A Yorkshire lawyer has launched a new platform to raise the quality of immigration law practiced internationally. Solicitor, Andrew Gray, had seen so many examples of poor immigration law practice that he felt compelled to create the Immigration Lawyers Organisation.
The Immigration Lawyers Organisation aims to register every immigration practitioner in the world. Currently, over 1,000 lawyers and law firms are registered on the platform.
In order to become a verified member of the platform, international immigration lawyers must adhere to a stringent Charter of obligations. All immigration lawyers in the world can join for free, but only verified members who have confirmed their acceptance with the Charter during an interview, can carry the Immigration Lawyers Organisation badge.
The purpose of the Immigration Lawyers Organisation is to act as a quasi-regulator of immigration lawyers internationally. As Andrew Gray explains:
“Although the overwhelming majority of immigration lawyers internationally offer a wonderful service, some poor immigration practitioners are causing mayhem to their clients. Often, immigration clients are most vulnerable and usually using a foreign lawyer from their home country. If something goes wrong, it is usually very difficult for the client to seek redress.
And in the unlikely event that a client suffers loss at the hands of their immigration lawyer, no amount of money could make up for the devastation that is caused, often splitting up families, and ending careers. In the UK, the Home Office are particularly robust and unforgiving when deadlines are missed, or the wrong paperwork is submitted. A mistake by an incompetent immigration lawyer could easily mean that a client is forbidden from work. An error by a lawyer might even lead to a client being deported.
And here in the UK our legal services are – quite rightly – tightly regulated. Other countries do not regulate their lawyers to the same degree. This platform will, hopefully, screen-out the worst immigration lawyers. Conversely, the best immigration lawyers stand to get far more quality leads.”
By registering on the platform, international immigration practitioners stand to gain greater online exposure to potential clients. As the platform accepts online reviews from clients, the better immigration lawyers ought to receive more quality leads. The platform hopes to create a community of best practice, as well as becoming a font of immigration advice for clients.