Immigration

  • Following changes to the Immigration Rules there was previously no route for foreign lawyers and non EEA barristers to enter the UK for legal work for short periods. Given London’s role as a centre for international dispute resolution this was a potential problem, and it prevented foreign lawyers from coming to London for a conference with a barrister. Following a meeting with the UK Border Agency in January, the International Committee (IC) successfully lobbied for the inclusion of foreign lawyers and barristers in a new “permitted paid engagements” route, which will allow non-EEA barristers and foreign lawyers to enter the UK to work for a maximum of one month (entry into force: 6 April).

  • We recently reported on the IC’s work with the UKBA to resolve the immigration issues posed for non-EEA barristers taking up tenancy. GMC agreed to the Bar Council becoming a Tier 2 sponsor for such barristers (as of late summer 2012) with costs being carried by the relevant chambers.
  • These are important changes to help chambers here and abroad to demonstrate that our jurisdiction is as open as we wish others to be for us. A sponsor set of chambers will be able to ensure that, for example, door tenants of non-EEA citizenship can practise in this mode.
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