As a direct access immigration barrister I am often called upon to carry out last minute injunctions. Usually when I am on holiday for some strange reason, though this does not stop me from doing the injunction, indeed I have made them from mountain tops in Switzerland at 3500m high, Italian beaches, Moroccan Riads, a train going through the Swiss Alps and on one occasion a swimming pool (I obtained the injunction and the case went to the Court of Appeal).
However while I have had two injunctions in a week regularly, 3 and getting all 3 is possibly a record for me. Briefly the first was for the Upper Tribunal where the Home Office was trying to remove someone who was trying to get evidence for their claim and was detained, clearly they could not get the evidence while detained. Thankfully the UT agreed and the injunction was granted.
The next was from the Administrative Court and a well respected Judge who is certainly not an easy Judge to persuade also granted an injunction preventing removal in a case which if I recall had asylum and humanitarian protection aspects to the claim.
Finally, I was given a call on a Friday night asking if I could make a telephone injunction to the Court of Appeal seeking an injunction where two other barristers had failed in the Admin Court, one on papers, one orally after a long hearing and then finally they came to me. Apart from the thought as to why they had not come to me in the first place and saved a lot of time and stress I happily took on the case.
I say this as you may have had a lawyer that you are not happy with, you are the client, and while I would not seek of trying to persuade you to change your lawyer, your lawyer can often make the difference between staying or leaving the UK and its your right to choose them. My advice put shortly, is choose the best you can afford. My advice is also speak to your lawyer and only change if you feel you cannot get what you want / have paid for.
Anyway this case did not involve me taking work from another lawyer as it was instructed through solicitors who had finally come to me.
I made the call and prepared the argument. There is nothing more stressful than making a telephone injunction to the High Court out of hours Judge other than making it to a Court of Appeal out of hours Judge. It is advocacy at its purest, often one has 20 – 40 minutes, sometimes longer to persuade a Judge to effectively overturn two other Judge’s decisions, Judges who may have had the benefit of all the paperwork, without anything other than a few documents, your wits and knowledge.
My case related to the alleged failure to serve a decision letter. This had been produced earlier during the day and the Judge was not that impressed at the outset. However notwithstanding procedural points there was a part of what was a fresh claim letter that at one page accepted he had a minor child in the UK with whom he enjoyed family life and then in the article 8 consideration stated that he had “no” family in the UK.
Clearly the two could not sit together. I concentrated my fire as it was on this inconsistency and that in a fresh claim letter the most anxious scrutiny was due (WM(DRC)  EWCA 1496 at [6 – 7]).
Finally after a long hearing and one that was extremely uphill LJ Beatson granted the injunction and also made quite severe directions as to the future conduct of the case.
However the most important goal had been achieved.
The client was to stay in the UK.
An extremely tough application,
I would say to anyone who is facing removal at whatever stage you are if you want advice or just a second opinion please do not hesitate to get in touch and I will do my best to secure the outcome you desire.
It was a long and draining week but one that had a positive outcome.
Paul Turner is an experienced and highly regard direct access immigration barrister who is the head of Imperium Chambers , 32 Beford Row, London, WC1R 4HE, 07432 101 211 or 0207 242 3488 and a member of the chambers of Goldsmith Chambers, the Temple the chambers of Tony Metzer QC and who can be contacted 7 days a week for assistance.