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The Legal 500 Hall of Fame Icon The Legal 500 Hall of Fame highlights individuals who have received constant praise by their clients for continued excellence. The Hall of Fame highlights, to clients, the law firm partners who are at the pinnacle of the profession. In the United Kingdon, the criteria for entry is to have been recognised by The Legal 500 as one of the elite leading lawyers for eight years. These partners are highlighted below and throughout the editorial.
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United Kingdom > South West > Human resources > Immigration > Law firm and leading lawyer rankings



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Burges Salmon LLP specialises in business immigration and immigration of high-net-worth individuals and their dependents where its expertise covers the recruitment and employment of overseas nationals in the UK, the planning of immigration strategies, the immigration implications of corporate transactions and outsourcing arrangements, obtaining and maintaining sponsor’s licences, immigration audits and the prevention of illegal working. The team regularly acts as representative on the sponsor management system, dealing with all associated applications and issues, and advises on the procedures and policies required to ensure compliance with UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) requirements. Clients include InsureandGo, Babcock International Group and the Bank of Ireland. Practice head Roger Bull advised Computershare Investor Services with ad hoc immigration issues as well as on substantive and strategic matters, including issues relating to the biometric residence permit, Tier 2 visas, visitor visas and family visas. Suzanna Harvey is supporting EU nationals with their immigration position following the Brexit vote, and also assists non-EU nationals with their UK immigration status, with a special focus on Tier 1 investor visa and points-based dependants visa.

VWV (Veale Wasbrough Vizards) provides immigration advice across all sectors, but with a particular focus on independent schools, higher education, and technology companies. The team, headed by associate Judith Hockin, has particular strength in Tier 4 and Tier 2 applications, and, through Matthew Burgess, is able to offer advice to independent schools on Tier 4 compliance and crisis management.

Ashfords LLP delivers ‘extremely efficient’ advice to regional, national and international clients on the full range of recruitment and employment law for foreign nationals, but also advises on non-contentious immigration issues for high-net-worth private individuals. Its Tier 2 expertise encompasses applications for companies to become sponsors under the points-based system, obtaining visas for overseas workers recruited to work in the UK, and intra-company transfers. The practice also advises on employment-related immigration issues in corporate transactions, as part of the due diligence process or post-acquisition. It has experience in handling applications for indefinite leave to remain and spousal applications. Senior associate Kirsty Cooke, who is ‘able to answer questions articulately and with backed up evidence’, heads the immigration practice and advised a large NHS foundation trust on a number of immigration work issues, including its sponsor obligations. She also assisted Techstars London Ltd with immigration issues arising from the opening of a new accelerator programme in the UK. Other clients include SWMAS, Cachematrix UK, Penhaligon’s, and Diana Food.

Clarke Willmott LLP delivers ‘an always very efficient, professional and appropriate’ as well as ‘trustworthy’ service on the full range of immigration law. The team ‘has strength in depth’, acting for a domestic and an international client base, in part through its China desk, which includes businesses and high-net-worth individuals. A particular specialism is advising on the appropriate route for foreign nationals to enter the UK to establish a business or to obtain permission to work for a UK subsidiary or foreign registered branch. Practice head Alex Jakubowski and ‘very professional’ and ‘accurate as well as circumspective’ senior associate Tim Copplestone acted on a number of high-profile immigration matters, with a particular focus on large international businesses. Clients include Somerset Cricket Club, the University of the West of England, and Bandai UK.

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