As a specialised lawyer you will advise your clients on legal matters relating to immigration issues. Immigration solicitors give guidance on issue like applying for a visa, asylum seeker application cases or the Highly Skilled Migrant Programme or HSMP.

Those involved in lengthy immigration law cases need as much legal advice as they can get from a qualified person. This is where an immigration lawyer comes in as they can assist them by offering helpful advice and representation to their clients regarding nationality law and new or unresolved asylum applications.

This page will give a insight into the job description and practical duties that a qualified lawyer will have to perform.

Anyone looking to employ the services of an immigration solicitor you should consider asking for any testimonials that they may have as well as their charges. Confirm that they will be with you till the conclusion of any applications you make or your case. You should also check with them to see if you are eligible for legal aid, and maybe ask to see their Law Society membership. If English is not your first language and you have trouble understanding it then you should consider having a translator present at any meetings with your solicitor. Ask your lawyer if they are willing to attend any asylum interviews you will be called to, and what the extra charge will be for this.

Virtually all governments in the world work hard to control their borders and to monitor the entry of immigrants into their country. In England the UK Border Agency is responsible for stringent border control measures to make the UK a safer place. They are responsible for apprehending illegal immigrants and also ensure that bogus asylum applications are refused and only refugees with valid grounds are allowed to stay in the UK.

Apart from immigration lawyers you can also get impartial expert advice from a officially registered adviser with the Office of the Immigration Services Commissioner. They give qualified assistance on issues like voluntary return and also to students wishing to study in the United Kingdom.

Many law firms have different specialized departments to deal with specific issues like, marriage to a foreign resident, naturalization or help in applying for a British passport.

Immigration solicitors can help their clients in court cases or appeals relating to gaining citizenship of the UK as well as informing them about their human rights. Listed below are just some of the areas in which an immigration lawyer can help their clients:

Leave to remain
These are usually granted to applicants like refugees, they can last for a period of up to 5 years. This is different from Indefinite Leave to Remain or ILR as it is known, and also discretionary leave to remain. After the initial 5 year period has expired you are then able to apply for permanent residence in the UK.

Appeals to the Asylum and Immigration Tribunal
If a person has had their application for asylum refused then they can submit an appeal to the Asylum and Immigration Tribunal which is also known as the AIT. An immigration solicitor will help review your case, explain the appeals process and fill in the necessary forms and make sure the appeal is submitted within the designated time frame.

Claiming asylum
As your legal representative immigration lawyers in refugee cases can explain to asylum applicants the requirements they must meet for them being able to claim asylum in the UK under the 1951 United Nations Convention. They can shown you how to make your application at either the Liverpool or Croydon specialist asylum screening units. As well as assisting you when you contact your case worker or the UK Border Agency to discuss your case.

Highly Skilled Migrant Programme or HSMP
This is a scheme run by the UK government that allows highly skilled people from countries outside of the UK to apply to come here to work. There are law firms that can help you correctly fill in the immigration forms to apply for a HSMP visa. If someone is already in the UK they can still apply to be put on the Highly Skilled Migrant Programme.

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