Great lawyers Joshua Pex and Nechama and Michael Deker who really want to help you and I have very trustful relationships with them. All my cases they took they won. Thank you and let’s keep working together
Dongdiet & Nellie
We are very happy with the services. Somehow they managed to translate the law lingo into language we actually understand 😉 and their outstanding YouTube videos helped us to have a better grasp of what process we had to go through. Their patience, clear explanation and experience are very valuable. It's also very nice to know that you will receive response promptly; it made us feel we can really trust their services. We recommend all those looking for immigration lawyers to get in touch.
Michael and Ariellah Waizman
For Advocate Joshua Pex.
We were in a devastating situation when my wife received an order from the immigration office to leave Israel within 30 days, without any explanation, after we have been married and in the process for six and a half years. We heard of Advocate Pex through a friend of a friend. We contacted Mr. Pex and he was ready to help us when he heard of our situation.
The service is amazing! Always ready to assist without regard to the time it takes. The advice Mr. Pex gave us was great, such as what to do, he gave useful links, and advice about which officials to contact. The price for the service was great!
The process until we received the extension for another year for my wife was not long (3 months). Things started moving once Mr. Pex came into the picture.
We highly recommend Advocate Joshua Pex! We achieved our goal and the fear of deportation has been lifted!
Excellent service, very friendly and helpful, fast responding and very patient. Highly recommend. I will choose them again next time if needed.
We highly recommend Adv. Mike Decker and have know him for many years. He has helped our family with many battles over the years. We recently received our permanent residency after 23 years in Israel. We so much appreciate Mike’s representation of us.
Joshua Pex was both an amazing human being and an inspiring human rights attorney. I reported directly to him for various activities I performed as in intern. I was impressed with his incredibly solid character. He is trustworthy, fair, and goes above and beyond to advocate for the vulnerable. He is completely trustworthy and high caliber in his work. His partners and employees are very blessed to work with him. I am honored to know them.
Oded Ger did an excellent job by reviewing a modeling contract I was offered. Explained the bad clauses in the contract, and their possible consequences. Thank you for your amazing job, your professionalism, your consultation and honesty. You showed me from your experience how it can be done differently. It was the best decision choosing you as my lawyer.
I highly recommend this firm, especially Oded Ger.
Marce Ruth St. Rey
Party time in the heart, my beloved husband received his residence after so much time of battles and faith. Gratitude, God has blessed us with wonderful beings who have accompanied us, including a "precious angel" who touched our hearts, our excellent and fantastic lawyer: Maria Chernin Dekel, sweet and wonderful human being, who has guided us and stayed On our side. side in this intense legal transit whom we bless on every occasion. God bless you dear Maria, you have exceeded your professional duty by containing us and collaborating with us in hard times, very hard, for that we want to thank you publicly, you are unique!!!
We bless and thank the entire team at Decker Pex Tal Ofir Law Firm.
I can highly recommend these services!
Every time we turned to Joshua we always got a professional quick and helpful respond.
We were very satisfied with the service of Nehama. She was very professional in all her dealings and kept us informed all the way.
We highly recommend this law firm. They proved to be reliable, efficient and pleasant to work with.
We had a pleasure of working with Irena Rosenberg who assisted in getting our two U.S. born children registered in Israel and supported visa process for my wife in 2021. During the pandemic, my wife and I decided to move to Israel where I am originally from after living in the U.S. for over 20 years, but we had no idea how to go about securing visas before and after arriving in Israel. Irena is knowledgeable, reliable and competent lawyer who always had answers to all our questions which made us feel confident that everything would be fine with her assistance. We are now happily living in Israel and are so grateful to have Irena who is a genuinely nice person as our lawyer.
The team at Decker, Pex & Co have been awesome to work with in helping our US company establish banking in Israel and in providing counsel for legal needs in Israel. I highly recommend!
We have been working with Decker, Pex & Co - Law Firm in Tel Aviv for many years very well. Because we appreciated their lawyers services, we recommended businesses and individuals again and again to go there as well.
The best lawyer firm I’ve had dealt with. I would like to thank Anat Levi and Ariel Galili from the Jerusalem branch for all of their efforts and patience, we could not have been Able to reach to where we are now without them
Alexander P Gutterman
EU PASSPORT ! Big news! Thanks to Michael Decker and the other good people at the law office, as well as to the virtue of my ancestors, the cruelty of the Inquisition, reparations issued in the Iberian Peninsula, and etc, I am delighted to be on track for Portuguese and European Union Citizenship! A truly incredible development and one which brings me deep joy.
I really recommend the law office's services. The service is very professional and efficient, the price is right. I am satisfied with the services I needed and happy to have known them.
Best lawyer house from Israel! I couldn’t dealt with my situation without their professionalism and effectiveness. Their dedication to every legal aspect and their drive it’s how a true lawyer house can be!
Working in European market and international now, I couldn’t dare to let myself wide my wings on countries unknown to me. Definitely they’ll be the lawyers representing me, my business at every international aspect and on personal development.
When you hear Decker,Pex,Ofir &Co, you hear 10+ class services, luxurious professionals, confidentiality and exclusive attention to your needs.
We were searching for a law firm that will be honest with us and really work hard for a satisfying result, it wasn't an easy task
We found them online; they were the only law firm from all of our searchings which were completely honest and NOT gave us just what we wanted to hear
Using them guaranteed honesty above all. A legal team that is friendly and cares for a superb result
They really care about helping their customers without any other interest
Nadia gave us service behind what we expected; she was professional which lead to fast and easy process with great result
We definitely recommend using them
Incredibly knowledgeable, approachable, accessible, and evident across the board that they truly care about the people they are helping. They are quick to respond, engaged, and obviously top-notch lawyers. I couldn't recommend them highly enough. Thank you, Joshua and Itamar for your help with our Joint Life Application. You were a calming energy during a storm - always breathed a sigh of relief after speaking with you. It is so difficult to get straight answers from the Misrad Hapnim, but you guys are straight shooters. I appreciate your candor and evident integrity. Hope to work with you in the future, and will send everyone I know in need of legal aid your way. Thank you for your guidance and support.
I cannot recommend Nechama enough! Her expertise, professionalism, and dedication to her clients is unparalleled. From the moment I reached out to her, she provided clear and concise communication, and helped me navigate through a complex legal issue with ease.
Throughout the entire process, Nechama went above and beyond to ensure that I was informed and comfortable with every decision. She demonstrated a deep knowledge of the law, and was able to offer sound advice that ultimately led to a positive outcome.
What sets Nechama apart is her compassionate and empathetic approach to her clients. She truly cares about the well-being of her clients, and it shows in the way she handles every case.
If you are in need of a lawyer, I highly recommend Nechama.
Courteous, clear, efficient service.
We were very pleased and content with the services of this law firm. They supported us 100% and solved our case successfully, we couldn't be happier.
I admire the Austrian citizenship team in Tel-Aviv branch! They deserve more then 5 stars!! They are very friendly and professional. I've got Austrian citizenship in 4 months for all family members which consists of 12 people! The entire team is very friendly and responsive. They are always answering questions and support during the process. I recommend to everyone. Was 100% satisfied.
Sergei m Vashkevich
We came to Mr. Joshua with so many questions (and most of all, with so many concerns and worries) …
When we explained our case to him, first of all, he calmed us down and helped us to see the big picture, which took away our fears;
Then he presented us with a detailed explanation and a few options to explore, and a timeline, how things work and necessary steps to undertake on our part,
We thank and highly recommend Mr. Joshua for showing us so much empathy, care and professionalism (!)
We (myself and my husband) came to Mr. Joshua Pex – for his professional advice – and we received such human warmth and caring attitude, that our hearts melted …
His attention to our details and our situation peculiarities, combined with his professionalism and knowledge, helped us to map out what needs to be done on our part: we appreciate and recommend You, Mr. Joshua!
I am delighted to report that my wife and I have just obtained our Israeli citizenship. We will be forever grateful for all of the help, guidance and support which Ariel Galili of Decker, Pex & Co. provided through this process.
I am a Jewish, 80-year-old American, and my wife is not Jewish. We had started the process on our own back in November 2020 via the Jewish Agency and Nefesh B’Nefesh, but soon became entangled in the delays and often-changing regulations due to Covid-19. The pandemic also caused delays in obtaining the required apostilles for various documents from various state agencies and the US State Department.
We found Decker, Pex & Co. On the internet and began working with Ariel in late November 2021. Ariel did a superb job of leading us through the process, helping us to understand which documents were essential, which would most likely be required, and which, though included on the list of required documents, were rarely required. He helped us several times to understand what was likely and unlikely to occur as “the next step.” Helping us manage our expectations was extremely useful to us.
Besides his knowing the laws, regulations and procedures, Ariel also made us feel that he was truly interested in helping us to successfully work through this process in as smooth, timely, and frustration-free manner as possible.
My wife and I strongly recommend anyone planning to go through this process seriously consider hiring Decker, Pex, Ofir & Co. and, specifically, Ariel Galili.
The team of lawyers and assistants are incredibly professional. Aiming to give their clients the advice possible regarding the normative and the law of Israel. With well trained and professional secretary at the front desk to the lawyers team, I could say that I had one of the most professional services possible. I'm super glad of choosing Joshua Pex of Law office for immigration solution, lawyers to advise in my case, to me, it is remarkable.
Very knowledgeable and professional
Mr. Joshua Pex is knowledgeable and Professional. I really appreciate his courteous and direct approach.
The Spanish Jewish expellees in Sarajevo arrived in Bosnia in the 16th century, following the expulsion from Spain and Portugal. The Jewish communities in Bosnia (and in all of the former Yugoslavia) contributed significantly to the region’s culture and economy.
Descendants of Jews from the former Yugoslavia are eligible for a Portuguese passport. Portuguese citizenship means the right to enter more than 150 countries throughout the world without having to obtain a visa in advance. These countries include the U.S. and the various European countries, such as Britain, Germany, France, the Czech Republic, Holland, Italy, Sweden, Spain and more.
Our law offices assist descendants of Spanish expellees and forced converts to obtain Portuguese citizenship. In this article, attorney Joshua Pex will describe the history of the Spanish expellee communities in Sarajevo.
Expellee communities in Sarajevo
The city of Sarajevo was founded in 1461 by the Ottoman general Isa-Beg Ishaković. It was originally the largest among a collection of villages that were united into one city. Over time, Sarajevo became the second most important city in the Ottoman Empire, after Istanbul. At the beginning of the 16th century, Spanish Jewish expellees arrived in the city. Over time, they helped turn it into a flourishing center of life with a thriving economy and a prestigious standing throughout the Middle East and Europe.
Following the Alhambra order issued by the Spanish royal house in the summer of 1492, ordering all Jews to be expelled or convert to Christianity, an estimated 130,000 Spanish expellees arrived to settle in the heart of the Ottoman Empire, which welcomed them with open arms. The Muslim empire granted the Jews freedom to pursue whatever professions they chose. The expellees who reached Sarajevo mostly arrived via Salonica, but some came directly across the sea to the coast of Bosnia. Immediately upon their arrival in Sarajevo, the Jews became involved in trade under the Pasha Hadim Ali.
Not only did the Jews integrate rapidly into the new Bosnian population as successful merchants and craftsmen, they gained renown as the first pharmacists in the region, as well as experienced doctors. Jews in Bosnia were concentrated primarily in the capital city, Sarajevo, although there were also small Sephardic communities in other cities such as Travnik, Zenica, Bugojno, Banja Luka, and Mostar.
Jewish community life in Bosnia
Upon settling in Sarajevo, the Sephardic Jews became the dominant community along the trade routes. They handled importing and exporting of goods from Italy, Turkey, Croatia, Greece, and the other Balkan countries. They traded in textiles, spices, and silk, among other goods. Sephardic Jews also worked in metalworking, shoe-making, tailoring, carpentry, textiles, glass, etc. An illustration of Sephardic Jews’ economic productivity is that they established the first sawmill in Sarajevo.
In 1577, with the growth of the Spanish expellee community in Sarajevo, the Pasha decided to grant a quarter to the city’s Jews, who called it “El Kurtijo”, meaning in Ladino “the Courtyard”. Four years later, in 1581, the synagogue “Kal Grande” (“Large Synagogue”) was founded, eventually coming to be known as the “Kal Viejo” (“Old Synagogue”), when a new synagogue constructed in the early 20th century took over the name of the older synagogue (“Kal Grande”). During World War II, the old synagogue was taken over and plundered, eventually becoming a prison and a warehouse. Today the old synagogue serves as a museum of Bosnian and Herzegovinian Jewry.
Religious life of Spanish expellees in Sarajevo
In general, Jews in Bosnia were treated with tolerance under the Ottoman Empire. The Jewish community was given religious, judicial, and civil freedom. There are records of a few cases in which Jews requested to be judged in the authoritarian Ottoman provincial courts, and were refused because of the rulers’ preference to stay out of Jewish affairs. In some cases the authorities even forced the petitioner to seek judgement in the rabbinic court. Over the years, five more Sephardic synagogues were built in Sarajevo, including one Ashkenazi one.
When it first started, the expellee community in Sarajevo relied on the center of Jewish law in Salonica, but eventually the community developed renowned rabbis of their own, such as: Rabbi Eliezer Papo, a community rabbi, adjudicator, and kabbalist; Rabbi Abraham Penso, who served as the head of the yeshiva and rabbinical court in Sarajevo; Rabbi David Pardo, the chief rabbi of the Sarajevo community, head of the yeshiva, commentator, adjudicator, and poet; and Rabbi Judah Alkalai, one of the first advocates of Zionism.
Shimon Leib Herzl, grandfather of the visionary of the Jewish state, visited Rabbi Alkalai at the synagogue when he was staying in Zemun (as a teacher for the Jewish population), near the city of Belgrade, and laid hands on one of the first copies of an article by Alkalai from 1857 – entitled “Return of the Jews to the Holy Land and Renewal of Jerusalem’s Glory”. Herzl’s application of modern Zionism was undoubtedly influenced by this relationship. The Israeli city Or Yehuda is named after Judah Alkalai.
Additional articles about Spanish Jewish expellees in various countries
- Spanish expellee communities in England
- The Torch of Fire and Life – Sephardic communities in Tunis
- Libyan Jewry eligible for Portuguese passport
- Spanish Expellees in Turkey and the Home of Ladino
- The Life of Expellee Communities in Bulgaria
Thank you to Jonathan Gavrielov for writing this article about Spanish Jewish expellee communities in Sarajevo, as well as other articles on Spanish and Portuguese Jewish communities and their expellees.
Contact us regarding Portuguese citizenship – Israeli attorneys at law
Our office assists the descendants of Spanish Jewish expellees in Sarajevo to obtain Portuguese citizenship. Make an appointment for a consultation with an attorney in Tel Aviv or Jerusalem if you want to obtain a passport to a European Union member state.
Not sure whether you are eligible for a Portuguese passport? We recommend starting by checking to see whether your ancestors’ names appear in the List of Last Names Eligible for a Portuguese Passport. For an immediate eligibility check free of charge, call the following numbers: