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The Immigration Team

Our immigration barristers have a reputation for dedication and professionalism and are instructed to appear in cases in all areas of immigration, nationality and asylum law, at all levels of court and tribunal, from the First-Tier Tribunal to the international courts (including the ECtHR). 

Members of the team have been involved in many of the leading cases of recent years (see below).

The team is committed to excellence in both publicly funded and private work. Our long-standing commitment to the protection of individual rights and the empowerment of the vulnerable is reflected in our work for community organisations and charities, as well as willingness to act pro bono, or in conditional fee agreement in appropriate cases. Members are involved with and active in assisting voluntary bodies and charities including:

Amnesty International
BID (Bail for Immigration Detainees)
Equality and Human Rights Commission

Multi-Disciplinary Expertise

Barristers within the immigration team are often members of more than one specialist practice group. This provides excellent scope to draw on expertise in the overlap between immigration and:

  • Extradition Law
  • Family Law
  • Housing Law
  • Criminal Law

Members of the team are able to provide advice and act as expert witnesses on immigration issues which arise in other proceedings, for example in the family courts. 

Recent Cases

R (DMA, AHK, BK and ELN) and R (AA) v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2020] EWHC 3416 (Admin), [2020] WLR(D) 683:  Secretary of State in breach of section 4(2) Immigration and Asylum Act 1999 duty to provide accommodation or arrange for the provision of accommodation in failing to provide accommodation to the claimants within a reasonable period of time or to monitor the provision of accommodation, and breached public sector equality duty in failing to monitor accommodation.

Unuane v United Kingdom - appn 80343/17 (Fourth Section) [2020] ECHR 832, [2021] INLR 152:  decision come to in accordance with Part 5A Nationality Immigration Asylum Act 2002 was nonetheless incompatible with article 8 ECHR for failure to weigh relevant right adequately against public interest, including to attach sufficient weight to the best interests of affected children.

Wilson (NIAA Part 5A; deportation decisions) [2020] UKUT 350 (IAC): whether an offence ‘has caused serious harm’ rendering the person a ‘foreign criminal’ under Part 5A of the Nationality, Immigration and Asylum Act 2002 is a matter for the judge; the FTT was entitled to find that mere possession of a bladed article in a public place did not meet the threshold, but was still required to conduct a full proportionality assessment under Article 8(2) ECHR.

R (Abidoye) v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2020] EWCA Civ 1425, [2020] All ER (D) 17 (Nov): the application of the presumption against retrospectivity to Part 5A of the 2002 Act; whether the engagement of human rights constitutes an exception to the principle in Henderson v Henderson. 

Secretary of State for the Home Department v Devani [2020] EWCA Civ 612, [2020] 1 WLR 2613: whether the Upper Tribunal slip rule can reverse disposal; the weight to be given to assurances as to prison conditions.

Uddin v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2020] EWCA Civ 338, [2020] 1 WLR 1562: the test for whether family life exists between an adult and his foster family is the same as in cases where the relationship arose from birth – namely real, effective, or committed support; family life is a question of substance, not form; continuing cohabitation after adulthood is suggestive of family life.

Hussein v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2020] EWCA Civ 156, [2020] All ER (D) 148 (Mar): how to qualify for ‘enhanced protection’ against deportation for permanently resident EEA nationals continuously resident for 10 years and the test of ‘serious grounds of public policy or public security’ as required by Article 28 of Directive 2004/38/EC.

Patel (British citizen child – deportation) [2020] UKUT 45 (IAC), [2020] All ER (D) 126 (Feb): a child’s British citizenship is relevant when assessing whether the ‘unduly harsh’ test in s117C(5) of the 2002 Act is met, but is not necessarily a weighty factor; all depends on the facts.

Smith (appealable decisions; PTA requirements; anonymity) [2019] UKUT 216: Guidance from President Lane on the correct procedure for seeking permission to appeal in the Upper Tribunal where an individual’s appeal has been allowed in part by the First-tier Tribunal.

MS (British citizenship; EEA appeals) Belgium [2019] UKUT 00356 (IAC):  British citizenship is a relevancy when assessing whether expulsion of a parent us ‘unduly harsh’ for purposes of 117C(5) Nationality, Immigration and Asylum Act 2002; weight depends on the facts.

R. (on the application of Khajuria) v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2019] EWHC 1226 (Admin):  Requirements of Points Based System hard edged, but given arguability that in particular circumstances there had been equivalent job creation application could be considered outside the Immigration Rules.

Bhavsar (late application for PTA: procedure) [2019] UKUT 196 (IAC):  There is nothing in the Tribunal Procedure (First-tier Tribunal) (Immigration and Asylum Chamber) Rules 2014 that prevents the First-tier Tribunal from refusing to admit an out of time application for permission to appeal to the Upper Tribunal where the First-tier Tribunal does not extend time- refusal of admission is appropriate in such a case.

WA (Pakistan) v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2019] EWCA Civ 302, [2019] All ER (D) 124 (Mar): important appeal on freedom of religion and belief and refugee status, including the application of the ‘right to live freely’ in a protected identity per HJ (Iran) v SSHD; HT (Cameroon) v SSHD [2010] UKSC 31; the Court held that the Upper Tribunal had erred in its country guidance on the risk to Ahmadis in Pakistan by imposing illegitimate restrictions on the refugee definition.

OA (Nigeria) v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2018] EWCA Civ 3042: where expert evidence has been provided in an asylum claim, it is not only relevant to the risk relating to the Appellant’s health, but also as potential corroboration of the truth of her account. 

Forrester v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2018] EWCA Civ 2653, [2018] All ER (D) 11 (Dec): the correct approach to ‘very compelling circumstances’ in respect of a foreign criminal sentenced to four years’ imprisonment or more; there is no need for ‘very compelling circumstances’ to consist of factors independent of the exceptions in s117C(4) and (5); in a sufficiently strong case there may be factors relating to a particular exception that can amount to something over and above the exception constituting compelling circumstances within the meaning of the statute.

Some Significant Cases

Rai v Entry Clearance Officer, New Delhi [2017] EWCA Civ 320: Article 8 family life between adults is made out by support which is real, effective, or committed; s117B Nationality, Immigration and Asylum Act 2002 does not alter the outcome in historic injustice cases.

Shebl (Entrepreneur: proof of contracts) [2014] UKUT 216 (IAC): a ‘contract’ for the purposes of the Immigration Rules is not defined more narrowly than in contract law; a Tier 1 (Entrepreneur) applicant need not, therefore, produce a contract contained in a single document in order to succeed.

R (Gurung) v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2013] EWCA Civ 8, [2013] 1 WLR 2546: historic injustice is based on causation, not the weight to be given to egregious state conduct, and creates a strong claim to settlement where Article 8 is engaged. 

R (ST (Eritrea)) v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2012] UKSC 12, [2012] 2 AC 135: effect of article 32 Refugee Convention on the proposed expulsion of a refugee after a successful appeal.

R (Quila and another) v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2011] UKSC 45, [2012] 1 AC 621: Immigration Rules raising the minimum age for leave to enter or remain as a spouse found unlawful as breached Article 8 read with Article 12 ECHR.

R (Baiai and others) v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2008] UKHL 53, [2009] 1 AC 287: Certificate of Approval scheme for marriages involving specified non-citizens found unlawful as over-extensive and disproportionate to aim of preventing marriages of convenience.

Hysi v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2005] EWCA Civ 711, [2005] INLR 602: requirement of concealment of important features of identity as a condition of internal relocation renders such relocation unreasonable.


We regularly host seminars to help you keep your knowledge and skills up-to-date. 

Recent topics include:

  • Long residence, Fairness and Article 3
  • Afghanistan – Country Guidance Update
  • Iraq, Iran and Sudan – Country Guidance Update
  • Deportation

Details of past and upcoming seminars can be found on chambers’ seminar page.

Members of the team are happy to offer training in house to firms of solicitors or other organisations. If this is of interest, please get in touch with Everton Wedderburn to discuss your specific training needs.

Direct Access

Many of our barristers are able to act directly for members of the public without the need for a solicitor.

We are able to provide advice and expertise with applications, appeals and judicial review proceedings across:

  • Asylum and International Protection
  • Nationality Law
  • The EU Settlement Scheme
  • Business Immigration
  • Immigration Detention and Bail
  • Trafficking
  • Human Rights Claims
  • Family Reunion and Migration


Individual team members are fluent, or have a high level of proficiency, in French, German, Hindi, Italian, Punjabi, Russian, Spanish, Polish and Urdu.