Complaints about the work of solicitors handling immigration appeals have finally reached the Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal, which has fined a solicitor £10,000 for acting recklessly by signing judicial review claim forms with inaccurate grounds of appeal and failing to supervise an employee who drafted the applications.
Chambers carrying out immigration work have voiced a “unanimous and strong opinion” that they “repeatedly experience poor standards of service from solicitors”, a Bar Standards Board report has found. Complaints included “delays and outright failure” to pay barristers.
Almost half of asylum seekers are not satisfied with the service provided by their lawyers, a report for the Solicitors Regulation Authority and the Legal Ombudsman has found. It exposed how some firms paid interpreters to recruit asylum seeker clients at ports and detention centres.
The High Court has referred an immigration practice to the Solicitors Regulatory Authority after reviewing five “hopeless” judicial reviews, each of which had already been deemed to be an abuse of process.
The Solicitors Regulation Authority is investigating an immigration law firm condemned by Sir Brian Leveson for a “systemic failure” in the way it allowed an unqualified caseworker to issue a judicial review without supervision.
A solicitor who lied to High Court and was found guilty of contempt – leading the now Lord Chief Justice to refer him to the Solicitors Regulation Authority – has been struck off by the Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal.
Ian Macdonald QC, one of the country’s leading immigration lawyers, has been found guilty of three misconduct offences by a Bar disciplinary tribunal. The offences relate to Mr Macdonald’s role as joint head of Kings Court Chambers in Birmingham.
A district judge has described how an immigration solicitor who continued to practice despite being suspended left behind her a “trail of destruction”.
A member of the Chartered Institute of Legal Executives who specialises in conveyancing has become the first to receive independent practice rights. A probate specialist and a legal executive who runs his own immigration firm were also granted independent rights.
A solicitor convicted of assisting unlawful immigration into a European Union member state this week lost his appeal against conviction, shortly after being struck off by the Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal.