As a direct access immigration barrister based in London it is with a close eye that reports from the Bar Standards Board and viewed.
The Bar Standards Board has recently released its 37-page Immigration Thematic Review Report 2016. The full document can be accessed here: https://www.barstandardsboard.org.uk/media/1760828/immigration_thematic_review_report_may_2016.pdf
In brief, the report addresses the following three key themes, namely access to justice, poorly informed consumers and quality of advice and standards of service.
Among other things the report concluded that certain types of clients such as asylum seeker or people seeking to make human rights applications are generally less informed and more vulnerable than clients applying for work or student applications. The former type of clients have more difficulties locating the best service and have more limited choice of service providers.
The report also found that the closure of key support agencies in recent years and Legal Aid cuts have lead to a considerable decrease in access to justice. There is unmet demand for good quality budget advice. Those who are unable to afford a barrister are now representing themselves as litigants in person, which increases the risk that they do not get equality of access to justice.
It was also found that barristers generally agreed that their solicitor colleagues provide poor-quality work and fail to deliver the appropriate level of care.
We are pleased to say that Imperium Chambers was founded with this very spirit in mind. We recognised the ever-increasing demand for top quality and affordable immigration legal advice from dedicated specialist practitioners. From the very beginning we have been seeking to provide quick, affordable and effective solutions. We are also conscious of the need for clients to be able to instruct immigration barristers on a direct access basis, thereby saving money that would have otherwise been spent on solicitors’ fees.
It is shocking that the survey found the quality of some providers to be so low.
We will continue to provide first-rate work at competitive prices. If you need immigration advice, contact us to book a consultation with a direct access immigration barrister.
Paul Turner is a highly regarded direct access immigration barrister and is the head of Imperium Chambers, Grays Inn Buildings, Grays Inn, WC1r 5ET, he also practises from Goldsmith Chambers, the chambers of Anthony Metzer QC and a door tenant at 39 Park Square Leeds LS1 2NU and is licensed by the Bar Council to litigate and to provide advice and representation directly to the public.