was ultimately a harddecision: “I didn’t want to let thebarrister route go, even though I was quite senior, because I had invested a lot. I eventually moved firms and continuedwith immigration, but I started to steer away fromasylumandhuman rights. I decided togo intobusiness immigration because thepoints-based system launched in 2008and I wanted to focus on a different aspect of immigration.” Over time, Rizwana has fully immersed herself into the sector: “Now I strictly do business immigration and 90% of what I do is corporate. It’s a very different process and incredibly fast-paced. There is a lot of strategy involved and our focus is on helping businesses add to their workforces, whether this is highly skilled workers or transfers.” Ultimately, according to Rizwana, “it’s all about finding solutions for your clients – we have to work with clients to come up with the best solutions for them.” There is a lot of strategy involved and our focus is on helping businesses add to their workforce, whether this is highly skilled workers or transfers, while remaining compliant Implications of shifting immigration policies There are undoubtedly significant changes happening to the United Kingdom’s immigration policies, but the impact of these changes still continues to be unclear: “Brexit is challenging the industry as a whole because we don’t know what the ultimate outcome will be, but it will certainly be wide ranging. Brexit has steadily kept us busy as lots of clients have wanted clarity on how best to deal with the uncertainty or how to manage their workforce. Many global businesses are still considering whether they’ll stay in the UK or relocate. Others have real concerns about
Immigration lawyers deal with all legal matters relating to immigration and nationality. Thework ranges fromasylumand human rights claims through applications by familymembers and students tohow businesses can secure immigration status for their employees. There is a significant and increasingEU lawelement, andmany cases raise important human rights issues. The law is rapidlydeveloping in terms of both statute lawand jurisprudence, andprocedural timeframes are tight. There is a gooddeal of overlapwithemployment, tax, social welfare, mental health, prison law, criminal lawand civil actions. Rizwana Quazi, now a business immigration lawyer, never dreamed of being a solicitor: “I didn’t choose to be a solicitor initially. I always said that if I were to go into the legal profession, I would want to be a barrister, so I did my law degree and Bar Professional Training Course thinking that was the route I was going to pursue.”
From asylum seekers to business immigration
Following her degree, Rizwana began looking for experience: “I started looking for a pupillage, but during that time I needed experience, so I began doing advocacy at a solicitors’ firm. I do business immigration now, but when I started it was just about getting experience. We were asked to go to the immigration tribunal and represent asylum seekers. It was a good way to get the experience that I needed because it was all advocacy. If you were lucky enough to be a case worker – which I was – you got to do everything end-to-end. Because I was taking cases from the start all the way through to the finish, I felt I was getting the best of both worlds.” Rizwanaeventuallybecamea senior caseworker andwas offered an opportunity to takepart in the QualifiedLawyersTransfer Scheme in order to switch tobecome a solicitor – somethingwhich
For more firms that work in this practice area, please use the “Training contract regional indexes” starting on p197.
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